COLA and survivor annuity


Q. Is the cost-of-living adjustment computation made before or after the survivor annuity reduction is made? If I retired with a $50,000 retirement, approximately $5,000 per year would be deducted. Would the increase be adjusted to the $50,000 amount or the $45,000 amount?

A. Cost-of-living adjustments are only made to your base annuity, not the amount you would have received if you hadn’t elected a survivor annuity.


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Reg Jones was head of retirement and insurance policy at the Office of Personnel Management. Email your retirement-related questions to

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