Vested time


Q. If I retire from the Veterans Affairs Department with less than 10 years’ service but am vested, what are my options for receiving that retirement? I started with VA at 56 years and 10 months and will be vested on Feb. 16 for three years. If I retire any time before I complete 10 years, which would be at 66 years and 10 months of age, how would I get that money back? I am under the impression I have to be with the VA for 10 years before I would receive a monthly retirement. Am I right or wrong?

A. Wrong on all counts. First, you wouldn’t be vested until you had five years of service. Second, you could retire at age 62 with as few as five years of service.


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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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