Law enforcement retirement confusion


Q. I am 40 and entered law enforcement service at age 35 in a primary special agent position under FERS (retirement code M). I was selected as a supervisory special agent (ASAC) five months and some days shy of three years into my primary position. I was unaware until I had been selected and moved to the new position that I was no longer eligible for the special law enforcement 20-and-out retirement. I am still in the secondary position, but the question has been raised that at age 57 (I may now be ineligible for retirement per my employee relations office), I will be mandatorily separated. Since I am now in a secondary position and in FERS (retirement code K), does this no longer apply? I cannot find it in writing anywhere, and if it is in writing, I would like it so I can provide it if necessary.

A. You are either entitled to a law enforcement retirement or you aren’t.

If you are, you will be mandatorily separated at age 57 and have your annuity computed using the more generous formula. If you aren’t, then you can continue working as long as you want and have your annuity computed under the standard formula. Go back to your employee relations folks and ask them to show you, in writing, which scenario applies to you.


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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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