Re-employed federal retiree wants to cancel retirement


Q. I took a voluntary early retirement (at age 52 with 20 years of service) about five years ago and have since been re-employed with federal civil service full time. My salary is reduced by my retirement annuity, and I understand I need to work five more years to receive a recomputed retirement. Can I cancel my existing federal retirement and just receive my full salary? This may give me the more secure status of being a regular employee rather than a re-employed annuitant. A re-employed annuitant appears to be more vulnerable to reductions in force. Also, my next five years of retirement contributions are only at the reduced salary amount (salary — annuity), so I am not contributing much to my retirement; plus, since it is a reduced salary, I don’t know if these next five years can qualify as any of my high-3 years for computation.

A. No, you cannot cancel your annuity and receive your full salary. If you work for at least five years full time and then retire again, your annuity will be recomputed based on your highest three consecutive years of average basic pay, regardless of when they occurred in your career.


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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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