Annual and sick leave at retirement


Q. I turned 55 in April and have more than 33 years in CSRS. I have 3,069 hours of accumulated sick leave, and 304 hours of annual leave in my current year balance, 164 restored annual leave with a term date of January 2014, and 444 hours of restored annual leave with a term date of January 2015. To get credit for my sick leave, I need to retire with total service and sick leave equaling a multiple of 174 hours? And, I’ll get a lump-sum payout from my annual leave of 912 hours at my current hourly rate?

A. You’ll get full credit for your sick leave. Because a work year is 2,087 hours long, a retirement month is roughly 174 hours long (2,087 divided by 12). If you retired with 3,069 hours of sick leave, your annuity would be increased by roughly 2.33 percent. It would be even more if you had any hours of actual service that weren’t included in the computation of your annuity. Note: Only full months are used in that calculation. Any hours left over are added to sick leave hours to make more months, if possible. Any hours left over after those months are created are dropped.


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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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