Firefighter and military time


Q. I am a federal firefighter in a supervisory forestry technician position. My service date is Feb. 28, 1997, for leave. Before I joined the federal fire service (I have the required three years of primary fire service), I was in the regular Army for approximately four years. Under FERS special LEO/FF retirement, I am eligible to retire with 20 years at 50 or 25 years at any age. Will my military service count toward the computation of my 25 years at any age?

A. No, those years of active-duty service will not count toward the years needed to retire as a firefighter, even if you make a deposit to get credit for them. You must have 20 years of actual service as a federal civilian firefighter to retire at age 50 and 25 to retire at any age.


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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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