Retirement at 30 years


Q. I just received my 30-year pin for government service time worked as a FERS employee. I’ve been considering relocating to Florida and can’t find a government job. If I took a job at a town hall in Florida, would I be able to resign from my current government job and have them keep all my retirement and Thrift Savings Plan on ice until I would have been eligible to retire at age 56 without penalty? If so, would I also be eligible at age 56 for the special retirement supplement, even if I were working for the town, or would I have to retire from the town job to be eligible for the supplement?

The only reason I ask is that after seeing your answer to someone else’s similar question (they only had 20 years vested), part of your answer was: “The only way to reduce or avoid the reduction would be to retire and postpone the receipt of your annuity until a later date.”

A. With 30 years of service, you’d be able to apply for a deferred annuity when you reach your minimum retirement age. However, you wouldn’t be entitled to the special retirement supplement. No one who retires on a deferred annuity is.

The writer whose question I answered had already reached his MRA and had 20 years of service. Therefore, he was eligible to retire under the MRA+10 provision. The only way he could avoid the 5 percent-per-year penalty for being under age 60 was to retire and postpone the receipt of his annuity to a later date. Although you have 30 years of service, you haven’t reached your MRA. Therefore, you aren’t eligible to retire. So that answer doesn’t apply 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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