Benefits of military buyback


Q. I’m retired from active duty after 24 years. Is there any benefit for me to buy back my time? I heard only if I’m disabled. What percentage is that and why?

A. If you made a deposit for your active-duty service, you’d get credit for that time in determining your length of service and have it used in the computation of your annuity when you retire. If you made that deposit within two years of the date on which you were first hired as a civilian employee of the federal government, you wouldn’t have to pay any interest. Note: When you retire from your civilian job, you’d have to waive your military retired pay unless it was awarded for a disability incurred in combat or caused by an instrumentality of war.


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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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