Retirement timing


Q. I am a clerk, and I have been with the Post Service since October 2005. I will be 61 this month and am planning on retiring at age 62. Can you tell me when would be the best time to retire: at the end of this year or in March 2015?

A. There is no best date to retire. As I’ve said over and over again, the best date to retire is the one that fits your financial and emotional needs. However, there are a few tips that, once you consider them, can lead you to the date that seems best for you. First, because you are a FERS employee, you’ll want to retire as close to the end of the month as possible. That way, the time between when you retire and when you are placed on the annuity roll will be minimized. Second, retire at the end of a pay period so you can get credit for any annual and sick leave you earned during that pay period. Third, if you have excess annual leave that will be lost if you retire after the new leave year begins, retire before that.


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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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