Q. If someone resigns at their minimum retirement age of 56 with 24 years of credible Postal Service and postpones taking their annuity until right after their 60th birthday, is it true they fall under the age 60 with 20 years of service and will qualify for the FERS special retirement supplement and zero reduction of their FERS annuity? And are they entitled to reapply for Federal Employees Health Benefits?

A. Any one who retires under the MRA+10 provision (minimum retirement age with at least 10 years of service) can continue his FEHB coverage when his annuity begins. That can either be immediately or later, if he delays receiving that annuity to reduce or eliminate the 5 percent per year age penalty. However, no one who retires under the MRA+10 provision is entitled to receive the special retirement supplement, regardless of when his annuity begins.


About Author

Reg Jones was head of retirement and insurance policy at the Office of Personnel Management. Email your retirement-related questions to


  1. Hi Reg:

    Your answers have been most valuable to me for many years. But, I’d like to respond to this question, and to your reply. Your response contradicts posts you have made earlier this year on both the SRS (see May 10 and May 24 questions), and on the receipt of health benefits (see March 13, 2017). I only ask because when your reply no longer comports with what I understand to be rules governing FERS retirement, I worry that something has changed or that I have really misunderstood this issue despite exhaustive research. Perhaps there is an issue of the person asking about resignation, rather than retirement, which would be a catastrophic mistake on their part in this instance, an would prevent them from receiving FEHB benefits. Or, perhaps there is something different between regular civil service (like me) and postal employees of which I am unaware. Or, it may be that you are stating that if retiring at MRA +20 years and postponing receipt of their FERS annuity until 60, one may not receive FEHB benefits in retirement until receiving that annuity. Which is true. I hope that you can clarify this issue, for me as well as many others.

    • Recheck the site. In a rush to provide an answer, I made some errors which have been corrected. Fortunately, nothing has changed

    • Elaine Lumsden on

      Dave, thank you for your eloquent comment regarding Reg’s response. I do not know what you see but I only still see the incorrect response. Anyone under FERS, Postal or otherwise, who has reached their MRA and has at least 10 years but less than 30 years of creditable service, can either a) retire under the MRA+10 option with an age penalty or b) postpone that retirement to lessen or eliminate the age penalty. In this case they would resign their federal position and then file the appropriate form, RI-92-19 when they want their annuity to commence. If this individual had been eligible to continue their FEHB had they filed for retirement when they left federal service at their MRA with 24 years of service but instead decided to postpone it, they would be able to reinstate their FEHB when the postponed annuity commences. No one who retires under the MRA+10 option, immediate or postponed, is eligible for the FERS supplement.

  2. “No one who retires under the MRA+10 provision (minimum retirement age with at least 10 years of service) can continue his FEHB coverage, regardless of when he begins receiving his annuity. ”
    I think this is still incorrect. Please clarify, thank you.

    • The MRA+10 provision always gives me a brain cramp. I went back to the “scriptures” and have revised the answer based on OPM’s official guidance.

  3. Carlos Velasquez on

    This is right out of the FERS Retirement MRS+10.

    Health Insurance

    If you postpone the beginning date of your annuity, you will be eligible to temporarily continue your health benefits coverage for 18 months from the date of separation from your employing agency; however, you must contact your agency within 60 days and pay the total premium, plus a 2% administrative charge. When your annuity payments begin, if you had Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) coverage for the 5 years of service immediately before you separated, you will again have the opportunity to enroll in a health benefits plan under the regular FEHB program, and OPM will pay the Government share of the premium.

    I think that the option to postpone is only available for people that reached their MRA with 10 years of creditable time.

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