Benefits/leave after termination


Q. I have been a DHS officer for 13 years under FERS. If I am terminated for policy violations and do not request a refund of my retirement contributions, will I be entitled to a partial pension at age 62? If so, will my sick leave count as more months of service? What happens to my annual leave?

A. When you leave government, you’d receive a cash payment for all your unused annual leave. If you don’t ask for a refund of your retirement contributions, you would be entitled to a deferred annuity at age 62; however, your unused sick leave wouldn’t be included in the computation of your annuity.


About Author

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


  1. I was terminated for misconduct from the Postal Service in September 2009 with 22 years of service at age 45. I rolled over my TSP into an IRA account several years after separation and that’s all I have done. What am I entitled to and at what age?

    Also, am I eligible to reapply for a position with the Postal Service? If so, would I have to retake the postal exam or is it possible to be reinstated? If I could reapply, would I start out as a brand new hire from the bottom pay scale? Would this time be added to my previous 22 years towards my retirement? If so, if I’m 56 now, how many years do I need to be eligible for retirement? Of course, assuming I could even be eligible to reapply or be reinstated. Thank you in advance and I apologize for asking so many questions.

    • You would first be eligible for a deferred retirement annuity at your minimum retirement age (MRA) that you were under age 60. Alternately, you could defer the receipt of your annuity to age 60 and have no reduction in your annuity.

      There is nothing that would prevent you from applying for a position with the Postal Service or any other government agency. Only the Postal Service can tell you whether you are eligible for reinstatement or rehiring by them. Assuming that you did not receive a refund of your retirement contributions, you would need to work until you had the right combination of age and service to retire. Those would be age 62 with at least 5 years of service, 60 with 20, at your MRA with 30 or at your MRA with fewer than 30 years of service (but with a reduced benefit, as mentioned above).

Leave A Reply