Browsing: Annual leave

Q. I’m a CSRS employee who will be retiring on Dec. 31. Over the years I worked odd jobs and earned 32 Social Security credits. When I retire I’ll be paid for a lot of unused annual leave. Can that time be used to buy additional Social Security credits? A. Your paid annual leave cannot be used to get Social Security credits. Only earnings from wages or self-employment that are subject to Social Security taxes can secure those credits.

Q. Is there a limit on how many hours of comp time you can get paid for when you retire? Does the balance of annual leave have any effect on your comp time balance? A. Compensatory time must be used within 26 pay periods. If you retire and have any compensatory time remaining, it will be paid at the hourly overtime rate in effect when you earned it.

Q. I’ve just been offered a job in a federal agency. Because I’m an Army retiree, I’ve been told that I won’t get any credit for that time in determining my annual leave accrual rate. It doesn’t seem right that I won’t get any credit while others who served less time and didn’t retire do get credit for their time. Why is that? A. When it enacted the Dual Compensation Act in 1964, Congress adopted a compromise between the view that retired members should receive preference and full credit for their service and the view that there should be no…

Q. Are temporary civil service position (Tenure-0 , Position Occupied-1) creditable service toward leave accrual? A. According to OPM, “A temporary employee with an appointment of less than 90 days is entitled to accrue annual leave only after being currently employed for a continuous period of 90 days under successive appointments without a break in service.”

Q. I’m going to retire and will receive a lump-sum payment for my unused annual leave. How is that payment calculated? Is it accumulated hours x current hourly wage? Is this considered unearned income? How is it taxed? A. Your lump sum annual leave payment would be based on the hourly rate of basic pay you would have received if you had remained on the job. If you retire before an annual pay adjustment becomes effective, any hours before that change will be computed at the old rate and those after the change at the new rate. Any step increase…

Q. I’m retiring with four months of sick leave, bringing my total time in FERS to 32 years, 1 month at age 65. In the interest of increasing final annuity, I have been using annual leave, rather than sick leave, for medical appointments and when ill. In retrospect, it seems I did not accomplish much, and that using sick leave as intended and preserving annual leave to increase lump sum payout might have been a better strategy. Correct? A. Maybe, maybe not. There are too many variables. While unused annual leave will be paid out at the hourly rate you…

Q. I’m a FERS employee who is thinking of retiring and wondering if there is anything that precludes me from retiring one day and coming back to work as a federal employee the next? A. If you met the age and service requirements to retire on an immediate annuity, your annuity would continue; however, the salary of your new position would be offset by the amount of that annuity. Further, any lump-sum payment for unused annual leave you received would have to be returned to your former agency. Note: If you received a buyout payment, that money would also have…

Q. I am 46 and have 25½ years of service. If I accept an offer of an early retirement, do I have to wait until I reach my minimum retirement age to start receiving my annuity? Also, will my payment for unused annual leave hours be included in my last paycheck? A. Anyone who has at least 25 years of service can retire at any age if offered an early retirement opportunity. However, you wouldn’t receive the special retirement supplement until you reach your minimum retirement age. (MRAs range between 55 and 57, depending on your year of birth.) You’ll…

Q. Is there any ruling that a current federal employer can use to allow me to carry over more than 240 hours of annual leave? A. No there isn’t. However, an agency can restore annual leave in excess of the annual limit under certain circumstances. For example, if it was schedule in writing before the start of the third biweekly pay period prior to the end of the leave year but could not be taken because of illness or the agency’s need for him or her to stay on the job.

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