Browsing: PAY

Q. I am a Defense Department employee in Washington D.C. If I change my locality three months before I retire Jan. 1, when I retire would the lesser locality pay kick into my base and be used as the high-3? A. How may times do I have to say this? Your high-3 is your highest three consecutive years (78 pay periods) of average basic pay, regardless of when they occur in your career.

Q. I’m a recent federal retiree and I’m trying to project my income for the year. Is the starting point for the taxable portion of my monthly annuity the amount before or the amount after the survivor’s benefit is deducted? From what I gather from IRS Pub 721, the deduction is a pre-tax deduction, but it lowers the tax-free portion amount of my monthly annuity. Is this correct?

Q. Is night differential (shift work) added to my high-3 when calculating my retirement annuity? A. No, it isn’t, unless you are a wage system employee. Then it is.

Q. Between 2009 and 2012, I served two deployments in Afghanistan as a GS employee (CSRS). Can my salary during those deployments be used in the computation of my high-3? A. No. Only actual basic pay earned while a federal civilian employee can be used in that computation.

Q. I left government service in 1995 and withdrew all of my CSRS contributions so I could start a business. I have never returned to federal service. I had over 15 years service including my military service time. Even though I withdrew my contributions, do I still have any pension available to me? Also, is it possible at this point to repay those contributions? I am now age 68.

Q. I’m a CSRS employee with more than 41 years of service and plan to continue my federal employment well beyond 41 years. I understand that CSRS employees contribute 7 percent of their salary into the retirement fund and that the government matches that 7 percent contribution into the fund. I’m told that, after completing 41 years, 11 months of service, I will reach the maximum annuity benefit of 80 percent. At that point, the 7 percent retirement contributions will continue to be taken from my pay and placed into an interest-bearing account to be refunded when I retire. When…

Q. As a retired federal law enforcement officer who earned a law enforcement retirement under FERS, I am approaching my 56th birthday. Since the SRS supplement will be discontinued or reduced at age 56 (MRA), I am curious as to how this amount is calculated? I am aware it will be reduced for anything I earn over $15,480 annually, not counting my pension. Will OPM send me an inquiry, or is this something I am supposed to submit? Do they base it on my earnings when I turn 56, or the previous year’s earnings? I would like to keep the…

Q. I am 50 and I have been in government for 27 years. I am going to apply for a deferred retirement at age 60 or 62.  I thought I read somewhere that the “high-3” was consecutive. If I was a GS-13 and due to BRAC had to come back into the government at a much lower grade, could I still use my high-3 including grades 11-13 or am I required to use the last grade I held? A. Yes. Your high-3 is the highest three consecutive years of average basic pay (78 pay periods), regardless of when they occur…

Q. I intend to make a lump-sum payment this year to pay off the balance owed to recapture my military service for inclusion of this time toward my FERS retirement. I am paying it with after-tax dollars I have saved. Can this amount be claimed as a tax credit or claimed as a tax deduction? Which document says what can be claimed or that neither can be claimed? A. No. It can neither be claimed as a tax credit nor a tax deduction.

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