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 INFORMATION FOR PROSPECTIVE CSRS RETIREES

The information for prospective retirees presented here is not all inclusive. If you have additional questions that are not addressed here, you may contact the Benefits Line and ask to speak to a retirement specialist.

 ELIGIBILITY FOR RETIREMENT

Eligibility for retirement is based on your age, number of years of creditable service, and any special requirements. In addition, you must have served in a position subject to CSRS coverage for at least 1 year within the 2-year period immediately preceding your retirement. If you meet one of the following sets of requirements, you may be eligible for a retirement benefit.

Type of Retirement Age Years of Service Special Requirements
Voluntary Retirement 62 5  
60 20
55 30
Early Voluntary Retirement 50 20 Available only if your activity has been granted Voluntary Early Retirement Authority (VERA).

Your annuity is reduced if you are younger than age 55.
Any age 25
Discontinued Service Retirement 50 20 Your activity must be undergoing a major reorganization, reduction in force, or transfer of function.

Your annuity is reduced if you are younger than age 55.
Any age 25
Special Retirement for Law Enforcement Officers and Firefighters 50 20 You must retire under special provisions for law enforcement and firefighter personnel.
Special Retirement for Air Traffic Controllers 50 20 You must retire under special provisions for air traffic controllers.
Any age 25
Disability Retirement Any age 5 years of civilian service You must be disabled for useful and efficient service in your current position and any other vacant position at the same grade or pay level within your commuting area and current agency for which you are qualified.

The disability must have onset prior to retirement and should be expected to last for at least 1 year.
Deferred Retirement 62 5 You did not receive a refund of retirement deductions.

You must have served in a position subject to CSRS coverage for at least 1 of the last 2 years immediately preceding the separation on which the deferred annuity is based.

 CREDITABLE SERVICE

Creditable service includes all creditable civilian service performed as a Federal employee, honorable active military service, and unused sick leave.

 SELECTING YOUR RETIREMENT DATE

Selecting a retirement date is a personal decision. Although you may choose any date you like, you should consider the following factors when selecting a date to retire:

  1. Date Your Retirement Annuity Begins. The date your retirement annuity begins is determined by your retirement plan. For CSRS employees, the best date to retire is the first, second, third, or last day of the month because your retirement annuity will begin the following day. If you retire on any other day of the month, your retirement annuity will begin on the first day of the following month, and you will have a lapse period between your civil service salary and your retirement annuity. For example:


  2. Date of Retirement Date Annuity Begins Scheduled Annuity Payment Date
    December 31 January 1 February 1
    January 1 January 2 February 1
    January 2 January 3 February 1
    January 3 January 4 February 1
    January 4 – 31 February 1 March 1

  3. End of the Leave Year. If you want to receive the maximum payment for any annual leave you have accrued, you should retire at the end of the leave year. You will then receive the lump sum annual leave payment in the next tax year, which may be advantageous if you anticipate your taxable income will be less in the year following your retirement. Consult your tax advisor for specific advice.


  4. End of a Pay Period. If you want to accrue leave during the pay period in which you retire, you must be in a pay status for your full biweekly pay period.


 YOUR RETIREMENT ANNUITY

Estimate of Annuity. The Civilian Benefits Center will provide you with an estimate of your retirement annuity if you are within 5 years of retirement eligibility. If you have not previously received an estimate of your retirement annuity within the past 12 months, complete the Request for Retirement Annuity Computation and send it to the Civilian Benefits Center at the address listed on the second page of the form. After you retire, the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) will compute the official amount of your annuity.

The Employee Benefits Information System (EBIS) retirement calculator allows you to run your own estimates and the EBIS personal statement of benefits includes projected retirement and survivor benefit information.

TYPES OF RETIREMENT ANNUITIES

You may elect one of the following types of retirement annuities:

  1. Annuity with Maximum Survivor Benefits for a Current Spouse. If you are married, you will automatically receive a reduced annuity in order to provide a current spouse with maximum survivor benefits, unless your spouse consents to an election not to provide these benefits. The maximum survivor annuity you may provide is 55 percent of your full annual annuity. To provide a full survivor benefit for your current spouse, your annuity will be reduced by 2.5 percent of the first $3,600 of your annuity, plus 10 percent of your annuity over $3,600.
  2. Annuity with Partial Survivor Benefits for a Current Spouse. If you are married, you may elect a partially reduced annuity in order to provide a current spouse with less than maximum survivor benefits. Your spouse must consent to a partial survivor benefit. You may elect any portion of your annuity as the base for the computation of a partial survivor annuity. The partial survivor annuity is 55 percent of the base you elect. The cost is 2.5 percent of the first $3,600 of the base, plus 10 percent of the base over $3,600. The cost is 2.5 percent of the first $3,600 of the base, plus 10 percent of the base over $3,600. The CSRS Survivor Annuity Calculator can help you figure the base amount and cost for a partial survivor annuity.
  3. Self-only Annuity. You may elect an annuity payable only during your lifetime with no survivor benefits. If you are married, your spouse must consent to no survivor annuity. In order for your current spouse to continue eligibility for health insurance coverage, you must elect a survivor annuity.
  4. Annuity with Survivor Annuity for a Former Spouse. You may elect a maximum or partial survivor annuity in order to provide a former spouse with survivor benefits. If you are married, your current spouse must consent to the election. To provide a full survivor benefit for your former spouse, your annuity will be reduced by 2.5 percent of the first $3,600 of your annuity, plus 10 percent of your annuity over $3,600.
    A former spouse may be awarded a survivor annuity based on a court order. The maximum combined total of all current and former spouse annuities cannot exceed 55 percent of your annuity.
  5. Annuity with Survivor Annuity for Someone with an Insurable Interest. If you are in good health at retirement and apply for nondisability retirement, you may elect a survivor annuity for someone with an insurable interest. You will be required to provide medical documentation with your application. If you elect to provide a survivor annuity for a person who has an insurable interest in you, your full annual annuity will be reduced 10–40 percent, depending on the difference between your age and the age of the beneficiary.
ALTERNATIVE FORM OF ANNUITY (AFA)

You may elect an alternative annuity if you retire on a nondisability annuity and have a life-threatening or other critical medical condition. If you elect an AFA, when you retire you will receive a reduced annuity instead of your full retirement benefit. This reduced annuity will include a survivor annuity option plus a lump sum payment equal to all your retirement contributions.

If you are married, your spouse must consent to your AFA election. You cannot elect an AFA if you have a former spouse who is entitled by court order to a portion of your annuity or a survivor annuity. Certain senior officials and Schedule C employees are not eligible for an AFA.

The reduction associated with the AFA is based on your age at the time of retirement and the amount of your lump sum credit. If you think you may qualify for an AFA, your retirement specialist will provide additional information.

 FEDERAL EMPLOYEES’ GROUP LIFE INSURANCE (FEGLI)

You are eligible to continue your basic and optional life insurance after retirement if you meet all of the following requirements:

  • You are entitled to retire on an immediate annuity (Voluntary Retirement, Early Voluntary Retirement, Discontinued Service Retirement, Disability Retirement) under a retirement system for civilian employees.
  • You have been insured for the 5-year period immediately preceding your annuity commencing date, or, if your service period is less than 5 years, for the full period of service during which you were eligible to be insured.
  • You have not converted to an individual policy.
  • You are enrolled in FEGLI on the date of retirement.

The cost of your life insurance after retirement is determined by the amount of insurance you elect to continue into retirement and the amount of insurance you want to have after age 65. A complete list of FEGLI premiums for annuitants is available on the OPM Web site. If your annuity is insufficient to cover your life insurance premiums, you may pay your premiums directly to OPM in order to continue coverage.

The FEGLI calculator demonstrates how life insurance carried into retirement changes over time.

You should review your FEGLI designation of beneficiary and update if necessary.

Action Required to Continue Coverage When You Retire

  1. If you are eligible to continue basic insurance, you must complete an SF 2818, Continuation of Life Insurance Coverage and elect the amount of basic insurance you want after age 65, or after retirement, whichever is later. You may choose to receive a 75 percent reduction, a 50 percent reduction, or no reduction. Your insurance premium will be based on your election.
  2. If you are eligible to continue Option A – Standard coverage into retirement, you must elect whether you want to continue the coverage. If you continue Option A, beginning the second month after your 65th birthday (or retirement, if later), it automatically reduces in value 2 percent each month until it reaches $2,500. The cost of Option A – Standard is based on your age, and the premiums will increase based on the age ranges. You will no longer pay premiums for Option A once you reach age 65.
  3. If you are eligible to continue Option B – Additional coverage into retirement, you must elect the number of multiples you want to continue into retirement and the amount of coverage you want after age 65 (or retirement, if later). The choices are full reduction or no reduction. Premiums will be based on your election.
  4. If you are eligible to continue Option C – Family coverage into retirement, you must elect the number of multiples you want to continue into retirement and the amount of coverage you want after age 65 (or retirement, if later). The choices are full reduction or no reduction. Premiums will be based on your election.
  5. If you are not enrolled in Option A, B, or C, check the "I do not have" block.

 FEDERAL EMPLOYEES HEALTH BENEFITS (FEHB)

You are eligible to continue health benefits coverage after you retire if you meet all of the following requirements:

  • You are entitled to retire on an immediate annuity (Voluntary Retirement, Early Voluntary Retirement, Discontinued Service Retirement, Disability Retirement) under a retirement system for civilian employees.
  • You have been continuously enrolled (or covered as a family member) in any FEHB plan for the 5-year period immediately preceding your annuity commencing date, or, if your service period is less than 5 years, for the full period of service since your first opportunity to enroll.
  • You are enrolled in FEHB on the date of retirement.

If you do not meet the 5-year requirement for continuing health insurance into retirement, you may be eligible for a pre-approved OPM waiver if the following criteria are met:

  • You have been continuously covered under the FEHB program since October 1 of the current fiscal year.
  • You retire during the Department of Defense VERA/Voluntary Separation Incentive Pay (VSIP) period; and
    • Receive a VSIP;
    • Take early voluntary retirement; or
    • Take discontinued service retirement based on an involuntary separation due to reduction in force, directed reassignment, reclassification to a lower grade, or abolishment of position.

If you are not eligible to continue your health insurance into retirement, you may be eligible to temporarily continue coverage for up to 18 months under the provisions of Temporary Continuation of Coverage. Your retirement specialist can provide additional information about this option.

Your health insurance costs after retirement are the same as the costs to active Federal employees. The only difference is your premiums are paid monthly rather than biweekly. Premiums are withheld from your annuity on an after-tax basis. You are not eligible to participate in FEHB Premium Conversion after retirement unless you are a reemployed annuitant and health insurance premiums are withheld from your salary. If your annuity is not large enough to cover your share of the plan’s premiums, you may change to a lower cost plan, select an insurance option in which your full share of the premium can be withheld from your annuity, or pay your premiums directly to OPM.

After you retire, you can make changes to your health insurance during the Benefits Open Season or in conjunction with a qualifying life event. You must make enrollment changes directly with OPM.

Your eligible family members will continue to be covered under FEHB after your death if the following criteria are met:

  • You were enrolled for self and family at the time of your death.
  • Your spouse or child is eligible for a survivor annuity.
  • You were enrolled for self and family at the time of your death; and
  • A spouse or child is eligible for a survivor annuity.

FEHB and Medicare. When you become eligible for Medicare, you may change your FEHB enrollment to any available plan or option at any time beginning 30 days before eligibility. You may use this enrollment change opportunity only once. You may also change your enrollment during Benefits Open Season or in conjunction with a qualifying life event.

If you continue to work after age 65, your FEHB will serve as your primary carrier and Medicare will serve as your secondary carrier. After you retire, Medicare will serve as your primary carrier and FEHB will serve as your secondary carrier.

Suspension of FEHB Coverage to Use TRICARE. As a retiree, you can suspend your FEHB coverage to use your TRICARE coverage. You can reinstate your FEHB coverage during the Benefits Open Season or return immediately to FEHB coverage if you involuntarily lose this non-FEHB coverage.

Suspension of FEHB Coverage to Enroll in a Medicare Advantage Plan. As a retiree, you can suspend your FEHB coverage to enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan. If you later want to reinstate your FEHB coverage, generally you may do so during Benefits Open Season only, unless you involuntarily lose coverage or move out of the Medicare Advantage plan's service area.

Action Required When You Retire

  1. If you are eligible to continue your health insurance into retirement no action is required. Your enrollment information will be electronically transferred to OPM.
  2. Once your retirement is finalized, OPM will adjust your deduction for payments missed during the transition. Health insurance premiums are not withheld while you receive interim pay, i.e., before your retirement application is finalized by OPM.

 FEDERAL EMPLOYEES DENTAL AND VISION INSURANCE PROGRAMS (FEDVIP)

If you retire on an immediate annuity, you are eligible to continue dental and/or vision coverage. There is no 5-year rule for continuing dental and/or vision coverage into retirement as there is in the FEHB or FEGLI programs.

Your dental and/or vision insurance costs after retirement are the same as the costs to active Federal employees. The only difference is your premiums are paid monthly rather than biweekly. Premiums are withheld from your retirement annuity on an after-tax basis. You may also pay your premiums by direct bill or automatic bank withdrawal if your annuity is insufficient to cover them.

After you retire, you can elect dental and/or vision insurance or make changes to your current coverage during the Benefits Open Season or in conjunction with a qualifying life event. You must make enrollment changes directly with BENEFEDS. Retirement is not a qualifying life event that allows you to change or cancel your dental and/or vision enrollment.

Survivors of a deceased Federal employee or annuitant who receive an annuity may enroll in dental and/or vision insurance or continue an existing enrollment.

Action Required When You Retire

  1. You are not required to make an election to continue your dental and/or vision insurance into retirement, but you must contact BENEFEDS to notify them of your retirement.
  2. Your enrollment information will be electronically transferred to OPM. It may take a few annuity cycles before dental and/or vision premiums are withheld. After the first successful deduction from your annuity, BENEFEDS will adjust your deduction for payments missed during the transition. You will receive a letter from BENEFEDS informing you of the amount of the adjusted deduction.

 FEDERAL FLEXIBLE SPENDING ACCOUNT PROGRAM (FSAFEDS)

You are not eligible to make contributions to your FSAFEDS account after you retire.

Your Health Care Flexible Spending Account and Limited Expense Health Care Flexible Spending Account will terminate as of the date of your separation. There are no extensions.

Health Care Expenses - You are eligible to claim health care expenses incurred prior to the date of separation, however, those incurred after are not reimbursable. If you used your entire elected amount before it has been deducted from your pay, you will not be responsible for the remaining allotments. Your W-2 will reflect only the amount contributed at the time of your separation, even though you received additional reimbursements after your separation from service.

Child Care Expenses - You can continue to use any remaining balance in your Dependent Care Flexible Spending Account to pay for eligible expenses until the end of the benefit period or until your account balance is used up, whichever comes first.

Action Required When You Retire

  1. Your FSAFEDS eligibility automatically terminates when you retire. You should contact an FSAFEDS benefits counselor for information about your account.

 FEDERAL LONG TERM CARE INSURANCE PROGRAM (FLTCIP)

You are eligible to continue your long term care insurance into retirement. You do not have to be enrolled for a minimum length of time before retiring. Your coverage continues as long as you pay your premiums.

Premiums are the same for all purchasers of the same coverage at the same age. Premiums do not increase because you retire. If you are paying premiums through biweekly payroll deduction, your premiums will be deducted from your annuity on a monthly basis after you retire.

If you are not currently enrolled in FLTCIP, you have the option of enrolling after retirement at any time using full underwriting procedures.

Survivors of Federal employees and retirees who receive an annuity can apply for long term care insurance.

Action Required When You Retire

  1. You must notify Long Term Care Partners that you are retiring so they can coordinate with OPM to set up your annuity deductions.
  2. Premiums for FLTCIP cannot be deducted from your annuity while you receive interim payments. Until OPM finalizes your annuity, Long Term Care Partners must bill you directly for premiums due. Once your annuity is finalized, they can begin to deduct premiums from your annuity. Annuity deductions are not adjusted for uncollected premiums, so be sure to pay the direct bills promptly to maintain your FLTCIP coverage.

 THRIFT SAVINGS PLAN (TSP)

You can no longer make TSP contributions after you retire from Federal service; however, you can transfer funds into TSP from a traditional Individual Retirement Account (IRA) or an eligible employer plan. After you retire, you can leave your money in TSP (if the account balance is $200 or more) or you can elect a withdrawal option. If your account balance is less than $5, it will automatically be forfeited to TSP. You may subsequently request that this amount be paid to you.

You must notify TSP if you change your address or change your name to ensure you continue to receive important information about your account.

If you have an outstanding TSP loan, you may pay the loan in full at retirement or take a taxable distribution of the unpaid amount. A taxable distribution means that the portion of the loan that was not repaid is treated as taxable income and you may be liable for a 10 percent penalty for early withdrawal. If you leave Federal service, a withdrawal request cannot be processed until your loan is closed by either payment in full or taxable distribution.

If you leave your money in TSP, it will continue to accrue earnings. You can reallocate your money among the funds using interfund transfers. However, you must withdraw your entire balance (or begin receiving monthly payments from TSP or from the TSP annuity vendor) by April 1 of the year following the year you turn 70½ or following the year you retire, whichever is later.

If you want to withdraw your money from TSP, you should read the publication Withdrawing Your TSP Account After Leaving Federal Service before you choose a withdrawal option. Because the tax rules that apply to each of the withdrawal options are complex, and may differ depending on the options you choose, you should also read the tax notice Important Tax Information About Payments From Your TSP Account

TSP provides several ways to withdraw your account:

  • You can make a partial withdrawal of your account in a single payment.
  • You can make a full withdrawal of your account using one or any combination of the following methods:
    • A single payment.
    • A series of monthly payments.
    • A life annuity.

You can transfer all or part of any single payment or, in some cases, a series of monthly payments to a traditional IRA or eligible employer plan. You may also be eligible to transfer payments to a Roth IRA; however, rules and restrictions apply.

Review your designation of beneficiary for TSP and update as needed.

Action Required When You Retire

  1. If you want to leave your money in TSP, no action is required.
  2. If you want to withdraw your money from TSP, you should wait 30 days from the effective date of your retirement before submitting your request since payroll must report your retirement and its effective date to the TSP record keeper before your withdrawal request can be processed. If you send the election form early, it might be returned to you.
  3. If you have any questions about your withdrawal options, you should contact TSP.

 SOCIAL SECURITY

You can request a Personal Earnings and Benefit Estimate Statement (PEBES) from the Social Security Administration. This statement shows your Social Security earnings history and the Social Security taxes you have paid into the program. It also estimates your future benefits and explains how to qualify for these benefits. The PEBES is not adjusted for the Windfall Elimination Provision. Most CSRS benefits will be reduced by the Windfall Elimination Provision.

Windfall Elimination Provision. If you receive a Federal pension and are also eligible for Social Security benefits based on your employment record, a different formula may be used to compute your Social Security benefit. This formula will result in a lower benefit.

The Windfall Elimination Provision affects workers who reach age 62 or become disabled after 1985 and are first eligible after 1985 for a Federal pension.

The Windfall Elimination Provision does not apply if:

  • You were eligible to retire before January 1, 1986; or
  • You were first employed by the government after December 31, 1983; or,
  • You have 30 or more years of substantial earnings under Social Security.

Government Pension Offset.Some of an employee's spousal Social Security benefit may be offset if the employee has a government pension from work not covered by Social Security. The offset does not apply to the employee's own Social Security benefit, only the benefit that comes from a spouse's employment.

If the Government Pension Offset applies, the spousal Social Security benefit will be reduced by two-thirds of any Federal pension based on employment not covered by Social Security.

Some employees who are automatically covered by Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS) or CSRS Offset, and those who elected to transfer to FERS before January 1, 1988 or during the belated transfer period that ended June 30, 1988, are exempt from the Government Pension Offset. Employees who were covered by CSRS and who elected FERS coverage after June 30, 1988 must have 5 years of Federal employment covered by Social Security to be exempt from the offset.

You can calculate how your Social Security benefits will be affected by the Windfall Elimination Provision and Government Pension Offset by using the Social Security online calculators. Your local Social Security office can counsel you regarding any offset to your Social Security benefits if you provide them with a copy of your estimate of CSRS benefits prepared by the Civilian Benefits Center.

Action Required When You Retire

  1. Contact your local Social Security office to apply for benefits.

 HOW THE CIVILIAN BENEFITS CENTER PROCESSES YOUR RETIREMENT APPLICATION

If you want to apply for voluntary retirement, you should submit your retirement documents 120 days before the date you would like your retirement to be effective. If you plan to retire on December 31, January 1, January 2, or January 3, you should submit your retirement documents as soon as you know you will be retiring because these are the most popular dates to retire.

You can withdraw your application for retirement before the effective date of separation unless your activity has a valid reason for not allowing you to do so and explains that reason to you. A valid reason includes, but is not limited to, administrative disruption or the hiring of or commitment to hire a replacement.

When the Civilian Benefits Center receives your retirement application, it will be assigned to a retirement specialist who will:

  1. Contact you within 2 business days to let you know that your retirement application has been received.
  2. Review your Official Personnel Folder to determine your eligibility to retire and eligibility to continue FEHB and FEGLI coverage into retirement.
  3. Counsel you about your retirement benefits and processing timeframes.
  4. Prepare associated agency forms.

Your separation personnel action will process in the Defense Civilian Personnel Data System on the effective date and electronically transfer to your servicing payroll office.

Your payroll office will process your last pay check and send your retirement record to the Civilian Benefits Center.

The Civilian Benefits Center will attach the payroll documents to your retirement application and mail it to OPM within 30 days of the effective date of your separation.

HOW YOUR PAYROLL OFFICE PROCESSES YOUR FINAL PAY

Your last pay check will be sent to your financial institution on the next pay date after you retire.

You will receive a lump sum payment for your annual leave within 2 pay dates of separation. Leave is paid out as if you had remained employed until the leave had been used. If you retire at the beginning of the year when pay increases normally occur, you will receive a higher payout if the annual leave extends you past the effective date of a pay increase. Social Security (if applicable), Medicare, and Federal and State income tax are withheld from lump sum annual leave payments.

Notify your retirement specialist if you have accepted another federal position. You are not eligible to receive a lump-sum payment for your annual leave when you retire if you will be immediately reemployed in a federal position subject to a formal leave system. If you are reemployed in a federal position after you receive a lump-sum payment for your annual leave you will be required to refund the portion of the lump-sum payment that represents the period between the date of reemployment and the expiration of the lump-sum period.

Your last Leave and Earnings Statement (LES) will provide information about the date your pay information was sent to OPM.

If you are approved for VSIP, you will be paid as follows:

  1. If you elected the lump sum option, you will be paid the pay date after you retire.
  2. If you elected the 6-month installment option, you will receive one half 6 months after you retire and the other half 12 months after you retire.
  3. If you elected the biweekly installment option, you will begin to receive payments the pay date after you retire.
HOW OPM PROCESSES YOUR RETIREMENT

CSA Number. Within 3 – 5 business days of receipt of your application OPM will assign you a civil service claim identification number (a 7-digit number preceded by "CSA"). You must use that identification number whenever you contact OPM about your annuity.

Interim Pay. Most employees are placed in an interim pay status so you will have income until OPM finishes processing your application. OPM authorizes your first interim payment in an average of 5 – 7 business days from the date they receive your retirement records and payments are made in the next payment cycle. OPM’s goal is to provide you with approximately 90% of your expected net monthly payment (less Federal income tax withholding). The net payment amount is the amount of the annuity payment after deducting premiums for health benefits and life insurance from the gross rate.

There are conditions that could cause you to receive less than 90% of your expected net estimate:

  • Entitlement to a special computation as a Law Enforcement Officer, Fire Fighter, Air Traffic Controller or other special retirement group
  • CSRS Offset annuitant within 90 days of or over the age of 62
  • Court Order on file at OPM
  • Part-time service
  • Non-deduction service performed after 10/1/82 creditable under CSRS where the deposit has not been paid in full
  • Refunded service creditable toward CSRS non-disability retirement that ended on or after 3/1/91 where the redeposit has not been paid
  • Receipt of Military Retired Pay
  • Unpaid Military Deposits
  • Excess Leave Without Pay
  • Unverified or missing service
  • Insurable Interest survivor election made
  • No survivor election made

OPM may be unable to authorize interim payments if title to an annuity is not established because of:

  • Unverified or missing service
  • Waiver of military retired pay is not verified
  • Payment of deposit or redeposit is required for title to annuity
  • Retiree appears to be in receipt of workers’ compensation payments
  • Annuity is Insufficient to withhold health benefits and/or life insurance premiums

Upon final adjudication of your application, OPM will pay the accrued annuity due, less health benefits and life insurance premiums due, and any additional Federal income tax withholding.

After your claim is adjudicated you will receive your regular monthly annuity on the first business day of the month. If the amount of your annuity payment changes, you will be notified by OPM.

Deposit Service. If you have CSRS service on or after October 1, 1982 for which no contributions were made, you will have the opportunity to pay the contributions, and OPM will tell you how your monthly benefit is affected.

If you have CSRS service prior to October 1, 1982 for which no contributions were made, OPM will not notify you before it finishes processing your application because it is generally not to your advantage to make the payment.

Excess Retirement Contributions. Retirement deductions withheld from the first of the month after you have performed sufficient service to entitle you to the 80 percent maximum annuity earn 3 percent interest compounded annually to the date of your retirement. These deductions plus interest, are automatically applied toward any deposit due for civilian nondeduction service, and/or redeposit due for civilian refunded service that ended on or after March 1, 1991.

Note: Excess deductions are not automatically applied toward a redeposit due for civilian refunded service that ended before March 1, 1991. The actuarial reduction applies to the maximum annuity. However, if you elect to purchase an additional annuity with the excess deductions, the redeposit has to be paid in full.

You have the option to receive a refund of any remaining balance or to use it to purchase additional retirement annuity. If the balance is less than $200 it is automatically refunded to you. If the balance is greater than $200 OPM will send you a letter that provides information about the amount of additional annuity the excess deductions and interest would purchase. You will make an election whether to receive a refund or purchase additional annuity after you receive the OPM notice.

OPM Processing Time. If your retirement records are complete when received by OPM and additional documentation is not required, your retirement application should be completely processed in approximately 6-8 months from the date OPM receives it. If additional document is required, processing may take an additional 3–4 weeks.

Statement of Benefits. Once OPM finalizes your retirement application, you will receive a personalized statement, titled Your Federal Retirement Benefits, which details how much your monthly annuity payment will be, confirms health and life insurance coverage, and provides information you will need to prepare your tax returns.

Online Services. You will also receive a Personal Identification Number (PIN) to access Retirement Services Online. You can use Retirement Services Online to:

  • Update your email address
  • Change your federal and state income tax withholding
  • View/print/request a duplicate Form 1099-R for the current tax year and two previous years
  • Establish an allotment to an organization
  • Change your mailing address
  • Sign up for direct deposit of your payment
  • Set up a checking or savings allotment
  • View your annuity statement
  • Change your Password

Contact OPM. You may contact OPM at 888-767-6738. The TTY for the deaf and hard of hearing is 800-878-5707. You may speak to a customer service specialist Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m.–7:45 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. The automated telephone system is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. To use the automated system, you will need your CSA number and PIN.

 DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE (DoD) CIVILIAN RETIREE IDENTIFICATION CARD

DoD civilian retirees (except non-appropriated fund and INTEL employees) are eligible for a retiree identification card. Since many retired DoD civilians have no way of identifying their association with DoD, this card provides them with a trusted credential to establish their identity and affiliation. This card does not guarantee civilian retirees access to DoD bases or facilities within the United States nor its territories or possessions. The installation commander retains the authority to restrict access to MWR facilities for reasons such as local demand, facility capacity, and security concerns. Additional Information.

 OFFICIAL PERSONNEL FOLDER AND EMPLOYEE MEDICAL FOLDER

After you retire your Official Personnel Folder and Employee Medical Folder are sent to the National Personnel Records Center. If you need information from either of these folders you should contact the National Personnel Records Center directly. Additional Information.

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