The following is a question submitted by a reader to Federal Times columnist Reg Jones, a charter member of the senior executive service and the resident expert on federal employee retirement issues.

A Fed Times reader asks:

“I am looking to retire May 2024. I believe I have my five years in by May 10, 2024.

My service comp date is 5/10/2019 showing on my SF50 form. How can I ensure I’m eligible to retire this May, and what date I can retire?”

Reg’s response:

Because your service comp date is May 10, 2019, you will have completed five years of service on May 9, 2024. You can retire at the end of business on that latter date or any date thereafter.

Just one piece of advice: Retire at the end of a pay period. That way you’ll get credit for two weeks additional service when your annuity is computed, have the four hours of sick leave you earned during that pay period used in your annuity computation, and receive any annual leave earned during that period added to accumulated annual leave and paid to you at the hourly rate of pay you were receiving on the day you retire.

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Reg Jones, a charter member of the senior executive service, is our resident expert on retirement and the federal government. From 1979 to '95, he served as an assistant director of the Office of Personnel Management handling recruiting and examining, white and blue collar pay, retirement, insurance and other issues. Opinions expressed are his own.

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