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 have a civilian employee (GS) who had a Cumulative Retirement of 5000 for her time working as a GS in the Army. She recently got a new job with the Air Force and transferred over, as a GS, with no break in service.

However, her Air Force LES’s Cumulative Retirement (Block 19) restarted back at ‘0′. Is this to be expected? Has she effectively lost those contributed benefits by moving jobs? If not, is there a way she can see what her new grand total is?”

Reg’s response:

Box 19 is where annual leave is posted. It can contain any or all of the following kinds of information:

  • Projected year-end balance
  • Maximum carryover
  • Use or lose balance

Moving from one agency to another has no effect on those numbers. If there is a 0 in that box, it only means that the information from the Army hasn’t been transferred over to the Air Force. It eventually will be.

Got a question for the Federal Times expert? Send inquiries to:

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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