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 started working for the United States Postal Service in 1986. I left in 1997. I am now 61 years old. I have seen articles online about getting a lump sum payout for my FERS.

Is that possible? If yes, how can I initiate this payout?

Is there a way to see the amount in my FERS account?”

Reg’s response:

As long as you didn’t ask for a refund of your retirement contributions when you left government, you are entitled to a refund.

You can apply for that refund by going to opm.gov/forms/pdf_fill/SF3106.pdf, downloading a copy of the form, filling it out and sending it to OPM.

The mailing address is on the form.

Got a question for the Federal Times expert? Send inquiries to: fedexperts@federaltimes.com.

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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