“Upon checking my A/L Calculator, I see it reflects 27 pay periods this year. Assume that I decide to retire on 1/13/2024 instead of 12/29/2023, as I have planned initially, will the proposed 2024 year pay raise also be applied to my lump sum of A/L as well as part of my high three for my annuity pay?

I’m a FERS employee and am just trying to make sure I do not miss any best options in preparing for once and for all for retirement.

Reg’s Response

Lump sum payment for unused annual leave are calculated as if you were still on the payroll. Therefore, if you were to retire on Dec. 29, every day between that date and Jan. 13 would be paid at the old hourly rate and every day after that at the new rate.

As for the date on which to retire, just remember that FERS employees must retire no later than the last day of a month to be on the annuity roll in the following month. For example, if you retired on Dec. 31, you’d be on the annuity roll on Jan. 1. On the other hand, if you retired on Jan. 1, you wouldn’t be on the annuity roll until Feb. 1.

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 the resident expert on retirement and the federal government at Federal Times. From 1979 until 1995, he served as an assistant director of the U.S. 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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