“I am age 69 (still employed by a federal agency) and have 10 years of federal civilian service. I have been in non-pay status for the last 8 months as I got sick and needed treatments and rest. I have been eligible to retire under FERS the entire time, but thought I might feel up to returning to return to work eventually. I have now decided to go ahead and retire. Can I now have my agency retire me with a retirement effective date of 8 months ago?

Reg’s Response

Unfortunately, there is no provision on law or regulation that would allow you to retire retroactively. If you retire, you’ll receive 6 months of service credit for the time when you were on leave without pay. That’s the maximum number of months that can be credited within a calendar year.

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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