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To qualify for payments from the Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS) or
the Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS), you must submit a retirement
application. They are available on our website, as follows:
You should submit an application for immediate retirement as shown below.
See information about withholdings,
withholding changes, and how we use your address.
You should carefully read the information that is part of your retirement
application, and complete and submit the forms. You do not need to submit a
separate letter of resignation. A completed and signed retirement application
is equivalent to a letter of resignation.
If you are eligible for a retirement benefit, you should not resign,
intending to submit a retirement application later. This is because if you die
after separating but before filing the application no life insurance, no
survivor benefit, and no survivor health insurance coverage would be available
to your survivor(s). You should, however, complete all the other required "exit
Read more about applying for
When you get within one year of retirement
eligibility, you should:
Complete information pertaining to military service can be found in the CSRS/FERS handbook at www.opm.gov/retire/pubs/handbook/C022.pdf. If you are a current employee, contact your personnel office for information.
As of February 2012, our average processing time is 5 months from the date we receive your final paperwork from your human resources and payroll offices. Of the current pending claims workload, 47 percent are less than 2 months old and 25 percent are older than 6 months.
If we need additional information from you or your former employing agency, your claim will take longer to process. Additional time will also be needed if we need to contact you to make a benefit election, such as a decision to make a service credit deposit, or if we need to contact an external agency, such as SSA for an offset calculation.
You should begin planning several years before the date you have set for retirement so that you will know what is required to continue certain benefits into retirement. There are many factors related to retirement planning, and it is literally never too early to begin. The federal annuity is only one element to consider in today's complex financial scene. You may need to start a Thrift Savings Plan or IRA schedule many years before considering actual retirement. Other considerations, such as Social Security may affect your benefits.
However, the best place to begin is with your local personnel service center. They can provide personalized assistance and they have your employment records.
Your health and life insurance coverages are of immediate concern now because you must carry coverage continuously for at least five years before your retirement or you may be ineligible to continue them.
Check with your local personnel service center to verify that you have enough
service and meet the age requirements for retirement
eligibility. They can provide personalized assistance because they have your
Your local personnel service center will also talk with you about the date
your annuity payments can start based on the date you pick.
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