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Pay & Leave Recruitment, Relocation & Retention Incentives

Fact Sheet: Calculating Maximum Recruitment and Relocation Incentives for Service Periods of Various Lengths

The following table compares the maximum recruitment or relocation incentive amounts that would be payable to an employee for service periods of various lengths. The maximum incentive amount is calculated by multiplying the employee’s annual rate of basic pay (as in effect at the beginning of the service period) × maximum incentive percentage × length of the service period. The maximum recruitment or relocation incentive an agency may authorize is 25 percent or, with OPM approval based on a critical agency need, 50 percent. In no event may a recruitment or relocation incentive exceed 100 percent of the employee’s rate of basic pay.

The maximum recruitment and relocation incentive amounts shown in the tables below are based on a GS-13, step 1, employee in Washington, DC, in 2017, with an annual rate of basic pay of $94,796 at the beginning of the service period, including locality pay. Note that the amounts shown are the maximum incentive amounts an agency may pay for the stated period of service. The maximum recruitment or relocation incentive an agency may authorize without OPM approval is shown in the first table. The maximum incentive amount an agency may pay with a waiver approved by OPM is shown in the second table. The agency may always choose to pay a lower incentive rate for the same period of service. (See 5 CFR 575.109 and 575.209.)

Maximum Incentive Amounts without OPM waiver
Length of Service AgreementMaximum Incentive AmountFormula
(annual rate x maximum incentive percentage x years in service period)

½ year

$11,849.50

$94,796 x 25% x .5 years

1 year

$23,699.00

$94,796 x 25% x 1 year

1 ½ years

$35,548.50

$94,796 x 25% x 1.5 years

2 years

$47,398.00

$94,796 x 25% x 2 years

2 ½ years

$59,247.50

$94,796 x 25% x 2.5 years

3 years

$71,097.00

$94,796 x 25% x 3 years

4 years

$94,796.00

$94,796 x 25% x 4 years

Maximum Incentive Amounts without OPM waiver
Length of Service AgreementMaximum Incentive AmountFormula
(annual rate x maximum incentive percentage x years in service period)

½ year

$23,699.00

$94,796 x 50% x .5 years

1 year

$47,398.00

$94,796 x 50% x 1 year

1 ½ years

$71,097.00

$94,796 x 50% x 1.5 years

2 years

$94,796.00

$94,796 x 50% x 2 years

2 ½ years

$94,796.00

$94,796 x 40% x 2.5 years*

3 years

$94,796.00

$94,796 x 33 1/3% x 3 years*

4 years

$94,796.00

$94,796 x 25% x 4 years**

* The total amount of a recruitment or relocation incentive may not exceed 100 percent of the employee's rate of basic pay, even when OPM approves an incentive amount that exceeds 25 percent. To determine the maximum incentive percentage for service periods greater than 2 years when OPM approves an incentive amount that exceeds 25 percent, divide 100 percent by the number of years in the service period.

** Since the recruitment or relocation incentive does not exceed 25 percent, an OPM waiver would not be necessary.

References

  • 5 U.S.C. 5753
  • 5 CFR part 575, subparts A and B
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