CareerLauncher | Departmental Offices of Loreum Ipsum

 

Retirement and Savings

 Federal Retirement Systems

Introduction

Your employer provides comprehensive retirement benefits - one of the most important benefits available to federal employees. It's never too early to begin thinking about and planning for retirement.

To learn more, see Retirement Information and Services on OPM.gov.

Note: Temporary employees with appointments of less than one year are not eligible to participate in a retirement benefit program.

FERS

The Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS) is a defined benefit plan that provides a future annuity based on years of creditable service and highest three years of salary. Under this plan, employees generally contribute .8% of biweekly salary.

FERS-RAE

Employees who were newly hired on or after 1/1/2013, or rehired with less than 5 years of civilian service that is potentially creditable under FERS are covered by the Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS)-Revised Annuity Employees (RAE) plan. FERS-RAE is a defined benefit plan that provides a future annuity based on years of creditable service and highest three years of salary. Under this plan, employees generally contribute 3.1% of biweekly salary.

FERS-FRAE

Employees who were newly hired on or after 1/1/2014, or rehired with less than 5 years of civilian service that is potentially creditable under FERS are covered by the Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS)-Further Revised Annuity Employee (FERS-FRAE). FERS-FRAE is a defined benefit plan that provides a future annuity based on years of creditable service and highest three years of salary. Under this plan, employees generally contribute 4.4% of biweekly salary.

CSRS

If you were hired before January 1, 1984, you are a member of the Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS), unless you elected FERS during one of the open seasons. The CSRS is a comprehensive system of entitlements that provides a full range of pension benefits.

  • CSRS is a contributory retirement system.Your agency matches your CSRS contributions.
  • Under CSRS, you may increase your earned annuity by contributing up to 10% of aggregate basic pay for creditable service to a voluntary contribution account.
  • You may also contribute a portion of your pay on a tax-deferred basis to the Thrift Savings Plan (TSP). There is no employer contribution to TSP.

You may also contribute a portion of your pay on a tax-deferred basis to the Thrift Savings Plan (TSP). There is no employer contribution to TSP.

To learn more, see CSRS Retirement on OPM.gov.

CSRS Offset

You are covered under CSRS Offset if you:

  • Were first hired before January 1, 1984 and covered by CSRS, and
  • Left federal service with at least five years of eligible service credit under CSRS, and
  • Were outside of federal service for more than one year, and
  • Were rehired after De​cember 31, 1983, and
  • Did not elect FERS during one of the open seasons

As a CSRS Offset employee, you are covered by both Civil Service Retirement (CSRS) and Social Security at the same time. You receive a full CSRS annuity at retirement. However, that annuity is reduced - or "offset" - when you become eligible to receive Social Security benefits (usually at age 62). The formula used to calculate the offset generally works to your advantage.

You may also contribute a portion of your pay on a tax-deferred basis to the Thrift Savings Plan (TSP). There is no employer contribution to TSP.

To learn more, see CSRS Offset Retirement (PDF) on OPM.gov.

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Service Credit

Some types of civilian or military service may be credited towards your retirement benefit. However, to receive this credit, you may need to pay a deposit for deductions that would have been withheld from your pay during that period. Contact your Benefits Specialist as soon as possible, to minimize the amount of your deposit.

To learn more, see:

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 Thrift Savings Plan (TSP)

​The Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) is a tax-deferred retirement savings and investment plan for federal employees - similar to the "401(k)" plans offered by many private employers. If you are covered by FERS, CSRS, or CSRS Offset, you are eligible to participate in the TSP. You can start, change, stop, and resume contributions at any time.

Some key points about the TSP:

  • For newly hired or rehired FERS or CSRS employees, effective 08/01/2010, your agency will automatically deduct 3% of your pay to be deposited into your TSP account.
  • The contributions that you make to your TSP account are voluntary.
  • You are encouraged to contribute the maximum amount allowed under IRS rules. The retirement income that you receive from your TSP account depends on how much you have contributed (and the earnings on your contributions).
  • If you are a FERS participant, your employer will make the following types of contributions to your TSP account:
    • Agency Automatic Contributions for each pay period equal to 1% of your basic pay for that period.
    • Agency Matching Contributions, which match your contributions dollar for dollar on the first 3% of pay you contribute each pay period and 50 cents on the next 2% of pay.
  • If you are at least age 50 (or will become 50 in this calendar year), you may be able to make catch-up contributions that exceed the amount allowed by the IRS.

To learn more, see:

 Questions About Retirement?

Contact the HR Representative identified in your offer letter.