Postal Workers

Custom Search
Postal Retirement
Information on this page is provided by Roseanne Jefferson. Roseanne is a retired USPS employee with an extensive background in USPS retirement, disability retirement, OWCP, EEO, Labor Relations and HR. She conducts individual and group counseling and is able to comprehensively discuss the pros and cons of employees who are on OWCP, disability retirement and regular retirement. Roseanne will be happy to answer your postal retirement questions. Contact Roseanne at
Postal Retirement Q&A April 2012
Good Day Postal Employees:

Well it's April 2st and no solid early out offers yet... but it is only Monday as the saga continues of WHEN this early out is going to be offered.

I have been informed by many of you across the country that you have been told that the announcement was going to be 2 weeks ago, some have said it was coming last week. Some have been taken into offices and told it's coming Friday. The information out there right now is still wide spread rumors. There have even been employees told that the early out would force employees to be gone by May 31st, and yet still no confirmation for the VERA. There is some interesting information that was initiated in February, which leads me to believe that there is going to be an early out or the potential for one because... OPM has gotten their ducks in a row... please see below.

"Dated February 2012, OPM had announced that they are going to require payment from the federal agencies to complete each early out retirement. For FY2012 (retroactively to Oct, 1, 2011), P.L. 112-74 requires agencies to REMIT to the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) for deposit into CSRDF, an amount equal to the FY2011 average unit cost for processing annuity cases ($107.62) if an employee retires under the following conditions:

1). A CSRS or FERS Voluntary Early Retirement Authority (VERA), including voluntary early retirements authorized under 5 U.S.C. 9902 ..or
2). any other CSRS or FERS provision and receives a Voluntary Separation Incentive Payment (VSIP), or
3). any other form of monetary separation incentive (i.e. any form of buyout)."

With this new remittance requirement for early out processing, any agency trying to reduce staffing by a mere 10,000 employees under VERA with or without a VSIP, could be a very, very expensive reduction in force. By doing ballpark math, for just 10,000 (of the 30,000 the postal service is trying to reduce), early out employees, would cost the postal service a processing fee of around...$ 1,000,000.00....I'm just saying !!!

Q 1. -  Hello Roseanne, I am 70 years old and I am planning to retire by the end of June 2012. I will have 28 years and 9 months service with the Postal Service. I am also retired military (USAF). I began to collect my social security at the full retirement age. I have nearly $100,000 in the TSP funds. When I began to work for the Postal Service I was on CSRS. Around 1997/1998 I switched to FERS. I wanted to increase my contributions to social security to bring it up to the 30 years paid. I was informed that my CSRS is now frozen and that when I retire my retirement pay would be calculated under both retirement system�s(FERS/CSRS). I have nearly 2,000 hours of sick leave and as of this date I have earned 443 hours of annual leave.

My question is as follows: How exactly is my retirement pay calculated? Will the 50% of my FERS sick leave be included and how is my CSRS sick leave calculated? Being that I fall under both retirement plans, what retirement dates can be more beneficial for me? Thank you for kind service and response. Sincerely, J

A 1. - Hi J. Before I can address any questions, I would need to know what your retirement code is. Look on your pay stub and next to the retirement, the code is going to be either, 1,8,5 or A. Let me know that, and I can then begin to address your question. Roseanne

Q 1- (a) Hello Roseanne, Thank you very much for your prompt reply! The number right next to retirement on my pay stub is 1. Thanks again.

A 1 - (a) Based on your response of "1" being your retirement code, which is CSRS. You say you switched to FERS that retirement code is "8"; the other code is "5", which stands for CSRS/offset; and code "A" which is FERS w/frozen CSRS. I would have to say that the information you got seems not to line up with what your paycheck stub says your retirement system is. So there ya go, something is quite wrong. Before you do anything on calculations that has to be settled. And it's not settled with me. Your stub says you are plain...CSRS. So none of the FERS issues are relative. You got to get this straight first. Roseanne

Q 2. Hi Roseanne, just waiting for the vera/early out that I have heard about since July of 2011 LOL. Anyways my question: I refer back to your article of Sept 2011. I am trying to figure out the cost difference between BCBS basic (self) versus Medicare part B,C,D... I realize that congress might make this point mute if they change our health plan like they want, but its good to cover all the bases. Keep those articles coming, they are a lifeline.

A 2. - I just found your email this morning when going thru my spam mail...have no idea why it landed there...Anyway to answer your question. Basic BCBS (code 111) - 2012 monthly premium - $121.88 for an annuitant..AND..Standard BCBS (code 104) - 2012 monthly premium - $ 185.42 for an annuitant.

Once you reach 65, Medicare Part A - is free...pretty much to everyone. And once you reach 65 (if not working..retired), Medicare A becomes your PRIMARY HOSPITAL INSURANCE....THE HOSPITAL ONLY!! - you have to have more than this for your doctor appointments, tests, lab work, prescriptions, etc.

If you think that when you reach 65 that medical insurance is cheaper because you have medicare, that is just absolutely wrong - wrong - wrong.

Keeping that in mind, you will be charged for Medicare Part B, based on your income...I would project for you, somewhere around $150.00 per month. If you decide to drop your BCBS (and for the life of me I cannot understand why anyone would)...this Medicare Part B, pays only 80% of the bill, and you have to pay 20% of what Medicare does not pay.

So, you could purchase Medicare Part C that HELPS pay for the 20% that Medicare Part B did not pay......and then, you would still need coverage for prescriptions, and that would be Medicare Part D Silver. Some states offer a combination of Medicare Part C & D. Why would anyone give up federal health benefits to pay MORE than they would if they just opted out of Medicare Part B, and not take Medicare C or D. I hope this has helped explain maybe in a little more detail. Roseanne

Q 2 (a). - That�s okay Roseanne, I figure you would have come across the email at some point...I just read that if you don't sign up for med B at the time you apply for social security benefits, they increase your premiums 10% for every year you wait....I plan to start my social when I turn 62, so if the PO and congress decide they are going to change our health care plans, which I hope they don't, they do it early enough for you to make better long range plans. That 10% increase in premiums seems kind of punitive to me....almost like they try to intimidate you to go the med B way. It does seem that staying with BCBS is the better way to go when you compare it to the cost of med B, medi-gap and prescription coverage even though BCBS has some holes as far as what pct of your total bill they cover. Thanks again for your help and insight, I can't say it�s good to have you out there watching our backs.

A 2 (b). - Just the fact that you "GET IT"..about the medicare versus FEHB Health Benefits is worth it to me. And you are very welcome . Roseanne

Q 3. - Hi Roseanne: I read your article and have a few questions: I'm 55 and considering retiring by the end of this year, and my question to you is, when I retire, how can my wife keep my medical plan if I were to pass? Is there a way I can do part of the survivor benefit so she can be covered under my medical plan if I were to become deceased? Thank you for your assistance.

A 3.- Hi, There are different options in taking the spousal annuity, and an even bigger difference depending on what retirement system you are in...CSRS or FERS. In both of the retirement systems, your monthly calculated annuity is reduced by 10% for the spousal annuity (which is on the NARCES annuity estimate). Depending on which of the two retirement systems you are in, has a different spousal choices. The biggest reason to provide the spouse with the spousal annuity IS FOR THE SPOUSE TO BE ELIGIBLE for federal health benefits, should you pre-decease your spouse. So yes there is a way to do that when you retire. Roseanne

Q 4. - Roseanne, I am a postal employee under the FERS system. Do I have to be offered a VERA to be eligible for the special supplement or will I receive it with a regular retirement. I have reached my MRA and am seriously considering moving on. Thank you for all your help.

A 4. - Hi, If you REALLY ARE a FERS, because some think they are and are not, but if you are, then this applies:
You are eligible for your early out when you reach your MRA and have 30 years (or more); OR you reach age 60 with 20 years (or more); OR are age 62 with 5 years (or more), OR they offer an early out and your are at your MRA and have the years, yes you get the supplement.

They offer an early and you are NOT at your MRA and have the years, NO you don't receive the supplement until you reach your MRA. Those above are the conditions in which you can get the special supplement. I hope this has helped clear this up for you. Roseanne

Till we speak again....Roseanne

About  |  Contact  |  Terms of Use  |  Privacy Policy

Copyright, All Rights Reserved