I just started as a federal employee this week. Can I qualify for 0.8% FERS based on past fed job?

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I worked for the DoD from 1985-1989 during summers while in college. I do not recall if retirement contributions were made. Can I make a “deposit” to get that time to “count”? If it does “count”, would I qualify for the 0.8% employee FERS annuity contribution? Or a larger annuity when I retire? Or both? Thanks! Harry

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Asked on March 13, 2018 2:36 am
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If you worked only during the summers of 1985-1989, you probably have less than 5 years of federal service and did not pay into the retirement system. To be covered by the original FERS, that is one key to be exempt from FERS RAE/FRAE. The other key would be that you were working under FERS on December 31, 2012. Since it does not appear that you meet either of those two rules, you should be covered by FERS FRAE which means you pay 4.4% into the retirement fund. Unfortunately, all FERS retirees receive the same computation even if you pay more into the system. As to your 1985-1989 service. Any federal service performed PRIOR to 01/01/1989 and no deductions were paid into the retirement fund, you can make a deposit into the system to have that time become creditable service for both retirement eligibility and computation. To do this, you need to complete SF-3108, Application to Make Service Credit Payment, https://www.opm.gov/forms/pdf_fill/sf3108.pdf You will owe an amount equal to what you would have paid into the retirement fund had those positions been covered by retirement plus interest. Without making this deposit, those periods of work will not be include for eligibility nor computation but they do count towards annual leave accrual.

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Answered on March 13, 2018 3:42 pm