Ask The Experts: Retirement

By Reg Jones

Three retirements

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Q: I am currently receiving military retirement pay for service with the U.S. Navy from 1960 to 1980. I began drawing my full Social Security pay at 65 years and 10 months. I began working under CSRS in 1980 and am planning on retiring in 2013 or 2014. My question: Since all of my time for my Social Security was from my military service and not CSRS service, will I be under either the GPO or WEP provisions when I do retire from CSRS? Can I receive all three of my retirements without any penalties of GPO or WEP?

A: Unless you have at least 30 years of substantial earnings under Social Security, the windfall elimination provision will reduce the amount of your Social Security benefit. On the other hand, you’ll be able to receive an unreduced CSRS annuity and continue to receive your military retired pay. The government pension offset would only apply if you were eligible to receive a Social Security spousal benefit based on your wife’s Social Security-covered work record.

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Comments

  1. Bonnie Cediel Says:
    January 25th, 2011 at 6:11 pm

    It sounds like you will be losing at least $4,000 a year because of the Windfall Elimination Provision. If your wife had been a CSRS worker or teacher for 10-15 years in many states in this country, she would not get any spousal benefit for the years she stayed home taking care of kids. She also would probably not get the Social Security that most widows get when their spouse dies. That is the Government Pension offset. SSFairness.com is fighting to remove these penalties from SS law. Join them on their website to lend your voice and look for “Social Security Fairness – Repeal the GPO/WEP” on Facebook.