Ask The Experts: Retirement

By Reg Jones

MRA+30 calculation

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Q: Can you confirm that a FERS employee who retires from air traffic control, law enforcement, or fire fighting at their minimum retirement age with 30 years of service in the covered position will have their retirement calculated with all (30 years at 1.7 percent) as opposed to (20 years at 1.7 percent and 10 years at 1 percent)? In addition, lets assume only 15 years in the covered position and 15 years in a non-covered position that the calculation will be (15 years at 1.7 percent) and (15 years at 1 percent)? Lots of people believe that they need at least 20 years in a covered position or none of those years will be counted at 1.7 percent. I believe that is true if they retire without having 30 years of government service, but anyone that retires under the MRA+30 option gets all covered service at 1.7 percent as long as they have at least five years of covered time. Is that a correct interpretation of the law?

A: This special provision above only applies to air traffic controllers. The basis for it is 5 USC 8412(a). Check with your personnel office to be sure that that provision applies to you.

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Comments

  1. Mike Moore Says:
    June 12th, 2011 at 2:22 am

    The 1.7 percent will only be for ATC good time, not all time. If you do 30 or more years ATC only, it will be 1.7 for all years. Any other government time will be 1 percent. Some ATC may not be able to reach the required time of 30 years plus mimimum MRA because (ATC maximum retirement age 56) they were born after 1964. The FERS MRA increases past age 56 for those individuals.

  2. Doug Says:
    August 9th, 2011 at 7:12 pm

    Not necesarily true. You could be in a staff position or 2nd level supervisor position and not have to retire at 56 therefore you would be able to make the MRA + 30 if born after 1964 and still get 1.7% for all your good time years. You just have to make sure you secure your staff job before getting close to the mandatory 56 retirement.