Ask The Experts: Retirement

By Reg Jones

Converting disability retirement to regular retirement

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Q. I have completed 20 years of firefighter service covered by the Federal Employees Retirement System. I recently was medically disqualified for service due to a permanent medical condition. I am 48 years old — not old enough for voluntary retirement. I have applied for disability retirement. Can I change my disability retirement to a regular firefighter retirement once I reach 50? If not, when I turn 62 and my retirement is recalculated, will I get the 1.7 multiplier for the 20 years of fire service?

A. No, you can’t convert from disability retirement to regular retirement at age 50. And no, the enhanced multiplier won’t be used when your annuity is recalculated at age 62.


  1. andy Says:
    January 26th, 2012 at 1:16 pm

    Re: Jan 25th post about FERS firefighter disability retirement and Reg Jones’ answer. Please see Springer v Adkins 525 F.3d 1363 (Fed Cir 2008) and opm BENEFITS ADMINISTRATION LETTER DATED JULY 7, 2010, NUMBER 10-105 – both available on web.

  2. Vernon Says:
    June 9th, 2012 at 10:20 pm

    This is not true for federal law enforcement which are also 6c.

    See United States Court of Appeals 99-3462, -3467
    Pitsker and Rodgers vs OPM

  3. Joe Larson Says:
    July 3rd, 2012 at 7:37 pm

    My under standing from the Spring V Adkins decision is that your 6C time will be calculated at 1.7. Your time on disability to 62 will be calculated per the law at 1% until your total time equals 20 years and 1.1% multiplier after 20 until 62 years.