Ask The Experts: Retirement

By Reg Jones

Resuming special retirement supplement payments

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Q. I retired after more than 30 years of service (FERS) and started receiving the special retirement supplement and my annuity as expected. I went to work and exceeded the earnings test so SRS went away. I will be out of my job shortly and would like to receive SRS again until I am eligible for full payments when I turn 62 in February 2014. I am assuming I can start this up again. Yes? What would the effective date be (date unemployed, one month later, etc.)? I also expect that if it starts again, it would not fall under the first-year rule so it is subject to the earnings test. Is that true, as well?

A. Once your earnings have fallen below the Social Security earnings limit, the special retirement supplement will be reinstated. The reinstatement is automatic. However, it only happens after the Office of Personnel Management has done a file match with the federal income tax return that shows you are now qualified for a partial or full reinstatement.

P.S. You’re right. It wouldn’t fall under the first-year rule.

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