By Reg Jones
Q. I have 12 years of full-time employment and am MRA +10. Instead of retiring outright, I was thinking of going to half-time for a year or two. I understand my share of health insurance premiums will go up dramatically while I am employed part-time, but what will happen when I finally retire? Will my share go back to the full-time amount, or will I continue to pay the extra half? This is a major part of my decision to stay on because my pension would barely cover the increased amount.
Q. I retired in 2008 with 33 years credited, of which three were in the military. I never bought back my military time. I am almost 59 now and have 35 quarters of Social Security banked. I understand that if I get over 40 before I turn 62, my pension will be affected. Most of my Social Security quarters earned were either military (in the 1970s; wasn’t much) and part-time work.
So I do not have much money vested in Social Security.
If I get 40 quarters and my pension is offset, how can I figure how much that will be? I may decide it’s to my benefit to continue part-time work.
Q. I am 50 years old and have worked for the Department of the Navy for 25 years under FERS. The last five years of my career has been part time (20 hours per week). My wife has also worked for the Navy for 12 years (full time under FERS) and provides our Federal Employee Health Benefits family plan coverage. I have been covered by an FEHB plan consecutively for over 25 years. If I were offered early retirement, could I pick up the FEHB family plan coverage and carry it into retirement with me? If not, why not?
Q. I am turning 65 in December. I am retired from the federal government and have Aetna HMO. I am also retired from the Army Reserve and have Tricare and I am 30 percent disabled from the Veterans Affairs Department (diabetic). I live in New Jersey with my wife at 59; my son is still in college at 22; my 19-year-old daughter is also in college. I work part time and use my retirement health care and Tricare to cover myself and family. I am not filing for Social Security until I am 66.
I am totally confused on Medicare Part B. I have read that if I don’t take Medicare Part B, then I don’t have Tricare. If I take Part B, do I have to pay a monthly fee?
Q. I am under FERS. If I retire when I am eligible, can I go to work part time for a different government agency and still draw my retirement?
Q. I work part time and carry self-only health insurance, using my husband’s nongovernment health insurance for the family since it’s less expensive. Upon our retirement:
1. Can we drop my husband’s health insurance, switch my self-only insurance to self-and-family insurance? Or would I have to carry family insurance for the five years, not just self-only?
2. Also, I’m carrying the least expensive health insurance. Once I retire, can I switch to a better health insurance, or am I limited in some way because I’ve been paying so little over my active federal government years?
Q. I have over 25 years of service as a full-time employee under FERS. I plan to switch to working part time for the next year or two before I retire. I know that I’ll pay a higher Federal Employees Health Benefits premium while in part-time status because the government pays proportionally less. When I retire, will I have to continue paying the higher premium or will the government share revert to what it was when I was in full-time status?
Q. My son-in-law is in his early 40s and is thinking about resigning after working full time for approximately 13 years. Is he entitled to any benefits such as health insurance, or partial retirement pay? Would the above answer in any way be altered if he continued to work part time?
Q. My husband is planning to retire from the government under FERS at age 62 with 27 years. We have a health insurance family plan under his name. I started to work for the government almost four years ago. I am a part-time employee (about 48-50 hours per pay period). I will not be able to collect any pension for many years, and I do not plan to stay on the job after my husband retires, so no annuity for me. If my husband decides to retire earlier with a postponed retirement, it is my understanding that he will have to pay a much higher rate for the health benefits (COBRA for 18 months) plus 2 percent administrative fees until the start of his annuity. If he postpones retirement and I start a health insurance family plan for all of us, will he then be able to restart his health plan at retirement (I know I will not be able to carry it with me because I will not get an annuity)?
Q. Last week, I told Joplin Social Security that I was going to retire Nov.30, but my work has asked me to work half days for a few months. Will this affect my first Social Security check in January? How much can I make without paying a penalty? Do I have to tell the Joplin office that I am going to work 20 hours after I told them I was going to retire Nov. 30?
October 23rd, 2013 | annuity reduction Coverage after retirement Earnings test EMPLOYMENT Government pension offset HEALTH INSURANCE part-time PAY Re-enrollment RETIREMENT SOCIAL SECURITY Special retirement supplement
Q. I want to see if I can suspend my medical insurance (I am retired FERS). I have taken a part-time job that offers medical benefits if I want them. I need to make a decision soon and was told that when I retired, I would be able to suspend my medical if I found work. What is the amount I can earn before I have to pay back to the Social Security (as I am 59), and do I pay back dollar for dollar?
October 11th, 2013 | annuity reduction Coverage after retirement Creditable service: CSRS CSRS annuity computation EMPLOYMENT FEHBP HEALTH INSURANCE part-time PAY Premiums RETIREMENT spouse benefits SURVIVOR BENEFITS
Q. My fiance is a retired federal government employee under CSRS. We are getting married this month, and he would like to add me as his wife to his insurance. However, when we called and asked about the monthly cost of adding me (I have never worked for the federal government), we were told his premiums would jump from approximately $155 a month to $450 per month because I have never worked for the government. Is it correct that what we pay for insurance can climb by a huge amount because I never worked for the government, or would the federal government also pay some of the cost of insuring me?
If it is true that the cost can jump so high through my future husband’s health insurance, I will still need health insurance. I work part time and do not have health insurance. If I apply for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, will they want me to submit household income on my application? If so, does his income affect how much I am to pay for health insurance?
Q. I have been on disability retirement for more than seven years. However, because I was working part time with health benefits, I originally opted out of Federal Employees Health Benefits. Now that the Affordable Health Care Act is being implemented, will there be an opportunity for someone like me to opt back into FEHB?
Q. I am a 27-year Postal Service full-time clerk covered under FERS. My facility is closing soon. I need to know the pension and medical insurance impact of taking a part-time clerk position. In nine months, I will be 62 and hope to retire then.
Q. If I retire from the Postal Service at age 56, can I work a part-time job after I retire, or would I lose my benefits? The part-time job would not be for the federal government.
Q. I have had Federal Employees Health Benefits for several years and will retire soon and collect immediate annuity. If I were to find a part-time job that offered insurance after I retire from federal service, could I suspend my FEHB for a few years and re-enroll after I fully retired in a few years?
Q. I am a level 13 postmaster who will receive a reduction-in-force notice in June 2014. My position as EAS 13 Postmaster will be demoted to an EP-55 Part-time Career employee. My plans were to take the RIF in June and leave in September 2014.
I am 51 years old and have been a CSRS employee since I was hired in 1983. I was counting on leaving under the discontinued service retirement in June. However, now that they have offered this Voluntary Early Retirement Authority even though it offers no incentive, should I take the “safe” out now or wait until the RIF next June? (I am aware that I will take a 2 percent-per-year reduction for each year I retire under the age of 55.)
Q. I plan to retire soon with over 30 years of creditable federal service time. I will be age 58 when I retire. If I were to take a part-time job (private sector, not federal service) after I retire, would any of my FERS retirement benefits be affected?
Q. I am a re-employed annuitant and the offset of my retirement has been waived. I work part time no more than 1,040 hours per year. I am being told that when I use my annual and sick leave, it is counted as work time and considered into the 1,040 hours. Please advise.
Q. I’m a full-time regular employee for the Postal Service. I work at a facility that is scheduled to close soon, resulting in the loss of my position. For the past several years, I also have been working part time for the Veterans Affairs health care system. If I transfer to a full-time position at VA, will my FERS contributions, annual and sick leave transfer, too? I’m 52 years old with 32 years of federal service. My minimum retirement age is 56 years.