Ask The Experts: Retirement

By Reg Jones

Comp time in lieu of overtime

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Q: Should an employee always get a choice between comp time and overtime? Since overtime is 1½  your hourly wage, it seems comp time also should equal this in compensation. My nurse manager is offering comp time for those of us willing to come in early ( before our tour of 7-3:30 ). I would prefer overtime, but she says she can not offer this since it is not related to direct patient care. What are the rules/regulations on comp time and overtime in this and all matters. I am a GS nurse hourly-wage employee.

A: See www.opm.gov/pay/html/comp.html.

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Holiday time

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Q: When civilians work compressed schedules (such as six 12-hour shifts and one eight-hour shift for 80 hours in a two-week period), how many holidays are they entitled to have off, or can the agency make them work all the holidays?

A: Full-time employees are entitled to an “in lieu of” holiday when it falls on a nonworkday, even if they are on flexible or compressed work schedules. When that happens, the employee’s holiday is the basic workday immediately preceding the nonworkday. There are exceptions, one of which allows the head of an agency to designate a different “in lieu of” holiday for compressed-work-schedule employees, when that is necessary to prevent adverse agency impact.

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Part-time work and annuities

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Q: I recently had my retirement pay calculated. I was a part-timer during my first three years of employment — approximately 25 hours per week.  I subsequently have had 13 years of full-time federal employment. It appears that I will incur a 10 percent penalty in my retirement pay because of those part-time years. Do you know if that will always be true no matter how long I stay as a federal employee?

A: The longer you work, the smaller the reduction in your annuity will be.

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