Understanding Your Benefits Is Critical


Your FERS pension a very vital part to your future retirement.  It is super important that you understand how your pension works and how your pension possibly increases every year of service.  At FEB we strive to maximize your pension possibilities helping you understand things like the 10% bonus program, social security, TSP and learning how all these combined make up your retirement.

AS a CSRS employee, I’m sure you feel like you’ve been working forever and are ready to retire.

The CSRS Pension is a great lifetime income, but one needs to understand the issues relating to Social Security who have 40 quarters.  This is called the Windfall Elimination. 

One needs to make sure they maximize their pension income up to 80% plus sick leave.

CSRS employees who are widows or widowers and are collecting their spousal benefits from Social Security need to understand how this income benefit may change at retirement.

Your TSP is one of the most important parts of your retirement preparation.  Tsp is so important because it can be controlled by you.  Your contributions, fund management and discipline to contribute will determine how well your TSP grows.  It is important to be educated on your options with the five funds, lifecycles, or Mutual fund window in order to properly decide the appropriate areas to invest that best fits your risk tolerance.

Social security can possibly be an important tool when it comes to your retirement.  It is important for you to know things like the earnings test, the soonest you can take SS, what is my full ss and what ages can I take SS in order to maximize it.  It’s important to get SS right the first time!

Your FEGLI (Federal Employee Group Life Insurance) may serve a very important role when it comes to protecting your family.  FEGLI has four main options, Basic, A, B and C.  It is important that you know each of these options and how they can potentially help you and your family. 

While active military, you are potentially carrying the SGLI (Service Group Life Insurance) that is priced at a reasonable rate, however when you retire the program goes to VGLI (Veterans Group Life Insurance). The VGLI rates move to a 5 Yr. step and rates increase each year.  Addressing this during your active time is critical as your life insurance may be vital to you and your family.

Those of you that have previous Military time and did not retire and have gone to work in the Civil Service field can buy that military time to enhance your Civil Service pension. Active time with reservist can be bought.  Buying military time back includes two vital steps that take a total of 5-6 months.  Before retiring it is very important that you have your military time bought back so you can increase your Civil Service pension for the rest of your life.

Before quitting your job or being phased out by your department, you should become familiar with the FERS disability. Disability benefits under FERS are computed in different ways depending on the retiree's age and amount of service at retirement. In addition, FERS disability retirement benefits are recomputed after the first twelve months and again at age 62 if the annuitant is under age 62 at the time of disability retirement.  It is good to become educated before making any vital career changes.