Editorial: Does the Postal Service Really Want Early Retirements?

In recent VERAs the Postal Service issued FERS annuity estimates that omitted the employee’s FERS annuity supplement. The FERS annuity supplement is often nearly equal the basic annuity amount. Was that to discourage early retirements so they can justify weakening the no-layoff clause in upcoming contract negotiations?

The method of calculating the FERS annuity supplement is explained by Robert F. Benson in What are “Deemed” Salaries in the FERS Annuity Supplement? If you have the necessary personal information, his software at http://www.fedbens.us/ will calculate the exact amount of your FERS annuity supplement. The PDF Attachmenthas an example.

Most postal employees in FERS are eligible for the annuity supplement after age 55 with 30 years of service, but in a VERA, RIF, or involuntary transfer over 50 miles that requirement is reduced to 20 years–a significant bonus. Federal law enforcement officers, like Postal Inspectors and OIG, are eligible for the FERS annuity supplement at age 50 with 20 years of service.

OPM’s Handbook, Chapter 40, Section 40A2.1-3.N, requires the Postal Service to furnish this information for eligible FERS employees.

The Postal Service also neglects to mention another advantage in an early retirement. The funds in your Thrift Savings Plan may be withdrawn after retirement and age 55 without an IRS early withdrawal penalty. If you retire before age 55, you can avoid an IRS early withdrawal penalty by choosing an annuity. See Important Tax Information About Payments From Your TSP Account

Don Cheney
Auburn WA

18 thoughts on “Editorial: Does the Postal Service Really Want Early Retirements?

  1. Hey Billy,

    If you’re a moron and a jackass, you might want to apply for the management job I just retired from.

  2. I am willing to wait it out for a year to see if any positions open either through the restructuring or people retiring. I just don’t want to have false hopes. Any advice?

  3. When I had my phone interview concerning the early retirement the person specifically told me I wasn’t eligible for the supplement until I turned 56, So what is the truth? Probably more people would have left if they had only given us accurateinformation. I was offered the early out twice and amazingly the second time the figure they gave me for my monthly retirement amount was alot lower than the first one I had gotten earlier.

  4. There’s a hold on everything!! When all the changes are done; I doubt very seriously that they will hire, promote anyone. the salary may stay the same or minimum increase.

  5. I just got hired at my locale PO as a temp carrier. What are my chances of being hired as a full time employee?

  6. I just retire several months ago and I am so happy to be out, by the way I was a mid level manager. It is not all managements fault that the USPS is in such bad shape. Lazy employees who think they are over worked need to go and find a job that they feel will pay the same for less work, not possible. If your job and working conditions are so bad then quit. you know what they say no balls no blue chips. Take some responsibility for yourself

  7. I’m 54, worked 22 years. The PO is not what it was 20 yr.s ago. I use to take pride in my work.I would bust my butt to insure customer satisfaction. Now it’s all about numbers. Morale is low and no one seems to care.I’m ready for an early out.. But because I want it so bad.. it wont happen.. Just my luck..

  8. we would like to know what article you saw and where they are printed that john potter made that statement regardig abuse of employees because we can.

    anyone can answer, thanks

  9. Things are very scary… I get the distinct impression that the low level supervisors are being coached in harassing employees in order to force confrontation, and thus dismissal…. It goes to the level they almost follow one to the bathroom and we may be told next how many times to wipe… It’s insulting, esp. coming from some punk kid who can’t use proper grammar and has 7 years in to my 26 1/2….. Very scary times………I consulted with my attorney now……

  10. Did anyone read the FERS or CSRS handbook?
    Why must everything be spoon fed to each employee? I am an employee. I educate myself and READ. Lite Blue and usps.com. opm.gov all have and had information about SS supplement, etc, etc.

  11. if you’ve been following the daily posts, you’ll see the p.o. states they have no intention of offering early outs, yet there seems to be a strong push back regarding rate increase(s) and 5 day delivery. it (vera) might not be this year, but it’s my expectation that something’s gotta give. wish the public knew that 80% labor figure is mostly management, and not the stiffs who actually move the mail. glad to see the truth (of private sector vs. p.o. workers pay) is finally surfacing.

  12. had i been given all the pertinent information i would have left with the last vera. now i pray they offer another as soon as possible. paleeese

  13. I wonder if it’s typical incompetence. Would’t it be better to get the higher paid VERA off payroll than be able to layoff the junior ones who are lower on pay scale?? I think there is a lot of ignorance with the FERS supplement. Many of the FERS I work with have no idea of this component of their retirement (let alone its amount at early retirement)

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