USPS: Preparing For Change – What Is A Voluntary Early Retirement Authority

USPS is expected to announce that it will offer Voluntary Early Retirement to select groups of postal employees on March 25, 2011.


So what’s a VERA?

A “voluntary early retirement authority” (VERA) temporarily lowers age and service requirements for retirement. It’s an administrative tool USPS has used in the past as part of an overall redesign or restructuring.

The Postal Service must request approval for a VERA from the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) before making an offer of early retirement to its employees. OPM approval also will include a period of time during which the option will remain available.

Employees covered by the Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS) or the Federal Employee Retirement System are eligible for voluntary early retirement if they are at least 50 years of age with 20 years or more of service, or any age with at least 25 years of service. A minimum of 5 years must be creditable civilian — not military — service. Employees may use their time in the military to meet the balance of service required for eligibility.

CSRS employees must have been employed under CSRS for at least 1 out of the last 2 years, but the service need not be continuous. Eligibility criteria for all employees must be met by the VERA retirement effective date.

If the Postal Service announces a voluntary early retirement (VER), and if your position is covered in the group receiving the offer and you meet eligibility requirements, a VERA Offer Letter and Annuity Estimate will be mailed to your address of record. To receive notifications in a timely fashion, make sure USPS has your current mailing address on file.

You can change or update your address by clicking on “Change of Address” in the Employee Apps – Quick Links section at the center of the LiteBlue home page.

VERA-eligible employees who decide to accept an early retirement offer can apply by completing and submitting the required documents by the deadline specified in the Offer Letter. Eligible employees who decide not to accept the offer don’t have to do anything.

Click here for more information about VERA.

39 thoughts on “USPS: Preparing For Change – What Is A Voluntary Early Retirement Authority

  1. I will be 58 years old in 2 months and will have 27 years by September. I calculated my supplemental to be $919 and pension approximately $1190 a month before tax if there is no penalty for age. From what I’ve heard(rumor likely) is on the next early out there would be no penalty because of age. I even heard a rumor that FERS people may get credit for 30 years if they have a minimum of 25 years, which would amount to $1,300 a month before tax. Who the hell would want to get out before 62 if they’re penalized 5% for each year younger? Has anyone else heard this?


  3. I am al etter carrier in ny for 27 years. We heard the early out is 5 years added to years of service woth noe penalties and $5,000 If anyone else can confirm this please post ot let us know ekat site has any info as of march 20 2011 thanks

  4. the minimum retirement age to recieve the supplement is 56 for most of us where did you get 58? you would qualify for this under a vera also you lose the sup at age 62 when min ss kicks in so if you do not want to recieve ss at 62 maybe you should wait …nnooooooo fuck em i am going .

  5. Time to go at age 52 with 31 years in April,2011.I really had enough.Management just don’t get it.I would go if they added the 3 years to my age with my 31 years of service.Let the younger carriers deal with the nonsense.Maybe they could make regular instead of PTF forever at this juncture.I have my 400+A/L.I can leave now and move out of NYC to boot too.

  6. I’ve come to the conclusion that it is best to get out now while you have something to get. Everybody’s crying broke. If you’ve worked 20 or 30 years, all you don’t have you might not get. Get off these stressful jobs, and rest your minds and bodies. You want to be healthy and retired not giving your check to a pharmacy. Your government’s next move will be to raise the retirement age then you’ll really be stuck. They hope you’ll drop dead before you get a dime. Think about all the jokers out there who’ve never worked, they’re doing fine. I’ll trim my budget and take my chances. See you on the other side. If they offer a VERA, I’m out!

  7. J Smith Supplemental

    You cannot qaulify for the supplemental until you are 58, because you do not have the 30 years in needed at MRA and are not yet 60 years of age.

  8. This is for Rick

    A: If you receive a TSP distribution before you reach age 59 1/2, in addition to the regular income tax, you may have to pay an early withdrawal penalty tax equal to 10 percent of any portion of the distribution not transferred or rolled over

  9. Those looking for the supplemental information can find it on the NALC website in the retirement section, a very good explanation. In a nut shell, 30 years of service at the minimum retirement age of 56. 20 years of service at 60 years of age and one other requirement that affects those people over 60 with very little service time. The supplemental is a % based on what your SS will be at the minimum age you can collect, which is 62. You receive a letter every year around your birthday that spells out how much you can collect at certain age milestones. Full SS benefit is 67 for most. The number 40 is used as a baseline in figuring you supplemental. If you meet the qualifications for the supplemental you would take the number of years you worked and divide by 40. if you worked 30 years, it works out to .75 or 75%. If you find your SS letter you can then figure out what 75% of the amount you were to collect at 62 is, and this total is your supplemental. If that amount is 1700 at 62, your supplemental would be 1275 a month. I think a 30 year FERS is around 1300 so you walk out the door around 2575 before any withdraw from TSP, which you must be 59.5 to access without penalty. 55 is the minimum age to collect your FERS annuity which is different from TSP. Should you seperate from the service and want to remove your money from the TSP account you need to have somebody do this for you. If not done properly all the money in your account could qualify as earned income since this is a before tax account, and you could end up owing income tax on the whole amount in your account. If you were to do this incorrectly before you were aged 59.5 you would also owe an early withdraw penalty on top of the income tax.

    One last thing about the supplemental. If you decide to take it, once you turn 62 that total would switch over to the amount you were scheduled to receive in SS at 62. You are only locked into the percentage until you reach age. If you got hired at 18 and were 58 I can only assume you would get the same amount in supplemetal as you would when you turn 62. Please refer to the NALC website and the FERS retirement section for more info.

  10. Y’all be funny. Take what ya signed on for all those years ago or stay until full retirement. Food is up, gas is up, utilities are up,, but the nigger you voted for says there is no reason for a cola now for 2 years.

  11. Great news, recently the post office has making lots of changes to cut workforce, I am qualify for VER and would like to retire, and give the younger generation a chance.

  12. I do not know where one of the bloggers comes from ,who said the pay was good.But here in the northeast,it stinks.Further more,are they offering any money like they did for those in management?At least some of us can pay a little to our credit card compannies,because of what we get paid.

  13. city carriears milk the clock but thats ok when there is 250k a year worth of management that run a station that has at times 4 sups with just 3 clerks in the building everybody on street an the sups r just tryin 2 figure out whats 4 lunch
    get rid of the stupid shit called management
    im rural route just run it fast as can but union not 4 us we dont get 10 min breaks built in on count an now we have 2 do all this scannin crap with no contrack sorry vent i have a job peace 2 all

  14. The last VERA came with a 15 thousand dollar incentive and they got some people to bite but not the numbers they were looking for. Save the money and just add a few years and waive the age penalty for CSRS and you’ll get your numbers and then some.

  15. Exactly what is the “supplemental social security benefit”? I am a FERS employee eligable for the early out. Also, what happens to this benefit once I reach the age of 62?

  16. Are the estimates going to include the Social Security Supplement so an accurate picture can be had???

    Probably not…we all know about the compentency of the USPS….

  17. 53 years old with 28 years service, 1900 hours of sick leave……Let me off this sinking ship…..Management bunch of complete morons

  18. I am a clerk with 31 years at amc/jfk, I wish the Postal Service will give me say 4 or 5 years giving me now 35 or 36 years i then will leave and they will get a lot of Civil service retireiment people out a lot of clerks have at least 34 35 years so with an extra few years towards retirement a lot of clerks will leave..

  19. I m ready to retire but I need some big bucks to pay my mortgage. I like to serve my fellow American public but don’t like sup. and manage. who are the f————-ing
    doing nothing just sitting on their big butts.

  20. this is what i understand. take the amount that you would get from the social security statement that you are mailed.([for example mine is 1453) divide years of service (mine is 26) by 40. result is .65 . .65 x 1453 =944.

  21. all of you waiting for a vera should be ashamed of yourselves. Look at all the postal service has given you over the years. Ask not what the postal service can do for you, but what you can do for the postal service.

  22. I’m 52 with 26 years. I am waiting for March 25th to see what the offer might be. If I get the offer, I’m going. If they don’t make an offer, I’m going. It is just not what it used to be. Numbers are much more important than people. I just want to go home and live modestly. I also am thankful for the USPS allowing me to have a good life.
    Now I’m just ready for a VER!

  23. You do not need to be 591/2 to access you thrift. You only need to be 55 the year you separate from th po

  24. make sure you are truly retiring and not just quitting and waiting for the years needed to catch up with you. things such as the early withdrawal penalties if you are less than 59 1/2 on your thrift savings . or the supplemental social security benefit is substantially less than if you can wait out the 62 yrs of age . what concerns me even more is the looming question of what will they change after you’ve already bailed?


  26. Fers retiree’s only get 1/2 of their sick time credited to their retirement if they retire before 2014.

  27. I am so happy that they are going to offer another early out. There are a lot of people that have really decided to let the PO go! Nothing like it use to be! What I would like to know is, if they are going to offer any money with this early out? What they should also do is, offer a no penalty to those of us that have the time but not the full age. I am sure a lot more of us would jump at that also, (including me)….lol

  28. I am grateful for years of service the Post Office has given to me. Good pay and
    Benefits has allowed me to live a good life. I have a pension, health benefits. And
    I can afford to retire in my 50’s. Please offer the Vera. I am ready and
    Willing to retire and let others stay, if they choose. Thank you APWU and
    USPS. Please, Vera now.

  29. Jj, grammar, grammar, grammar. Also, S/L is counted toward retirement in some contracts. Hope you can understand my sentence structure.

  30. I qualify in the group at least 50 years and more than 20 yrs of service, however, what about my sick leave. I have those leave more than 1300 hrs right now. If they credit those leaves for my retirement, then I will retire…if they don’t , they have to forget about my retirement.

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