Phased Retirement Approved For Postal, Federal Employees

August 2, 2012 by
Filed under: postal 

APWU Web News Article 93-2012, Aug. 2, 2012

A recent highway funding law contains a provision of special interest to postal and federal employees: The legislation authorizes federal agencies to allow full-time retirement-eligible employees to opt for “phased retirement.” The phased retirement provision will take effect when the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) issues regulations for implementing the new law.

Phased retirement will allow postal and federal employees to retire from a portion of their full-time employment and receive a pro-rated pension for their service. During phased retirement, federal employees may work 20 percent to 80 percent of their full-time schedule and continue to receive a pro-rated salary and pension credit for the time worked. Federal workers who opt for “phased retirement” must spend at least 20 percent of the time worked to mentor new employees, but USPS employees are exempt from this requirement.

When phased-in retirees fully retire, their annuities will be adjusted, increasing their lifetime retirement income.

The law provides an exception to the tax code so that phased-in retirees will not be taxed on their partial annuities.

Under current law, federal agencies may offer part-time employment to retirement-eligible workers, but the employees may not begin receiving accrued pension benefits while the work part time. Federal employees currently face one of three choices upon reaching retirement age:

  • Voluntarily retire and collect an annuity based on the pension computation formula;
  • Continue to work full time, in most cases increasing the number of service years used in calculating their pension, or
  • Voluntarily retire and return to federal employment as a re-employed annuitant.

The phased retirement provisions are part of a bill signed by President Obama on June 29 that extends federal aid highways, highway safety programs, and transit programs and extends the current interest rate on subsidized undergraduate student loans.

Comments

19 Comments on Phased Retirement Approved For Postal, Federal Employees

  1. Judy on Thu, 2nd Aug 2012 4:25 pm
  2. I find this very confusing, So is this a VERA?

  3. Mike on Thu, 2nd Aug 2012 5:14 pm
  4. I work with a lot of people who only work 20 percent of the time. It’s called `On The Job Retirement.’

  5. ENGLEBERTHUMPERDINC on Thu, 2nd Aug 2012 5:41 pm
  6. mike…lol, funny, probably true but still a good one.

    judy..no, this is not a vera (voluntary early retirement offer). it appears to me to be a new law which would allow postal employees who are retirement eligible to semi-retire and receive partial annuity/retirement while continuing to work
    for the post office one to four days a week and continuing to have this part-time work add to their future retirement annuity. i assume this may go over pretty big if
    people could retire and receive retirement check and still work 1 to 4 days a week and have that earnings to supplement income as well as add to future annuity.
    it seems to me that this would appeal greatly to people who want to retire but are just not sure if they can make it with the finances. this way, they would have that added income from working 1 to 4 days a a week. i have no idea how it is decided
    whether it is 1 or 4 days. donahoe mentioned this option in oct of 2011 when he spoke to a group of new york mailhandlers. the change of the law to allow this must have been in the works then.

  7. mass postal on Thu, 2nd Aug 2012 6:53 pm
  8. amazing as usual, trying to down size by 200,000 retirees but yet let them retire and not leave. better yet give them incentives to retire and work. postmasters are getting incentives, full pensions and an eleven dollar an hour raise to work part time. the usual spend billions to save hundreds.

  9. sue vandegenachte on Thu, 2nd Aug 2012 6:58 pm
  10. WHEN OUR DISTRICT LEFT THE MORONS UP FRONT ACTUALLY GOT 20,000 INCENTIVE, RETIREMENT AND UNEMPLOYMENT BECAUSE THEY WERE “FORCED” OUT OF THEIR JOBS. IF A CLERK OR MAILHANDLER TAKES AN INCENTIVE TO LEAVE DO THEY ALSO GET TO COLLECT UNEMPLOYMENT? I HAVE ALWAYS SAID, THE POST OFFICE HAS MONEY, JUST NOT FOR THE PEOPLE WHO ACTUALLY WORK THE MAIL. WHAT A JOKE THE PO IS. I HAVE NEVER WORKED AT A PLACE LIKE THE PO. IT IS LIKE WORKING FOR THE ENEMY. WATCH YOUR BACK AT ALL TIMES.

  11. Geo on Thu, 2nd Aug 2012 7:46 pm
  12. Postal employees are not in this category.

  13. lazy clerk on Thu, 2nd Aug 2012 11:47 pm
  14. I’m already semi-retired!

  15. Travis BIckle on Fri, 3rd Aug 2012 3:30 am
  16. We already have a better plan than this in my office. It’s called ROTC.
    RETIRED ON THE CLOCK.

  17. Judy on Fri, 3rd Aug 2012 4:10 am
  18. Postal employees are most certainly in this catagory

  19. Judy on Fri, 3rd Aug 2012 4:13 am
  20. Geo read first sentence of this article

  21. ellison on Fri, 3rd Aug 2012 6:35 am
  22. This sounds like something a lot of USPS will take once we know all the in and outs of the law. I will be one of them that way you can get your retirement and still work like many do go get a part-time job somewhere else so why not stay and work part-time at something you already know. I can go back to school and finish my Master’s love it tell me when I can start.

  23. ENGLEBERTHUMPERDINC on Fri, 3rd Aug 2012 9:55 am
  24. ‘sue vandegenachte’…you raise an interesting point i had not heard of before. are you sure that management folks were allowed to collect unemployment when they took the early out offer? maybe it is legal and would also be legal for the craft folks
    who took/take an early out? this is a sustantial amount of money if allowed.
    99 weeks of unemployment = a lot of beer money!
    my common sense says it would not be allowed, but i learned to never, ever, ever,
    use common sense when dealing with united states post office issues.
    anybody out there know for sure?

  25. ENGLEBERTHUMPERDINC on Fri, 3rd Aug 2012 10:02 am
  26. back to the unemployment collecting after taking an early out……
    could also be a “fraud” thing where management was quietly called
    to the side and someone whispered in their ear to go and apply for unemployment
    and the post office would not contest it. if craft employee applyed for unemployment then
    it may be a different story with management contesting the unemployment
    claim. i certainly don’t know that this is in fact what happened but i know i
    wouldn’t be surprised if was.

  27. slug 1 on Fri, 3rd Aug 2012 1:31 pm
  28. You call it R.O.T.C. Which is good. I call it having 8 hrs. of in house annual.

  29. wingman on Fri, 3rd Aug 2012 3:43 pm
  30. Phased in retirement sure ain’t in my plans. When I go, that’s it. Pfffffffffft. Goodbye and best of luck to all those trying to keep their jobs. I have a little over four years to go, and I figure the Service will be around. In fact, I don’t think it’ll disappear but it will be radically re-aligned. I want out before all that bullshit begins.
    As a long time regular carrier, I’ve always been very conscious of trying to keep my route up to date, without mail piling up in empty boxes, ignoring forward orders, etc. Sadly I’m seeing more and more TE’s and even some PTF’s coming in who mangle every route they’re on. They have no understanding of the CFS process, mark-up mail and have no real idea how to handle mail properly other than get it out the door and back as fast as possible. Lots of forwardable mail rots in boxes on routes that don’t have regular carriers. When I’m on leave and come back, all the undeliverable mail goes into CFS whether it’s an order, UTF, ANK, or otherwise. That is, if they don’t stuff it in boxes with bright pink vacant slips on them.
    The public thinks our service is lousy now, wait until the entire workforce is made of people like this. Us old timers are the last ones who know how to maintain a route, management couldn’t care less and don’t know how to, either. That huge decline in service will hurt us tremendously. People will go to the internet for absolutely everything then. Management better pull their heads out of their asses and realize it’ll take decent pay to insure any kind of accuracy. Any bets on if that’ll happen?

  31. mass postal on Fri, 3rd Aug 2012 5:40 pm
  32. correct again wingman, i’m outta here soon…… the workload for carriers will increase to the point nobody will make 30 years. i doubt 20. too physically demanding. retire and come back for more………not me brother.

  33. They can do that on Fri, 3rd Aug 2012 7:35 pm
  34. ROTC is what I’m doing!

  35. Jim Ritz, Jr on Sat, 4th Aug 2012 10:09 am
  36. I worked for the PO over 25 years. They are their own worst enemy. The problem is at the top not with the Letter Carriers, Clerks, Mailhandlers,etc. The day they let UPS take over the package industry was the day they committed suicide. They lost the package business and they lost the silver bullett business (express mail). Supervisors on the floor are trainned to harass employees to the point of either quitting or being fired. This used to be a great place to work. My advice is go on welfare before you take a job with the Post Office especially if you are a single parent and god forbid you should have kids. You will be sorry. Glad I am out and I never looked back.

  37. Doyle @ N.D.C. on Mon, 6th Aug 2012 12:50 pm
  38. This sounds interesting, Simi Retire collect Retirement pay but still work part time to build up more service time.