Military Time

We've been asked about whether an individual should buy back the military time when they start with the Postal Service.  This is a personal choice; however, here is the information we received at training at the state convention on the topic.

  • CSRS & FERS employees may "purchase/buy back" their military time by making a deposit
  • Deposits must be made before retirement
  • CSRS deposit is 7% plus interest
  • FERS deposit is 3% plus interest

Should you buy your military time? CSRS employees

  • Service prior to 12/31/56 will count toward your service time and your annuity
  • Service beginning 1/1/57 is treated according to your civilian hire date
  • Hired after 10/1/82 you must make a deposit to receive credit
  • Hired before 10/1/82, service is automatically credited for retirement eligibility but not necessarily for annuity

Catch "62"

  • Will you be eligible for Social Security at age 62?
  • If so, you must make a deposit or you will lose those years when you reach 62 (or when you retire if after 62)
  • Served in the military after 1956
  • Hired by USPS before 10/1/82
  • OPM checks once - at age 62 or when you retire

If you decide to buy back your military time (CSRS & FERS), contact Shared Services                1-877-477-3273.  The forms necessary are CSRS (SF 2803A / DD214), FERS (SF 3108A / DD214)

Military Retired Pay

  • You must decide whether to waive your military retired pay when you retire
  • You cannot receive credit for the years in both your military and civilian reitrement
  • There are exceptions - Waiving military retirement is NOT NECESSARY if --
  1. Awarded based on a service connected disability incurred in combat with an enemy
  2. Disability caused by an instrumentality of war
  3. Based on reserve service (10 USC 12731-12739)

Waiving Military retirement considerations

  • Compare value of combining the years with the value of keeping the separate
  • Consider the cost to buy back the years

Cost to Credit Non-Career Federal Service

  • CSRS - Generally 7% of basic pay of the non-career service plus interest
  • FERS - Generally 3% of basic pay of the non-career service plus interest

To make a deposit for non-career Federal Service

  • Call USPS Shared Services, 1-877-477-3273, option 5
  • Complete SF 2803A (CSRS) or SF 3108 (FERS)