The Federal Employee Retirement System (FERS) is the primary retirement system for federal employees.
Federal employees under FERS have several retirement options, including disability retirement, early retirement, and immediate retirement.
In this piece, we’ll explore FERS immediate retirement in greater depth. Specifically, we’ll discuss the immediate retirement fund and how to fill out the required FERS retirement forms.
Contact our talented employment law firm if you have any questions or need legal assistance with your retirement application.
Understanding the Basic Eligibility Requirements for FERS Immediate Retirement
The Office of Personnel Management describes immediate retirement as an annuity that starts within 30 days of your last work day. It is one of five retirement options under FERS.
Not everyone is eligible for immediate retirement. Instead, there are age and experience requirements you must meet to qualify. If you have at least 30 years of eligible government service, you can retire at the government’s minimum retirement age (MRA).
The MRA varies according to your year of birth. Those born before 1948 have an MRA of 55, while those born after 1970 have an MRA of 57. As this OPM chart shows, if you were born between 1948 and 1970, your MRA will be between 55 and 57.
If you have 20 years of eligible service, you can retire at 60. And if you are 62, you can obtain immediate retirement after only five years of eligible government service.
Although you can technically obtain immediate retirement with only ten years of government service once you arrive at your MRA, it will not be a full benefit. Instead, it will be reduced by 5% for each year that you are under 62.
Completing an Application for Immediate Retirement (FERS)
The essential form for an immediate retirement application is Standard Form (SF) 3107. There are several parts to the SF 3107, and completing it requires your agency’s involvement.
Fortunately, the form comes with instructions, and you can complete the main portion of the form yourself. However, you’ll need to know:
- The details of your entire federal career;
- Spouse’s personal identifying information (like their social security number);
- The kind of annuity you wish to receive;
- Your military retirement pay information (if you retired from the military); and
- Information about your federal health insurance benefits.
Your agency will complete a copy of SF 3107-1, a certified record of your federal service.
If you select a spouse to receive benefits, they must submit a copy of SF 3107-2 to certify their acceptance of the annuity arrangements.
Do I Need a Lawyer to File for FERS Immediate Retirement?
No. It is possible to complete your FERS application on your own. That said, having an attorney significantly eases the application process. There are several reasons for this.
First, an attorney can help you understand your eligibility for immediate retirement under FERS, including age and service requirements.
They can also assist in calculating your retirement benefits so that you completely understand your entitlements.
Once you are ready to apply for retirement, an attorney can review your application for errors or complete it themselves.
This reduces the chance that you will face delays or a rejected application because of an accidental oversight. Moreover, an attorney can interface with your agency to streamline the application process.
This service is essential because agency staffing departments regularly fail to complete a copy of SF 3107-1. Or they respond slowly to incoming applications unless there is an outside party prodding them along.
In the worst scenarios, agencies can sabotage your retirement application because of illegal discrimination and retaliation.
An attorney can rectify this issue by holding your agency accountable and initiating litigation if necessary.
We’re Ready to Give Your Career the Stellar Ending It Deserves
After years or decades of dedicated government service, the last thing you want is a big fight over your retirement.
Whether you need assistance understanding your anticipated annuity or help pushing your application along, the Federal Employment Law Firm of Aaron D. Wersing, PLLC, is standing by.
Because we represent federal employees exclusively, we have extensive experience with various retirement applications. We also prioritize client communication and representation.
When you work with us, you’re not just a number. You’re family. Call us today or contact us online to set up your first appointment.