Federal Employees News Digest

Federal Benefits Q&A

Question: "I joined the Reserves circa 2001 after being hired as a DOD civilian in 1997. Last year, I was mobilized and did 10 months of LWOP-US (or "Absent-Uniformed Service" as it's now called) from May 2013 to March 2104, followed by two months of LWOP. Is there any benefit to buying back that LWOP-US time if I am not retiring in the next three years?"


Answer: Yes, there is a benefit of making a deposit for ("buying back") your military service. If you make a full deposit between now and March 2017, you will owe no interest (your deposit will be equal to 3 percent of your total military base pay). In so doing, you will get full credit for both FERS retirement eligibility and annuity computation.

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Edward A. Zurndorfer Certified Financial Planner
Mike Causey Columnist
Tom Fox VP for Leadership and Innovation, Partnership for Public Service
Mathew B. Tully Legal Analyst

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