Federal Retirement Fairness Act

The Federal Retirement Fairness Act (H.R. 4268), sponsored by Reps. Derek Kilmer (D-WA) and Tom Cole (R-OK), modifies the federal civilian service that is creditable service under the Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS). 

In particular, it expands the non-deduction service that may be creditable under FERS. Non-deduction service is federal service where an employee’s pay is not subject to retirement deductions (e.g., service under a temporary appointment). 

Right now, non-deduction service performed before January 1, 1989, is creditable under FERS as long as a deposit is made into the retirement fund to cover the period of non-deduction service. 

This bill permits non-deduction service performed on or after January 1, 1989, to be creditable under FERS so long as a deposit is made into the retirement fund. 

Many federal employees, including Postal Service employees, begin their federal/postal service in non-career positions before transitioning to career status. These employees, including letter carriers who were employed as casuals, transitional employees (TEs) or city carrier assistants (CCAs), do not receive retirement credit for their time spent in these positions. Because years employed as a non-career employee are not creditable under the Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS), employees who started in non-career positions and transition to career status must work longer to reach the required years of employment to receive full retirement benefits. 

The Federal Retirement Fairness Act (H.R. 4268), sponsored by Reps. Derek Kilmer (D-WA) and Tom Cole (R-OK), would modify what is considered creditable federal civilian service under FERS. This bill would allow these employees to make catch-up retirement contributions for time spent as non-career employees after Dec. 31, 1988, making such time creditable service under the FERS, and for other purposes. This legislation would allow letter carriers and other affected employees the opportunity to purchase retirement credit for the time they spent in these noncareer positions, providing greater retirement security. 

NALC supports H.R. 4268, which would allow certain federal employees to make catch-up retirement contributions for time spent as non-career employees after Dec. 31, 1988, thus making such time creditable service under FERS. 

 

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