Military Service Deposit for short term

Radork238

Newcomer
May 6, 2019
5
0
1
I have my info for buying back military time, and am at a point where I can pull the trigger. I'm unsure if I should, because I don't really understand FERS.

I'm in a situation where I may only be able to work as a Fed for a little over a year if there aren't any jobs available where we move. My wife is the bread winner anyway, so I might not want to work 20+ years, even if a job is available.

I heard 5 years is the mark to be vested in FERS, so 4 years military plus one year ATSS should get me past that point. Honestly, I don't know exactly what good being vested is. Would I be able to "retire" at that 5 year point, and collect a tiny pension once I hit retirement age?
 

planetalkerkp

Senior Member
Jun 15, 2008
190
1
18
Alabama
I'm not sure but I think you have to actually work for 5 years in order to be vested. If you buy back your military time it is used to compute your retirement, which is basically 1.1% of your high three times your years working for the Feds. I think that is correct.
 

Radork238

Newcomer
May 6, 2019
5
0
1
After talking to BOC, that sounds correct. The agent I talked to made it sound like an employee can get the deposit refunded if they exit federal service before the 5 working years. That said, it sounds like I can make the deposit, enjoy the increased annual leave, and avoid interest if I do stay in, and if I have to quit, I get it back.

Does that sound reasonable?
 

NovemberEcho

Epic Member
Dec 8, 2010
4,388
68
48
Long Island
I don’t know about being refunded or anything, but it’s def 5 years civilian time to be vested. You’ll also get the higher amount of annual/sick leave regardless if you buy it back or not.
 

Scotter

Senior Member
Jan 4, 2010
242
3
18
Southwest Regional Office
If you don't plan on making it a career, why make the deposit in the first place?

Take the money you would otherwise deposit into the .gov and buy an IRA.

It just seems like a waste to me to pay that deposit just to get "vested" for 5yrs and have a small FAA retirement fund.

Just my .02 cents.

Scotter