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Retirement Planning

Whether you are close to federal employee retirement or just starting out in your career, this is the place to share ideas with your federal colleagues on creating a secure financial foundation.

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#1 Posted : Saturday, September 14, 2019 4:29:36 PM(UTC)

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Hello everyone,

I was told that this may be a better place to post my question about a retirement issue. Hopefully, I'm able to get some guidance on an erroneous administrative error.

I was hired in 2015 as a Law Enforcement Officer at the Dept of Commerce. They placed me in the incorrect retirement system category within FERS. They placed in the FERS system which required me to contribute 1.3% of my pay toward retirement. However, I should have been placed in the “FERS-FRAE” system which would require me to contribute 4.9% of my salary. Now that I’m at the Department of Agriculture, they did not catch the error until this month. It has been nearly 5 years since the error has been made between both agencies.

Since this is an erroneous error on two agencies part and in no way would a reasonable employee know that there are multiple retirement categories with different contribution rates within “FERS”, would this constitute a FERCCA eligibility? If so, what are the steps for me to take? If this is not qualifying for FERCCA, what are my options? I would like to respectfully request that either my agency or OPM absolve the indebtedness. I just don't know where to begin and there wasn't much help from HR other than they're going to put me in the correct category (FERS-FRAE) and that would generate a bill that I would have to pay (roughly $13k).

Any help on this issue is appreciated, thank you.
#2 Posted : Sunday, September 15, 2019 8:12:11 AM(UTC)

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I think it would be better to post this in the Federal Benefits Q&A for Ed to answer.


Edited by user Sunday, September 15, 2019 5:06:40 PM(UTC)  | Reason: add link.

Socialist governments traditionally do make a financial mess. They always run out of other people’s money. --Margaret Thatcher
Polar Bear  
#3 Posted : Sunday, September 22, 2019 8:41:54 AM(UTC)
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Reasonable is a funny word. If I were you I would certainly gather a lot of facts when you present your argument. Considering I, a lowly newb, was briefed during orientation for both jobs on what the difference was, and it's on the employee to verify LES; you 'may' run into issues. BTW, it's 4.4% (unless you're required to add an additional .5 under some LEO thing). I wish you luck (and this is in no way an attempt at some reliable HR answer)

Edited by user Sunday, September 22, 2019 8:43:41 AM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

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