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VA (Department of Veterans Affairs)

The United States has the most comprehensive system of assistance for veterans of any nation in the world. This benefits system traces its roots back to 1636, when the Pilgrims of Plymouth Colony were at war with the Pequot Indians. The Pilgrims passed a law which stated that disabled soldiers would be supported by the colony. The establishment of the Veterans Administration came in 1930 when Congress authorized the President to "consolidate and coordinate Government activities affecting war veterans."

This forum also includes the Veterans Health Administration (VHA).

Perhaps you are working for the VA or interested in working for the VA. Here is a forum to share your experience with the VA.

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frankgonzalez  
#21 Posted : Wednesday, June 8, 2022 5:23:02 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: someoldguy Go to Quoted Post
If a person retired as an E-6 (and there's more than a few who do) then it is almost certainly worth it to do the buyback. E-7 I think it is a tossup, but I know a couple guys who did it. Above E-7 probably not worth it from what I've heard from folks who ran their own numbers.

And where I am you might see more of a no-retired-chief left behind club... seems like these days the O-6's go the contractor route.
I'm a retired E-6, and until recently, the numbers were a wash...if I buy back my time, the amount I would pay compared to the increase in retired civil service annuity, the time until I have made back the buy back would be a little too long for me. But...hey, I end up as SES, then it may be a different answer. But I also don't plan on going much past 62 (to get the 1.1 vs 1% multiple).

The other consideration of the past few years...DoD gets their funding pretty easily. Add in the government shut downs, my retired mil pay came in as DoD was funded which made certain I wasn't hurting like others were. So...having the two separate income avenues is a comfort.

You should have voted Cthulu...the greatest of all Evils
smithandjones  
#22 Posted : Friday, June 10, 2022 4:55:46 AM(UTC)

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Buy the time immediately. Otherwise they add interest on the amount and that can add up. I did 4 years in the military - then a few years later worked one year with the Federal Government - then over almost 13 years later came back to the Federal Government for going on 11 years now - had to pay interest from the date I was first eligible to buy the time. Still worth it but 13 years of interest amounted to an 80% surcharge.
Ferndog76  
#23 Posted : Monday, June 13, 2022 9:33:41 AM(UTC)
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Can anyone explain to me the technical aspects of buying back our time? For instance, how does paying the government for time I served allow me to add to my retirement? It just kind of strikes me as odd. I know we do it and I have yet to do it myself. When you (or I should say I) started as an employee for the federal government they automatically added my time for the leave benefits. So it confuses me that it would not be something automatically added also. I am no financial guru and this is why I am asking. if someone can explain it in Layman's terms.
HoosierDaddy  
#24 Posted : Monday, June 13, 2022 1:03:44 PM(UTC)

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Lets say you have 4 years military time and 30 years of civilian service.

If you don't buyback your military time at your minimum retirement age your pension would be 30% of your high 3 average.

Buying back your military time would increase your pension to 34% of your high 3 average.
You can't fix stupid, but you can vote it out. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DG29PVMtAWE
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Ferndog76 on 6/14/2022(UTC)
smithandjones  
#25 Posted : Monday, June 13, 2022 1:16:38 PM(UTC)

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To put it as simply as I can - as a federal employee both you and your employer pay some amount to fund your future pension. When you were in the military you did not pay any amount to fund a future federal employee pension. As a veteran, it is a great benefit to be able to make those payments later in time and get credit for time served. But giving that pension time to you completely unfunded does not make fiscal sense to the already overburdened federal pension plans.
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Ferndog76 on 6/14/2022(UTC)
Ferndog76  
#26 Posted : Tuesday, June 14, 2022 9:23:32 AM(UTC)
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Thank you Smith. I hadn't thought about the fact that no money was going towards a pension in the military. Makes complete sense. And I agree, we should never be given anything for free. Appreciate the response. And thank you too Hoosier for a deeper explanation. I've got a lot to learn!
FlatAffect  
#27 Posted : Sunday, June 19, 2022 1:06:25 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: someoldguy Go to Quoted Post
Note that if you are currently collecting (or expect to collect) a reserve component retirement, then you do not have to waive retired pay. And you still get to collect that retirement check until you start collecting federal civil service retirement.

Somebody said most active duty retirees would be better off not buying back their time. This depends on a number of factors, not the least of which is what grade you expect to be when you retire from federal civil service. But if you retired above the grade of E-6 then it probably worth taking a close look at the numbers.



I left AD after about 10 years and I was not high ranking at all, so it makes perfect sense to buy-back my time provided I am staying with the VA.

DFAS told me I have up until 3 years to decide before I start to pay interest on it.

I'm currently a GS-09 and will bump up automatically to GS-11 after my probationary year.

After that, it's whether I want to be in leadership or not (GS-12).


roger.d  
#28 Posted : Friday, June 24, 2022 7:13:51 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: FlatAffect Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: someoldguy Go to Quoted Post
Note that if you are currently collecting (or expect to collect) a reserve component retirement, then you do not have to waive retired pay. And you still get to collect that retirement check until you start collecting federal civil service retirement.

Somebody said most active duty retirees would be better off not buying back their time. This depends on a number of factors, not the least of which is what grade you expect to be when you retire from federal civil service. But if you retired above the grade of E-6 then it probably worth taking a close look at the numbers.



I left AD after about 10 years and I was not high ranking at all, so it makes perfect sense to buy-back my time provided I am staying with the VA.

DFAS told me I have up until 3 years to decide before I start to pay interest on it.

I'm currently a GS-09 and will bump up automatically to GS-11 after my probationary year.

After that, it's whether I want to be in leadership or not (GS-12).




If you haven't done so, do all the paperwork to get your earnings statement from the military now. Submit everything to your HR and get the amount you need to deposit. Then you can wait until the month or so before the deadline to mail in the check.
Socialist governments traditionally do make a financial mess. They always run out of other people’s money. --Margaret Thatcher
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