A warning for CSRS spouses


Two retirement security groups are highlighting a little-known provision in the federal government’s rules that could hurt some spouses or children of federal employees under the Civil Service Retirement System. If a CSRS employee leaves the federal government, but dies before applying for a pension, that employee’s spouses, former spouses or children would not receive a survivor annuity, the Pension Rights Center and Women’s Pension Project note.

In a letter sent yesterday to the acting director of the Office of Personnel Management, the groups asked the agency to send a notice to CSRS employees reminding them of this wrinkle.

Survivors of Federal Employees Retirement System employees who leave the government and die before applying for a pension are eligible to receive a survivor annuity. Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, introduced a bill in 2007 that would have ensured CSRS employees’ survivors would get an annuity regardless of when the employee left federal service, but it died in committee.


About Author

Leave A Reply