Employees who accept an early retirement offer from the SSA must leave the agency by September 1, following a one-month window in which the agency made such offers to all employees except administrative law judges, a position for which the government is going to conduct one of its rare recruiting drives.

Similar offers in recent years have resulted in about 200-300 employees per year accepting the opportunity to retire at any age with 25 years of service or as early as age 50 with 20 years. However, the offers have not been accompanied by buyouts–which boost the acceptance rate but impose an additional up-front cost to an agency.

The SSA has been operating under tight budgets for many years that have spurred hiring restrictions and a shift of more services from in-person to online or telephone delivery.