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Chances are that as a CSRS employee, you’ve had retirement on your radar screen for a number of years. By definition, only those first hired by the government before 1984 can be covered by CSRS—or its variant CSRS Offset—meaning that just about every current CSRS employee is near, or already beyond, one of the combinations of age and years of service needed to qualify for voluntary retirement.

This special report is designed to help you as your retirement nears. Retirement is a life-altering decision, yet many employees move into it less prepared than they should be. Make the decision to retire—or to wait to retire—with the kind of solid basis of knowledge that such an important decision merits.

Know the Value of Professional Help

There is a body of “common knowledge” among federal employees about retirement. Unfortunately, some of it is wrong, based on misinformation passed along by well-meaning colleagues—and, yes, sometimes by federal agencies—or just plain wishful thinking.

Figuring a retirement benefit involves a fairly simple calculation using your time of service and high-3 salary amount. But that is just the beginning. There are many hidden traps and considerations in retirement. Knowing them beforehand may help drive your decisions on those benefits, and indeed your retirement decision itself. Not knowing them until it’s too late could come at a great shock and cost to you and your family.

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