Sick Leave Crediting Issue Addressed

OPM has clarified its policy on recrediting of unused sick leave by employees who retire under FERS and who then are later reemployed by the government.

Traditionally, at retirement only CSRS employees received credit for unused sick leave as time actually served in the calculation of their retirement benefits. There were only limited exceptions allowing FERS employees to get full or partial credit, involving prior service and employment in certain VA medical positions. However, a law enacted in late 2009 changed that policy, allowing all FERS employees to get credit for half of their unused sick leave as time served, for retirements or new survivor benefit applications from October 28, 2009 through December 31, 2013.

Starting in calendar year 2014, unused sick leave will be fully creditable for all FERS employees at retirement.

However, questions arose regarding policy for those who retire during that period and then return to federal employment. OPM in a recent memo to agencies said that in that situation, those who return will be recredited with the sick leave time that was not converted into time served.