2021 Federal Employees Handbook

$14.95

Just Published for 2021: The Federal Employees Handbook is the ultimate desk reference for federal employees!

What's inside

Written by our veteran team of experts, the 2021 Federal Employees Handbook contains the very latest critical information on your federal pay and benefits and workplace policies and will help you take full advantage of your opportunities and avoid costly mistakes.

Overview: Pay and Other Compensation, Retirement, Health Insurance, Government Management

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Chapter 1: Pay Systems 

General Schedule

Wage System

Senior Executive Service

Other Major Salary Systems

Chapter 2: Pay and Compensation Policies 

Administratively Uncontrollable Overtime

Availability Premium Pay

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Awards

Creditability of Different Types of Pay in Pay Actions and Benefits

Danger Pay and Post Differentials

Deductions from Pay

Environmental Differential Premium Pay

Evacuation Payments

Extended Assignment Incentives

Flexible Spending Accounts

Foreign Language Pay

Grade Retention

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Hazardous Duty Premium Pay

Holiday Premium Pay

Hostile Fire Pay

Lump-Sum Payments for Annual Leave

Night Premium Pay

On-Call Duty

Overseas Allowances

Overtime

Pay Limits

Pay Retention

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Pay Upon Promotion

Physicians Comparability Allowances

Recruitment, Relocation and Retention Payments

Severance Pay

Special Rates

Standby Premium Pay

Student Loan Repayments

Sunday Premium Pay

Uniform Allowances

Waivers of Collections

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Within-Grade Increases

Chapter 3: General Employment and Workplace Policies 

Adoption Benefits

AIDS/HIV

Alternative Work Schedules

Child Care

Combat Zone Assignments

Combined Federal Campaign

Court Orders

Death Benefits Upon Death in the Line of Duty

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Disabilities

Disciplinary Actions

Discrimination

Domestic Partners

Educational Credentials

Emergency Procedures

Employee Assistance Programs

Financial Claims

Furloughs

Garnishment

Genetic Information

Health and Fitness Programs

Hiring

Labor-Management Relations

Liability Insurance

Merit System Principles

Obtaining Personnel Records

Official Duty Station

Part-Time Employment

Performance Appraisals

Position Classification

Probationary Period

Professional Credentials

Prohibited Personnel Practices

Promotion and Internal Placement

Public Transit Subsidies

Reinstatement Eligibility

Security Clearances

Separation Before Retirement Eligibility

Telework

Training

Transfers

Use of Office Equipment for Personal Purposes

Violence in the Workplace

Virus Policies

Chapter 4: Alternative Personnel Policies

General Pay Flexibilities

Pay Flexibilities for General Schedule Only

Pay Flexibilities for Wage System Only

Personnel Flexibilities

Demonstration Projects

Alternative Hiring Practices

Chapter 5: Employment Restrictions 

Dual Employment

Ethics Policies

Gift Policies

Political Activities

Chapter 6: Veterans’ Rights 

Veterans’ Preference in Hiring

Special Appointing Authorities

Reductions-in-Force

Restoration After Uniformed Service

Benefits on Performance of Active Duty

Redress and Appeal Rights

Chapter 7: Workplace Injuries and Illnesses 

Medical Benefits

Compensation for Temporary Total Disability

Compensation for Permanent Effects of Injury

Death Benefits

Job Restoration Rights

Status Upon Recovery

RIF Status

Placement in Other Agencies

Disability Retirement Eligibility

Appeal Rights

Chapter 8: Downsizing and Restructuring Policies 

Buyouts

Reductions-in-Force

Early Retirement

Severance Pay in RIFs

Unemployment Compensation

Chapter 9: Appeal Rights and Procedures 

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

Federal Labor Relations Authority

Grievances

Merit Systems Protection Board

Office of Personnel Management

Office of Special Counsel

Alternative Dispute Resolution

Chapter 10: Leave and Other Forms of Time Off 

Annual Leave

Compensatory Time

Court Leave

Credit Hours

Disabled Veteran Leave

Excused Absence

Family and Medical Leave Act

Funeral Leave

Holidays

Leave for Bone Marrow or Organ Donation

Leave Sharing

Leave Without Pay

Leave Years

Meal Periods

Military Leave

Paid Parental Leave

Preventive Health Screening

Qualifying Family Members

Religious Observances

Sick Leave

Time Off Awards

Volunteer Activities

Chapter 11: Travel, Transportation, Per Diem and Relocation Allowances 

Travel and Transportation Expenses

Hours of Work for Travel

Compensatory Time Off for Travel

Frequent Traveler Credits

Travel Charge Cards

Travel Advances

Per Diem Expenses

Relocation Allowances

Travel and Relocation Appeals

Chapter 12: Federal Employees Health Benefits Program 

Premium Conversion

Health Savings Accounts/Health Reimbursement Arrangements

Coverage of Family Members

Special Enrollment Considerations

Changes on Separation

Survivor Coverage

Carrying FEHB into Retirement

Events That Can Terminate Coverage

If Coverage Ends

If a Claim Is Denied

Chapter 13: Federal Employees’ Group Life Insurance Program 

Basic Insurance

Option A-Standard

Option B-Additional

Option C-Family

Accidental Death and Dismemberment Insurance

Changing Life Insurance Coverage

Termination of Life Insurance

Temporary Extension

Canceling or Reducing Insurance

Conversion

Living Benefits

Assignment of Benefits

Beneficiaries

Applying for Benefits

Life Insurance Coverage after Retirement

Reemployed Annuitants

Chapter 14: Federal Long-Term Care Insurance Program 

Eligibility and Enrollment

Underwriting

Benefit Choices

Services Covered

Premium Rates

When Benefits Start and End

Appeal Rights

Chapter 15: Federal Dental and Vision Insurance Program 

Eligibility and Enrollment

Benefits and Premiums

Chapter 16: Retirement 

Main Elements

Eligibility for Retirement—Standard Rules

Eligibility for Retirement—Special Employee Groups

Computing Retirement Benefits—Standard Rules

Computing Retirement Benefits—Law Enforcement Officers and Firefighters

Computing Retirement Benefits—Air Traffic Controllers

Computing Retirement Benefits—Military Reserve Technicians

Computing Disability Retirement Benefits

Credit for Part-Time Service

Credit for Non-Foreign Area Service

Credit for Unused Sick Leave

Phased Retirement

Alternative Form of Annuity (‘Lump-Sum Option’)

Owed Deposits

Redeposit Service

Deemed Deposits and Redeposits

Actuarial Reduction

Interest Rates

Military Service Credit

Cost-of-Living Adjustments (COLAs)

Lump-Sum Payment for Annual Leave

Voluntary Contributions

Annuity Limitation

Survivor Benefits Upon Death of Current Employee—CSRS/CSRS Offset

Survivor Benefits Upon Death of Current Employee—FERS

Annuities for Survivors of Retirees

Children’s Benefits

Lump-Sum Payment on the Death of a Retiree

Reemployed Annuitants

Chapter 17: The Thrift Savings Plan 

Investment Choices

Loan Program

Roth Balances

In-Service Withdrawals

Transfers from Other Retirement Plans

Catch-Up Contributions

Withdrawal Options

Spousal and Survivor Rights

Designation of Beneficiary

TSP Points of Contact

Chapter 18: Social Security 

Qualifying for Benefits

How Your Benefit Is Calculated

Benefit Reductions Under Social Security Law

Disability Benefits

Applying for Benefits

Family Benefits

Survivor Benefits

Chapter 19: Medicare 

Medicare Eligibility

Enrollment

Treatment Options

Special Medicare Rule for Certain Retired Federal Employees

Medicare Part A Benefits

Medicare Part B Benefits

Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit

Medicare Coordinated Care Plans (MCCPs)

How Medicare Affects Your FEHB Coverage

Chapter 20: Taxes 

Federal Tax Treatment of Federal Annuities

State Tax Treatment of Federal Annuities

Tax Treatment of Insurance Premiums

Tax Treatment of Health Savings Accounts/Health Reimbursement Arrangements

Tax Treatment of Flexible Spending Accounts

Tax Treatment of Social Security Payments

Tax Treatment of Distributions from the TSP

Long-Term Care Insurance