Employee Benefits: Pension Plan

Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS)

Beginning in 2013, new employees to the federal government will be covered by the Federal Employees Retirement System-Revised Annuity Employees (FERS-RAE). These employees must pay 3.1% of their salary as FERS retirement contributions. This is a contributory three-tier plan providing retirement income from a Federal pension, Social Security and a Thrift Savings Plan (TSP).

NOTE:  If you were employed by the Federal government in the past, you may be covered by the Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS) or the CSRS Offset system instead of FERS.  The disability and survivor benefits shown above are different if you are covered under CSRS.

In addition to a future retirement benefit, FERS provides disability coverage and survivor benefits.    

FERS Disability Coverage

You are eligible for disability retirement after completion of 18 months of creditable civilian service.

FERS Survivor Benefits

Survivor benefits may be payable to a qualified spouse, ex-spouse, and/or child.  Certain survivor benefits are payable after completion of 18 months of creditable civilian service.  Other benefits require completion of 10 years of creditable service.

  • 18 Months Creditable Civilian Service - A surviving spouse is eligible for the Basic Employee Death Benefit. This benefit pays a set amount ($27,461.91 for 2007) plus an amount equal to the higher of one-half of the employee's final salary or high-three average pay. Qualified children are eligible for a monthly annuity.

  • Over 10 Years Creditable Service - A qualified spouse and/or ex-spouse may be eligible for a monthly survivor benefit.  If the employee dies in service, the surviving spouse would be eligible for the Basic Death Benefit described above, plus a monthly annuity.  Qualified children are eligible for a monthly annuity.