The Retirement Experience

Aug 1, 2023 | Retirement, Retirement Planning

As you prepare to embark on a new chapter in your life, the retirement process can be exciting and overwhelming. To help you make a seamless transition, we’ve compiled essential information to help you navigate the retirement experience. From annual leave payments to contacting OPM after retirement, let’s delve into each topic to ensure you have a clear understanding of what lies ahead.

Annual Leave Payment

As you approach your retirement date, you might be wondering about the fate of your accumulated annual leave. The good news is that you will receive a lump-sum payment for your unused annual leave. This payout will be sent after your final paycheck. Typically, you can expect that amount to post in about 30-45 days.

NFC Notification of Separation

A letter notifying you of your Separation from Federal Service will be sent to you within 45 days of your retirement. This letter acts as a tracking number for your retirement that was submitted to OPM. You will have a Civil Service Annuitant (CSA) Number that OPM uses to identify retirement accounts and accrued benefits. You will use this claim number when signing into your account on OPM Retirement Services Online. You should plan on keeping this notification letter so that you do not lose this number. Upon receipt of this letter, you can then contact TSP for withdrawal options which can be made 30 days after your retirement date. 

Interim Annuity

After receiving your NFC Notification of Separation, you can expect an Interim Annuity. This interim payment is usually around 60–80% of your estimated full annuity and provides some financial support while the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) processes your retirement application. Remember that the actual computation of your final annuity may take some time—60 days or longer—so having this interim payment can be beneficial during the waiting period.

FEHB (Federal Employees Health Benefits)

Federal retirees may be eligible to continue their health insurance coverage through the Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) program. It will be transferred to OPM after retirement. To maintain your FEHB coverage into retirement, you must have been enrolled in the program for at least five years immediately preceding your retirement date. Be sure to review your FEHB options carefully and make the necessary arrangements during the open enrollment period to avoid any gaps in your health coverage.

Final Annuity

Once OPM processes your retirement application, you will receive your Final Annuity, which will reflect the accurate calculation of your retirement benefits. You will also receive any annuity amounts that were not paid during the interim pay cycle minus any appropriate deductions.

Contacting OPM After Retirement

After you receive your Civil Service Annuitant number, it is crucial to have open communication with the Office of Personnel Management (OPM). If you have any questions or concerns regarding your retirement benefits or annuity payments, OPM is your go-to resource. You can reach OPM through their official website or contact their Retirement Information Office directly for assistance at 1-888-767-6738. Be aware that there may be long wait times, so the best time to call is early morning Monday through Friday.

Looking for assistance in navigating the retirement experience? We can help!

If you are looking for a guide through the retirement process and to put together a financial plan, Benchmark Financial Group can help. It all starts with gathering your information, discussing your goals, and preparing a plan so that we can help you maximize your income in retirement. With the right strategy, you can get your income equal to or exceed your pre-retirement net income. To get started, schedule an appointment today with Benchmark Financial Group by filling out the form online or calling David Raetz at 913-534-8256 to discuss your financial needs. Benchmark Financial Group is happy to help you navigate your options and determine the best path to move toward your financial goals.

*Securities and Advisory Services Offered Through CreativeOne Securities, LLC  Member FINRA/SIPC and an Investment Advisor.  Benchmark Financial Group, LLC and CreativeOne Securities, LLC are not affiliated.

9300 W. 110th Street, Ste 160
Overland Park, KS 66210

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