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Federal Retirement Planning Resources

WAEPA’s resources are tailored exclusively towards Civilian Federal Employees planning their retirement. Our mission is to support the success, health, and well-being of all Feds, current and former, so you don’t need to be a WAEPA member to access them.

Federal Employee Retirement Planning FAQs

How Long Will I Need to Work?

Eligibility for immediate retirement depends upon age and total years of service. Only under rare circumstances can individuals pursue early retirement and still receive full annuity benefits. You can request retirement estimates for your first available eligibility through your agency.

How Do I Find Out About Unpaid Deposits?

Service credit deposits are required in situations when you have a period of service not covered by the Civil Service Retirement System or Federal Employees Retirement. This includes active military service. Agency retirement specialists can estimate deposit amounts for you.

How Much Will I Need to Save?

It can be challenging to estimate expenses and assets following retirement. Recognizing this, the Office of Personnel Management recommends the Federal Ballpark Estimate as one way of clarifying how much you will need to save over time to finance the retirement you want. You can also use the FERS Retirement Calculator to calculate your basic annuity based on your length of service and “high-3” average salary.

What is the Best Date to Retire?

Federal employees often wait for the ideal time to retire, whether it takes place at the end of the pay period, the quarter, or the year. For background information on choosing the best retirement dates, see this article from Government Executive.

For more information about annuities and savings topics, see our FedCheck for Pre-Retirement Employees.

Financial Planning Throughout Your Career

New Federal Hires

Be diligent with your planning by making sure to:

  • Check everything in your Electronic Official Personnel Folder (eOPF) for accuracy
  • Update beneficiary forms, including SF 1152, SF 2823, TSP 3, and CSRS, or FERS
  • Update your TSP 1 Election form to ensure agency matching on your TSP savings
  • Learn about Health Savings Accounts (HSA) and the FSAFEDS program

View our FedCheck for New Federal Employees


Mid-Career Professionals

Mid-career marks another shift in your financial planning strategy:
  • Review your eOPF to find out your retirement SCD
  • Correct any errors in your documentation
  • Determine whether you might owe any further deposits upon retirement
  • Make sure your beneficiary information is correct and up-to-date
Learn more by using our FedCheck for Mid-Career Employees.

Estate Planning

You can start on estate planning any time in your career. Important documents to double-check include your will, power of attorney, healthcare directive, and temporary guardianship document for any minor children.