Does Your Software Include Calculations For Federal Employees And Spouses Impacted By CSRS Offset?

Nov 26 2017 - 12:15pm

Hi Larry and Jerry,
My husband is a high earning federal government employee. His social security and pension benefits are impacted by CSRS offset. My husband is 66 and will retire in about 2 years. Considering the offset, he calculates his social security benefit to be $2,500 monthly at age 68.
I have worked part-time most of my life, but now work full-time and qualify for a social security benefit based on my earnings of about $2,000 monthly at age 70.
I am not sure if we can collect on both work records or how the CSRS offset impacts my social security.
Does your software include calculations for federal employees and spouses impacted by CSRS offset ?
Thank you!
Cathi

Hi,

Our software is programmed to handle the Windfall Elimination (WEP) and Government Pension Offset (GPO) provisions, but the software may not be able to determine based on a person's earnings history whether or not they meet any of the exceptions to WEP & GPO. Nor does it calculate reverse offsets, such as the amount of reduction that would apply to a person's CSRS pension if and when they start receiving Social Security benefits. You and your husband can still use the software, but you will likely need to determine for yourselves whether or not your husband is exempt from WEP & GPO in order to get accurate results.

From the information included in your question, it doesn't sound like your husband's CSRS pension would have any effect on your personal Social Security benefits or filing options. And, it sounds like your husband may be exempt from WEP based on having 30 years of substantial earnings on which he paid Social Security taxes (https://www.ssa.gov/pubs/EN-05-10045.pdf), and would likely be exempt from GPO if he paid Social Security taxes for at least the last 5 years of his work for the federal government (https://www.ssa.gov/pubs/EN-05-10007.pdf). Assuming that's the case and depending upon your current age and earnings levels, you and your husband likely have a number of good filing options available to you. Our software should be able to help you and your husband to explore and compare your filing options in order to determine your best overall strategy.

Best, Jerry