What happens to me and my family if I suffer from a serious medical condition or illness that may or may not be work related?
As part of your employment with the federal government, you have been paying into a disability and retirement annuity system. If you have a serious injury or illness, you may be entitled to a disability retirement annuity as follows:
- If your medical condition or illness permanently disables you from the essential duties of your regular position or prevents you from being in regular attendance, you will be entitled to federal disability retirement benefits.
- In the first year of disability retirement, you will be entitled to 60% of your high three average annual wage.
- In the second year and thereafter, you will be entitled to 40% of your high three average annual wage.
- You can earn up to 80% of the then current pay of your former position without losing your annuity benefit.
- Your health and life insurance benefits will continue at the same cost as if still employed and the cost will be deducted from your disability retirement annuity.
- You can elect a survivor’s annuity for your spouse.
- You may continue to earn service credits towards your regular federal retirement annuity.
- You may qualify for a hardship exemption that will allow you to access your Thrift Savings Plan without penalty but subject to income taxation.