Disability retirement is available to CBP employees who do not meet the minimum age and service requirements for retirement and have a medical condition that prevents them from performing the duties of their position. Medical condition must be expected to last at least one year.
You are eligible to apply for disability retirement if:
- You have completed at least 18 months of federal civilian service creditable under the Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS).
- You have become disabled, because of disease or injury, while employed in a position subject to the retirement system, and are no longer able to render useful and efficient service in your current position.
- CBP is unable to accommodate your disabling medical condition in your current position and has considered you for any vacant position at the same grade level within the same commuting area for which you are qualified.
- You, or your guardian or other interested person, have submitted an application to OPM or CBP within one year of the date of your separation from service. OPM will not waive the time limit for filing an application unless you were mentally incompetent on the date of separation or within one year of this date.
- You have submitted an application for Social Security disability benefits. If the application for Social Security disability benefits is withdrawn for any reason, OPM will dismiss the FERS disability retirement application upon notification by the Social Security Administration.
Under these circumstances, Disability Retirement is a possibility, pending, approval from the Office of Personnel Management (OPM). For more detailed information on Disability Retirement, visit the OPM website.
Applying for Disability Retirement
You must complete the following forms:
- SF 3112, Documentation in Support of Disability Retirement Application which includes:
- SF 3107, Application for Immediate Retirement
- SF 2818, Continuation of Life Insurance Coverage*
- W-4P, Form W-4P 2023 Withholding Certificate for Periodic Pension or Annuity Payments
*Note: The SF 2818 is not required if you have previously waived your Federal Employees' Group Life Insurance coverage prior to applying for retirement.
Other documentation you will need to submit with your disability retirement package includes the following:
- Letter showing you have applied for Social Security benefits (approval not required)
- Current position description
- Marriage certificate (as applicable)
- Divorce decree (as applicable)
- DD-214 (as applicable)
- Buy-back and Paid in Full Receipt (as applicable)
When you are ready to submit your disability retirement paperwork, please apply here. Your anticipated retirement date will be the date on which you submit your documents.
Disability Annuity Computation
Disability annuities are computed based upon the individuals age and voluntary retirement eligibility.
If an employee is under age 62 at retirement and not eligible for immediate voluntary retirement, during the first 12 months of their disability retirement their pension would be calculated at 60% of their 3 highest-average salary minus 100% of their Social Security benefit for any month in which they’re entitled to receive those benefits.
After the first 12 months of their disability retirement, their benefits are calculated at 40% of their high-3 average salary minus 60% of their Social Security benefit for any month in which they are entitled to receive Social Security disability benefits.
Additionally, if one retires under disability retirement prior to the age of 62, their pension will be recomputed at the age of 62 based up on the number of years they would have worked by that point.
If an employee reaches the age of 62 or over and at least five years of service, they would be considered eligible for voluntary retirement and their pension is calculated just as a normal voluntary retirement. There is no monetary benefit after the age of 62 to retire under disability provisions instead of voluntary provisions. That said, their retirement would be computed according to the following factors:
- If you’re 62 or older with less than 20 years of service, you receive 1% of your high-3 average salary for each year of service.
- If you’re 62 or older with 20 or more years of service, you receive 1.1% of your high-3 average salary for each year of service.