OPM clarifies effect of pandemic leave on retirement deductions

The Postal Service wants employees who took leave under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act to know how it will affect their retirement deductions.

The law, also known as the FFCRA, requires some employers to provide employees with emergency paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave for child care.

The leave benefit went into effect April 1 and continues through Dec. 31.

The U.S. Office of Personnel Management recently clarified that FFCRA leave is not eligible for Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) and retirement deductions.

Consequently, any TSP and retirement deductions withheld while employees were on FFCRA leave will be refunded to the employees in the fall, retroactive to April 1.

Retirement refunds — which will show on the employee’s Oct. 2 paycheck — will not affect the creditable service time toward an employee’s retirement eligibility.

Employees who want to keep the TSP and retirement contributions must contact their supervisor to change the FFCRA leave to annual or sick leave. Employees receiving TSP refunds may also, as always, increase their future TSP contributions through PostalEASE.

The change must be in line with leave policies, covered by earned leave balances, and be entered in AdjustPay before Sept. 11 to prevent refunds of TSP and retirement deductions.

The COVID-19 Blue and LiteBlue pages have more information about the FFCRA.

Source: Pandemic leave update | USPS News Link