6:27 pm, May 22, 2015

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  • 6

    ...and I applaud the recognition that there is a major problem! What I still don't hear is a revamping of the whole process! OPM is the choke point not the 'fix'...each agency needs to process their own personnel...verification of other service, etc...should have been done when the employee was hired NOT years later and through OPM! Paperwork? You gotta be kidding! That form is a nightmare! A simple request and a verification between HR and the requestor...a real no-brainer! As for software, etc...what the heck is wrong with using what the military services use? Retirement from the military back in 1990 (almost 20 years ago, supposedly the old days) was a breeze compared to this! Check to bank in 30 days and no 60-80% stuff! You don't have to solicit 'bids' and all that...borrow it, make it fit, and just git er dun! Obviously, this is a crisis that should warrant Presidential intervention! Want some votes this Fall and beyond, regardless of Party??? Quit letting the 'wonks' try and fix this...it'll just stay messed up!!!
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  • Typical government spin...
    Mr. Berry says it's taking "more than 100 days to process claims"... try more than 200 days, Mr. Berry. After 20 years of government service, I'm at 203 days and counting... with no way to contact OPM or get information because they DO NOT ever answer their phones. It's deplorable. If this is any indication of how our health care will be managed, we're in trouble.
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  • Reality Check
    Was I dreaming? I thought I read a Federal News Radio column about a week or two ago that raised the issue of retirement adjudications taking anywhere from 10 months to a year to be settled. The article cited input from newly retired people who were having financial difficulties as the basis for the length of time to adjudicate. These people were not only without a retirement check, they couldn't access TSP funds, their Social Security Supplement, and hadn't received a timely check for their Annual Leave, all because of the OPM's failure to adjudicate their retirements. The article was encouraging all of us Feds to save until we had a rather large nest egg to live off of (for a year?). The brightest point of the article was a citation by a newly retired Fed who reported that his retirement was adjudicated after only 2 months because he called OPM on the phone and spoke with them every day. Did anyone happen to get that phone number? Maybe retired feds could each call daily until our retirements are adjudicated. Bottom line, 'taking more than 100 days to process claims' is not a valid description of the actual situation. If the problem facing retirees is incorrectly stated in the public media, there will be no urgency to remedy the situation. After all, the thought will go, what can the Feds possibly complain about during this recession? Don't they have it all? Let's get that deficit reduced.
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  • OPM
    As a (hopefully) soon to be retired CSRS'er, I sure hope I don't have to wait months and months for a retirement check. I do have some savings that could "tide me over" for a few months, but why should I even have to access those funds? Once those savings are gone, they cannot be replaced. We are supposed to put in our paperwork three months before the actual retirement date. That gives OPM plenty of time to complete the processing and get the proper retirement amount out to the individual in a timely manner. OPM really needs to do some soul-searching to figure out the problem. My guess is that the employees are so overworked (and possibly even unqualified), they have deliberately slowed down production. If these employees were under a Pay for Performance plan, the majority of them would probably be out of a job. OPM could re-hire their own qualified retired employees to help clear up the horrible and completely unreasonable backlog of retirement applications.
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  • OPM is Broken!!
    I had a good laugh over this morning's coffee about the comment that it is taking more than 100 days to process retirement paperwork. In my case, we are now close to 400 days and I am still being paid on an interim basis. When I retired on September 30, 2009, I had previously submitted all the paperwork correctly. My first interim pension payment was received on November 13, 2009 and all subsequent interim payments have been received on the first of each month. So far, so good. However, because I had an almost four-year break in service, OPM seems unable to get my employment records from my prior agency or from the National Records Center. OPM's retirement servicing folks who man the Retirement Services call center have always being very helpful and courteous. However, they are not the ones doing the paperwork processing. They only know what the claim processor enters into the system. The last time I called them (early October) I was advised that nothing had been entered into the system since March. The claims processor handling my file has been virtually impossible to reach and has not provided any helpful information other than "we're still trying to get your records". After seven months, that explanation no longer flies. I called the claims processor's supervisor on at least four occasions over the last three months but the supervisor has never returned any of my calls. How's that for service? On October 5th, I called the retirement specialists at the National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association (NARFE) for assistance. They expressed shock that I am still being paid an interim payment and agreed to look into the matter. I'm hoping that their involvement will get us to the finish line. This is my tale of woe. I recognize that my break in service may complicate my retirement claim somewhat. But surely this is not an usual situation. Fortunately, I'm in a financial position where the underpayment of my pension payment is merely an inconvenience, not a catastrophe. However, I'm sure that there are many retirees who must be financially distressed by the slow processing of their retirement claims. Enough excuses already!
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