Q & A Session: What are my options for a discontinued service retirement?



I am an Air Force reservist and a full-time federal employee.  I am facing a military medical board which I think will determine I am no longer medically able to participate in the reserves.  I am 47 years old.  I have given 28 years of reserve service and 16 years of civil service.  I am not sure what my options are to pursue a discontinued service retirement since I am under age 50.  What are my options for a discontinued service retirement?  Can I request an age wager?


While you may no longer be medically suitable for military service, that does not mean you are also unfit for federal civil service; many conditions which would make an individual unable to serve in the military do not preclude civil service.  I suspect you may not have to retire at all.

If you wish to seek a discontinued service retirement, you must either (a) be age 50 or over, with 20 years of creditable service, or (b) have at least 25 years of service at any age.  Your lengthy reserve career likely had several period of active duty, might add several years of “creditable federal service.”  I am not aware of a waiver to these requirements.  However, that may be a moot point, because you must also be involuntarily separated from federal service to qualify for a discontinued service retirement, and it does not sound as though you are being involuntarily separated from your civil servant position.

If you are medically unable to continue in your current position, you could apply for a disability retirement, request a transfer to another position you could perform as an accommodation, or request an accommodation which allows you to perform your current duties.

This response is written by Michael S. Causey, associate attorney of Shaw Bransford & Roth P.C., a federal employment law firm.

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1 Comment

  1. I wonder if the writer is in a dual-status civilian position that requires membership in the Air Force Reserve, and that’s why he’s asking about the DSR?

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