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Frequently Asked Questions Retirement

I have divorced. Is my former husband or wife eligible for a survivor benefit?

The survivor benefit you elected at retirement is no longer payable. A monthly survivor benefit would be payable to your former spouse after death if one is provided by court order or your new election.

The following conditions must exist for your former spouse to receive a benefit:

  • You were married to your former spouse for at least nine months;
  • You performed at least 18 months of creditable civilian service;
  • Your former spouse to whom you were married less than 30 years has not remarried before age 55.

Your annuity may be reduced if your former spouse was awarded a survivor annuity by a qualifying court order.

If you retired on or after May 7, 1985, we will honor the terms of a court order that requires you to provide a survivor annuity for an eligible former spouse for a marriage dissolved on or after May 7, 1985. If you are divorced after retirement from a spouse to whom you were married at retirement, we will honor the court order to the extent that your annuity was reduced at retirement. If you did not elect a survivor annuity for that person at retirement, your annuity will not be reduced.

If you retired before May 7, 1985, we will honor the terms of a qualifying court order that requires you to provide a survivor annuity for an eligible former spouse in connection with a marriage that was dissolved on or after May 7, 1985, but only if you were married to that person at retirement and elected to provide a survivor annuity at that time or your were married to that person at retirement and elected to provide a survivor annuity before May 7, 1985.

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