Dated policy? Plus, survivor benefits
- By Milt x_Zall
- Dec 26, 2002
A Reader Writes:
I'm an experienced civilian network engineer being pushed out of a job
in the hard-to-hire information technology sector not because of experience
but because of a dated 1966 Defense Department policy that limits DOD civilian
employees to working no longer than five years overseas.
Most civilians working under the rule think it is dumb and I've seen
its effect: our losing experienced people. We've invested large amounts
of training and time in them only to force them out.
What is your opinion on the value of this policy?
It probably has to do with the desire to give others who so desire an
opportunity to work overseas. The State Department has similar policies.
It's also intended to rotate people into a variety of assignments during
their career and broaden their experience base.
A Reader Writes:
How does the widow of a retired employee go about letting the Postal
Service know that the retiree has passed on? Also, what are the steps to
follow for applying for his insurance, etc.?
If a retiree dies who, at retirement, elected to provide a survivor
annuity for his/her surviving spouse and/or former spouse, a monthly survivor
benefit may be payable.
Applicants for death benefits should complete Standard Form (SF) 2800,
Application for Death Benefits.
Specific instructions for completing and mailing SF 2800 are on the form
itself. The Office of Personnel Management will stop the payments to the
deceased and assign a CSF number to you as quickly as possible after receiving
the report of the death. The CSF number a seven-digit number preceded
by "CSF" assigned to the survivor(s) of an annuitant is important because
you will need to use that number whenever you contact OPM about your annuity.
If you are eligible for monthly payments, OPM will send you a survivor
annuity statement that shows your monthly annuity rate and any amounts it
has withheld. Generally, the withholding is for health benefits premiums
and income tax.
As for the Postal Service, inquire at your local post office.
Zall is a retired federal employee who since 1987 has written the Bureaucratus column
for Federal Computer Week. He can be reached at [email protected]