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Proposed Rule

Federal Employees' Retirement System; Present Value Conversion Factors for Spouses of Deceased Separated Employees

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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Start Preamble

AGENCY:

Office of Personnel Management.

ACTION:

Proposed rule.

SUMMARY:

The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) is issuing a proposed rule to revise the table of reduction factors for early commencing dates of survivor annuities for spouses of separated employees who die before the date on which they would be eligible for unreduced deferred annuities, and to revise the annuity factor for spouses of deceased employees who die in service when those spouses elect to receive the basic employee death benefit in 36 installments under the Federal Employees' Retirement System (FERS) Act of 1986. These rules are necessary to ensure that the tables conform to the economic and demographic assumptions adopted by the Board of Actuaries and published in the Federal Register on May 21, 2014, as required by 5 U.S.C. 8461(i).

DATES:

We must receive your comments by September 16, 2014.

ADDRESSES:

You may submit comments, identified by docket number and/or RIN number 3206-AM99, by any of the following methods:

  • Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments.
  • Email: combox@opm.gov. Include RIN number 3206-AM99 in the subject line of the message.
  • Mail: Jim Giuseppe, Retirement Policy, Retirement Services, Office of Personnel Management, 1900 E. Street NW., Washington, DC 20415-3200.
Start Further Info

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Roxann Johnson, (202) 606-0299.

End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

On May 21, 2014, OPM published a notice in the Federal Register to revise the normal cost percentages under the Federal Employees' Retirement System (FERS) Act of 1986, Public Law 99-335, 100 Stat. 514, as amended, based on economic assumptions and demographic factors adopted by the Board of Actuaries of the Civil Service Retirement System. 79 Fed. Reg. 29,224 (May 21, 2014). By statute under 5 U.S.C. 8461(i), the demographic factors Start Printed Page 41929and economic assumptions require corresponding changes in factors used to produce actuarially equivalent benefits when required by the FERS Act.

Section 843.309 of title 5, Code of Federal Regulations, regulates the payment of the basic employee death benefit. Under 5 U.S.C. 8442(b), the basic employee death benefit may be paid as a lump sum or as an equivalent benefit in 36 installments. These rules amend 5 CFR 843.309(b)(2) to conform the factor used to convert the lump sum to 36-installment payments with the revised economic assumptions.

Section 843.311 of title 5, Code of Federal Regulations, regulates the benefits for the survivors of separated employees under 5 U.S.C. 8442(c). This section provides a choice of benefits for eligible current and former spouses. If the current or former spouse is the person entitled to the unexpended balance under the order of precedence under 5 U.S.C. 8424, he or she may elect to receive the unexpended balance instead of an annuity.

Alternatively, an eligible current or former spouse may elect to receive an annuity commencing on the day after the employee's death or on the deceased separated employee's 62nd birthday. If the annuity commences on the deceased separated employee's 62nd birthday, the annuity will equal 50 percent of the annuity that the separated employee would have received had he or she attained age 62. If the current or former spouse elects the earlier commencing date, the annuity is reduced using the factors in Appendix A to subpart C of part 843 to make the annuity actuarially equivalent to the present value of the annuity that the spouse or former spouse would have received if the annuity had commenced on the retiree's 62nd birthday. These rules amend that appendix to conform to the revised economic assumptions.

Executive Order 12866, Regulatory Review

This rule has been reviewed by the Office of Management and Budget in accordance with Executive Order (E.O.) 12866, as amended by E.O. 13258 and E.O. 13422.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

I certify that this regulation will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities because the regulation will only affect retirement payments to surviving current and former spouses of former employees and Members who separated from Federal service with title to a deferred annuity.

Start List of Subjects

List of Subjects in 5 CFR Part 843

  • Air traffic controllers
  • Disability benefits
  • Firefighters
  • Government employees
  • Law enforcement officers
  • Pensions
  • Retirement
End List of Subjects Start Signature

U.S. Office of Personnel Management.

Katherine Archuleta,

Director.

End Signature

For the reasons stated in the preamble, the Office of Personnel Management proposes to amend 5 CFR part 843 as follows:

Start Part

PART 843—FEDERAL EMPLOYEES RETIREMENT SYSTEM—DEATH BENEFITS AND EMPLOYEE REFUNDS

End Part Start Amendment Part

1. The authority citation for part 843 continues to read as follows:

End Amendment Part Start Authority

Authority: 5 U.S.C. 8461; §§ 843.205, 843.208, and 843.209 also issued under 5 U.S.C. 8424; § 843.309 also issued under 5 U.S.C. 8442; § 843.406 also issued under 5 U.S.C. 8441.

End Authority

Subpart C—Current and Former Spouse Benefits

Start Amendment Part

2. In § 843.309, revise paragraph (b)(2) to read as follows:

End Amendment Part
Basic employee death benefit.
* * * * *

(b) * * *

(2) For deaths occurring on or after October 1, 2014, 36 equal monthly installments of 2.99522 percent of the amount of the basic employee death benefit.

* * * * *
Start Amendment Part

3. Revise Appendix A to subpart C of part 843 to read as follows:

End Amendment Part

Appendix A to Subpart C of Part 843—Present Value Conversion Factors for Earlier Comencing Date of Annuities of Current and Former Spouses of Deceased Separated Employees

With at least 10 but less than 20 years of creditable service—

Age of separated employee at birthday before deathMultiplier
26.0638
27.0700
28.0764
29.0831
30.0902
31.0978
32.1058
33.1142
34.1233
35.1331
36.1435
37.1547
38.1667
39.1794
40.1931
41.2079
42.2236
43.2406
44.2588
45.2784
46.2993
47.3218
48.3463
49.3725
50.4008
51.4313
52.4644
53.5001
54.5387
55.5806
56.6262
57.6756
58.7295
59.7882
60.8525
61.9228

With at least 20, but less than 30 years of creditable service—

Age of separated employee at birthday before deathMultiplier
36.1693
37.1825
38.1966
39.2116
40.2276
41.2449
42.2634
43.2833
44.3047
45.3276
46.3523
47.3787
48.4073
49.4380
50.4712
51.5070
52.5457
53.5875
54.6327
55.6818
56.7351
57.7930
58.8560
59.9248

With at least 30 years of creditable service—

Age of separated employee at birthday before deathMultiplier by separated employee's year of birth
After 1966From 1950 through 1966
46.4457.4811
47.4790.5170
48.5151.5559
49.5538.5976
50.5955.6426
51.6405.6911
52.6892.7435
53.7417.8001
54.7986.8614
55.8603.9279
56.92721.0000
Start Printed Page 41930 End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. 2014-16949 Filed 7-17-14; 8:45 am]

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