The Office of Personnel Management’s retirement application backlog reached a record high in March increasing by 3.4%. The total inventory of unprocessed applications reached a total of 27,368 — the highest recorded level in about six years.
OPM processed 8,756 retirement claims in March which was 2,187 more claims than in January when the backlog reached its previous high of 26,968.
OPM’s Processing Time of Retirement Applications
The monthly average time to process an application dropped from 77 days to 69 days.
The backlog, which has been a challenge for OPM for many years, has historically experienced surges in retirement claims each January and February as many federal employees put in their papers to retire during that season each year. OPM states about 26% of all retirement applications come in the first six weeks of the year.
Below is a the latest chart and table showing the progress for the last year.
- How to Deal With OPM’s Delay in Retirement Application Processing
- How to Submit a Healthy Federal Retirement Application Package
According to OPM, about 14 percent of federal employees are currently eligible to retire. In five years, that figure is expected to jump to 30 percent. OPM’s Retirement Services team gets more than 1.5 million telephone calls plus 280,000 email requests each year.
CSRS / FERS Retirement Application Inventory (OPM)
Disability determinations are included in the pending number after approval. Average Processing Time in Days represents the number of days starting when OPM receives the retirement application through final adjudication.
*Initial retirement cases produced in less than 60 days, on average took 46 days to complete; whereas cases that were produced in more than 60 days, on average, took 115 days to complete.
CSRS / FERS New Retirement Claims Processing Time