B-170919, NOV. 19, 1970

B-170919: Nov 19, 1970

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CIVIL PAY - DISABILITY RETIREMENT - PART-TIME WORK EMPLOYEE IS ENTITLED TO KEEP RETIREMENT BENEFITS AFTER RESUMING PART TIME EMPLOYMENT FOR A MONTH IF SHE RETURNS COMPENSATION PAID AFTER RETIREMENT. WHO AFTER DISABILITY RETIREMENT AND A PERIOD OF HOSPITALIZATION RETURNS TO WORK ON A PART-TIME BASIS TO CLEAN UP HER WORK UNDER ASSURANCES THAT SUCH WORK WOULD NOT ADVERSELY AFFECT HER DISABILITY ANNUITY IS ENTITLED TO THE FULL BENEFITS OF THE ANNUITY PROVIDED SHE REFUNDS THE AMOUNT PAID FOR 53 HOURS OF PART-TIME WORK. RENZ: THIS IS IN REFERENCE TO YOUR LETTER OF OCTOBER 21. SCHABENER'S DISABILITY RETIREMENT CLAIM WAS APPROVED BY THE BUREAU OF RETIREMENT. SCHABENER'S LAST DAY OF PAY WAS SEPTEMBER 29.

B-170919, NOV. 19, 1970

CIVIL PAY - DISABILITY RETIREMENT - PART-TIME WORK EMPLOYEE IS ENTITLED TO KEEP RETIREMENT BENEFITS AFTER RESUMING PART TIME EMPLOYMENT FOR A MONTH IF SHE RETURNS COMPENSATION PAID AFTER RETIREMENT. AN EMPLOYEE, WHO AFTER DISABILITY RETIREMENT AND A PERIOD OF HOSPITALIZATION RETURNS TO WORK ON A PART-TIME BASIS TO CLEAN UP HER WORK UNDER ASSURANCES THAT SUCH WORK WOULD NOT ADVERSELY AFFECT HER DISABILITY ANNUITY IS ENTITLED TO THE FULL BENEFITS OF THE ANNUITY PROVIDED SHE REFUNDS THE AMOUNT PAID FOR 53 HOURS OF PART-TIME WORK.

TO MR. WILLIAM C. RENZ:

THIS IS IN REFERENCE TO YOUR LETTER OF OCTOBER 21, 1970, IN REPLY TO OURS OF OCTOBER 15, 1970, CONCERNING THE DISABILITY RETIREMENT OF MRS. MAUDE E. SCHABENER, A FORMER EMPLOYEE OF YOUR ACTIVITY.

IT APPEARS FROM THE FACTS AS REPORTED TO THIS OFFICE THAT WHEN MRS. SCHABENER'S DISABILITY RETIREMENT CLAIM WAS APPROVED BY THE BUREAU OF RETIREMENT, INSURANCE AND OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH, CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION, THAT OFFICE HAD BEFORE IT A PRELIMINARY REPORT FROM THE NAVAL AIR DEVELOPMENT CENTER THAT MRS. SCHABENER'S LAST DAY OF PAY WAS SEPTEMBER 29, 1969. THE BUREAU, IN A LETTER OF SEPTEMBER 18, 1970, TO CONGRESSMAN EDWARD G. BIESTER, JR., STATED THAT ORDINARILY THE ANNUITY OF MRS. SCHABENER WOULD HAVE BEEN EFFECTIVE SEPTEMBER 30, 1969, BUT TO ACCORD HER THE BENEFITS OF AMENDMENTS TO THE RETIREMENT LAW DATED OCTOBER 20, 1969, HER ANNUITY WAS MADE TO COMMENCE ON OCTOBER 21, 1969. THIS ALSO ENTITLED HER TO RECEIVE THE AUTOMATIC COST-OF-LIVING INCREASE OF 5 PERCENT, EFFECTIVE NOVEMBER 1, 1969, FOR ANNUITANTS WHOSE BENEFITS STARTED ON OR BEFORE THAT DATE. SUBSEQUENT THERETO YOUR OFFICE FURNISHED AN AMENDED REPORT TO THE BUREAU ADVISING THAT MRS. SCHABENER'S PAY STOPPED FEBRUARY 27, 1970, WHEN SHE WAS SEPARATED FROM THE SERVICE FOR DISABILITY RETIREMENT. ON THE BASIS OF THAT REPORT THE BUREAU ADJUSTED THE ANNUITY TO COMMENCE FEBRUARY 28, 1970. ASIDE FROM MRS. SCHABENER'S LIABILITY TO REPAY THE ANNUITY RECEIVED FOR THE PERIOD PRIOR TO FEBRUARY 28, 1970, $948.37, SHE FACES THE LOSS OF THE 5 PERCENT COST-OF-LIVING INCREASE BECAUSE OF THE CHANGED DATE OF HER RETIREMENT.

IT APPEARS FROM INFORMATION FURNISHED TO OUR OFFICE THAT THE REASON FOR THE CHANGE IN THE DATE OF RETIREMENT WAS BECAUSE MRS. SCHABENER, SUBSEQUENT TO OCTOBER 1969 AND SOME HOSPITALIZATION, AGREED TO WORK PART- TIME TO CLEAR UP HER WORK AND DID PUT IN 53 HOURS OF WORK DURING THE MONTH OF FEBRUARY 1970. IT ALSO APPEARS THAT BEFORE DOING THIS SHE WAS ASSURED THAT SUCH WORK WOULD NOT ADVERSELY AFFECT HER RETIREMENT BENEFITS.

THE BUREAU OF RETIREMENT, INSURANCE AND OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH OF THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION, THE OFFICE WHICH HAS JURISDICTION OVER RETIREMENT MATTERS, ADVISED CONGRESSMAN BIESTER, BY LETTER DATED SEPTEMBER 18, 1970, THAT IF AS A RESULT OF RECONSIDERATION OF THE MATTER YOUR OFFICE AMENDED THE RECORD TO CHANGE MRS. SCHABENER'S LAST DAY OF PAY, SUBJECT TO REVIEW BY OUR OFFICE, AND THAT IF MRS. SCHABENER WOULD RETURN THE SALARY PAID TO HER AFTER OCTOBER 20, 1969, THE DISABILITY ANNUITY WOULD BE ADJUSTED ACCORDINGLY.

IN YOUR LETTER OF OCTOBER 21, 1970, YOU ADVISED US THAT YOUR OFFICE RECOGNIZES THE SPECIAL PROBLEM SURROUNDING MRS. SCHABENER'S RETIREMENT AND AGREE TO TAKE ANY ACTION YOU CAN IN ORDER TO REMEDY THE SITUATION. IT IS STATED FURTHER THERE IS NO OBJECTION TO AMENDING THE RECORD, AS SUGGESTED BY THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION, TO INDICATE MRS. SCHABENER'S LAST DAY OF EMPLOYMENT AS OCTOBER 20, 1969, UPON OFFICIAL NOTIFICATION FROM OUR OFFICE APPROVING SUCH PROPOSAL.

IT APPEARS FROM THE FOREGOING THAT MRS. SCHABENER'S ACCEPTANCE OF THE PART-TIME EMPLOYMENT WAS WITH THE UNDERSTANDING THAT HER DISABILITY ANNUITY WOULD NOT BE ADVERSELY AFFECTED. THIS EMPLOYMENT, HOWEVER, DID ADVERSELY AFFECT HER BY CAUSING A FORFEITURE OF $948.37 IN DISABILITY ANNUITY, AND A REDUCED DISABILITY ANNUITY FROM THE AMOUNT SHE WOULD HAVE BEEN ENTITLED TO HAD HER LAST DAY OF PAY REMAINED AT OCTOBER 20, 1969. UNDER SUCH CIRCUMSTANCES OUR OFFICE HAS NO OBJECTION TO ADJUSTMENT IN THE MATTER SO AS TO PERMIT HER ANNUITY TO COMMENCE ON OCTOBER 21, 1969. THIS WOULD CONFORM TO THE APPARENT INTENTION OF THE PARTIES WITH RESPECT TO THE REEMPLOYMENT. MRS. SCHABENER SHOULD, HOWEVER, REFUND THE AMOUNT RECEIVED FOR THE 53 HOURS PART-TIME WORK DURING THE PERIOD COVERED BY HER DISABILITY ANNUITY, AS INDICATED BY THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION.