Postal employees receive the same general benefits provided to federal employees for the most part. However, USPS employees pay considerably less for their health care bi-weekly premiums than the competitive Civil Service does.
Vacation & Sick Leave
All employees receive generous benefits including:
- 10 paid holidays
- 13 vacation days for the first 3 years, twenty days of vacation with three to fifteen years service and after fifteen years twenty-six days.
- Additionally, 13 sick days are accrued each year regardless of length of service. Employees are permitted to carry their sick leave balances year to year. Many retire with over a years sick leave which they can apply towards their retirement time.
- Military time counts toward benefits. If you have three years of military service, you begin with four weeks paid vacation and three years towards retirement. You can buyback your military time so that it counts towards your federal civil service retirement.
Health Benefits & Life Insurance
Medical health plans under the Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) program are diverse and costs are comparatively low considering that the federal government pays two thirds of the premiums for employees and retirees. The medical plan is an employee-employer contribution system and includes HMO and Blue Cross and Blue Shield programs. There are literally hundreds of plans to choose from.
The Federal Employees’ Group Life Insurance (FEGLI) program is available to all employees. The FEGLI program offers low cost term life insurance for the employee and basic coverage for the family. FEGLI offers up to five times the employee’s salary in death benefits.
Other insurance benefits include:
- Federal Employees Long Term Care (FELTC)
- Federal Employees Dental Vision Care (FEDVIP)
- Federal Flexible Spending Account Program (FSAFEDS)
One of the primary benefits of Postal Service employment is the satisfaction you experience from working in a challenging and rewarding position. Positions are available with the level of responsibility and authority that you desire.
The Postal Service’s retirement system is a three tiered system comprised of the following:
- A fixed annuity based on your years of service
- A defined contribution 401K THRIFT Savings Plan with a 5% employer match
- Social Security
The Postal Service retirement system is the same as the federal civil service. Annuitants receive 1% of their high three earning years average salary for each year of service. For example, if you work 25 years and retire you would receive 25% of your salary for life and the annuity is adjusted for inflation each year.
Social Security is also withheld and the employee contribution system is fashioned after a 401k defined contribution plan. You can elect to contribute into their THRIFT savings 401k plan. The government will match your contribution up to 5 percent. This is effectively a 5 percent pay increase. Your contributions are tax deferred and reduce your taxable income by the amount contributed. The retirement benefit is determined by the amount that has accumulated during the employee’s career. This includes the interest earned and capital gains realized from the retirement fund.
There are many withdrawal options including lump sum and various fixed term annuities. The contribution plan payout is in addition to the social security benefits that you will be eligible for at retirement. Postal workers pay considerably less for their health benefits than competitive federal civil service employees due to their negotiated union contracts.
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