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BenefitsLink > Q&A Columns >

Stop, Look & Listen: Railroad Retirement Benefits Q&A

Answers are provided by Robert S. Kaufman

Leaving the Railroad Before Retirement

(Posted June 18, 2001)

Question 109: Can a rail worker with more than 30 years leave a rail job before 60 and still get a pension at 62?

Answer: Yes. In fact, a rail worker with 30 years can draw a pension at 60 on a reduced basis, or a full benefit at 62.

Leaving the rail industry before retirement doesn't affect the worker's eligibility but it could affect his survivors' eligibility for benefits. If the worker loses his "current connection with the railroad industry," responsibility for paying death benefits rests with Social Security. That means the loss of any Tier 2 payments to survivors and later eligibility dates for widows and widowers.

Important notice:

Answers are provided as general guidance on the subjects covered in the question and are not provided as legal advice to the questioner or to readers. Any legal issues should be reviewed by your legal counsel to apply the law to the particular facts of this and similar situations.

The law in this area changes frequently. Answers are believed to be correct as of the posting dates shown. The completeness or accuracy of a particular answer may be affected by changes in the law (statutes, regulations, rulings, court decisions, etc.) that occur after the date on which a particular Q&A is posted.

Copyright 1997-2017 Robert S. Kaufman
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