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BenefitsLink > Q&A Columns >

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

Answers are provided by Robert S. Kaufman

Reduction In Tier 1 Due to Public Pension

(Posted December 7, 2005)

Question 560: I have 13 years of railroad work and a few years under Social Security. The rest of my career was spent working as a city policeman, for which I will receive a pension from the city. My police work was not covered by Social Security. I know that my Tier 1 will be less than it should otherwise be. Is there some way that I can tell how much it will be reduced?

Answer: You are right that because of your city pension your Railroad Retirement Tier 1 benefit will be computed under a different formula. That formula might produce a Tier 1 benefit that is as much as 70% less than your Railroad Retirement and Social Security earnings otherwise would have been.

The exact reduction will depend upon how many years during which you had "substantial" earnings under either Railroad Retirement or Social Security.

When you get close to retirement, you should ask the nearest Railroad Retirement Board office for an estimate of your monthly benefit. They should be able to tell you the exact reduction at that time.

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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