Rules on drawing from TSP


Q: I will have 10 years of service in the billing department of a VA medical center in May. I would like to retire when I turn 63 in January 2012. I would like to know if I can just draw from my Thrift Savings Plan money until I turn 65 and start Medicare then, and not before age 65. I need information on how and if I can do this. Can you please help me with that?

A: You may draw from your TSP after you separate through regular monthly payments, which can be adjusted once each year. If you want those payments to end, however, you will have to withdraw the remaining balance from your TSP account at that time. This final payment may be rolled over to an IRA or not, at your option.


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Mike Miles is a Certified Financial Planner licensee and principal adviser for Variplan LLC, an independent fiduciary in Vienna, Virginia. Email your financial questions to and view his blog at

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