Q. My wife is a carrier in the U.S. Postal Service. We’ve been married more than 30 years, and she’s been enrolled in medical for more than five years. I’d like to go on her medical when I retire. I’ve been told that in order to do that and retain medical and if she were to pass away before me, she would need to select survivor benefits on her retirement. We’d actually prefer not to do that, as I wouldn’t need the survivor annuity benefits. Does she have to have survivor benefits for me to use the medical benefit? Does…

Q. I retire in a year with 37 civilian years total. I also will retire from the Reserves. I will be 56 and will start to draw my civ TSP in monthly payments. Does it make sense to combine my civ and mil TSP? Would it make more sense to draw my civ TSP and leave the mil TSP alone, just in case I needed to take a lump sum for an emergency?

Q. It is often emphasized how important asset allocation is to the success of one’s portfolio, saving or retirement plan; and you emphasize in your “Retirement University” presentations the importance of having an asset allocation on the “efficient frontier.” Are calculators or programs available that allow do-it-yourselfers to determine a risk efficient asset allocation for their portfolio? Do you think the asset allocations in the TSP’s L Funds (i.e., L Income to L 2050) are on the efficient frontier for their level of expected return?

Q: Because of the limited ability to withdraw TSP funds in a totally efficient manner for me, I am considering rolling my TSP account to Vanguard in two years when I retire. Vanguard provides the ability to withdraw Roth funds separate from 401k funds in any amounts I desire. As I understand, TSP requires withdraws to be equally prorated between 401k and Roth, based on the total balance. How does a TSP transfer occur … are the TSP Roth funds moved to a Vanguard rollover Roth fund and the TSP 401k funds placed in a taxable rollover account? It seems…

Q. I am considering leaving the federal government next year when I turn 50. At that time, I will have 27 years of service and will be deferring retirement until I am 62. Is it possible to start collecting an annuity with my TSP balance at that time and will there be a 10 percent penalty for early withdrawal?

Q. I made a $50,000 loan to my TSP account. I separated from active-duty service. Now I’m being asked to pay the $40,000 remaining balance in full. If I allow the TSP to close the loan, can I move the funds to an IRA within two months after the loan is closed? If this is allowed, what IRA publication covers this transaction? Or would the best course of action be to pay the loan in full to TSP?

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