Q. How will Voluntary Early Retirement Authority/Voluntary Separation Incentive Pay affect my retirement benefits in regard to the Thrift Savings Plan and what I do with the money in the TSP (when do I have to take withdrawals, etc.)? I am a Defense Department civilian, age 53, with 35+ years of service under CSRS.

A. Early retirement does not affect the rules governing access to your TSP account. The usual rules apply and they can be found at In particular, you should understand the information contained in this notice: You’ll be subject to the early withdrawal penalty unless you qualify for one of the exceptions listed on the left side of Page 7.


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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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