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Expect Retirement Claims Backlog to Grow Due to Sequester, OPM Says

Agency cuts overtime, call center hours.

Federal retirees face a longer wait for their pension claims to process and for answers to their questions due to budget cuts from sequestration, the Office of Personnel Management has announced. 

The across-the-board cuts have forced OPM to ban all overtime for employees working in retirement services. The office has reduced call center hours to just more than nine hours per day, Monday through Friday.

Ken Zawody, associate director of retirement services, said in a blog post on OPM’s website he hoped the “process improvements developed over the past year will ameliorate some of the adverse effects of these necessary actions,” but the backlog is still likely to grow. 

OPM reduced the retirement claims backlog by 11 percent last month, but there were still more than 36,000 outstanding claims. That marked a 40 percent reduction since January 2012. 

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