Retirement backlog down but OPM taking longer to process claims

Just like the year before, December saw a drop in the number of federal retirement claims received by the Office of Personnel Management compared to the previous month. But it’s taking even longer to process the requests.

Historically, December and January are popular times to retire and last January there was a spike in claims submitted, according to data from OPM. Last month also repeated 2018’s pattern of a drop in the number of retirement claims processed from November, however the claims backlog also dropped month over month.

Meanwhile, the time spent processing claims increased from November, from an average of 62 days to an average 66 days. This is the longest it’s taken to process retirement claims in the last 15 months, according to OPM’s latest data, and the processing time had been creeping upward since September, after three consecutive months of drops over the summer.

The average processing time for the fiscal year to date subsequently went up to 62 days from 61 days, in December compared to November.

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