The Numbers You Need To Know for 2021

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The Numbers You Need To Know for 2021

As we move forward into 2021, there are a few numbers that stand out more than others. And these numbers might affect how you plan for retirement. Be sure to read below thoroughly to see how these numbers apply to your situation in 2021 and beyond.


Let’s start with the number 300 (and no we aren’t talking about the movie!)

During a typical year, federal employees are allowed to carryover a maximum of 240 hours of annual leave. Anything more than 240 hours is forfeited. There’s exceptions to this rule, but we won’t cover all of them here.

For 2021, the new temporary carryover amount has been raised to 300 hours. The reason for the change is the inability of many employees to use their leave time due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

A couple things to note: this excess leave must be used in 2021 as the leave carryover amount for 2022 will revert back to 240 hours. Also, the excess leave cannot be included in the lump sum payment should you retire in 2021.

You can read more about the memo here: Annual Leave Guidance

As the saying goes, use it or lose it in 2021…


In 2021, federal retirees will receive a 1.3% cost of living adjustment to their retirement paychecks. This COLA was announced in October and went live with payments starting January 4th. It’s down slightly from the 1.6% COLA FERS & CSRS employees received in 2020.


The Medicare Part B Premium in 2021 is $148.50, which is a 2.7% increase from the 2020 amount of $144.60. If you’ve received notice of an IRMAA or (income related monthly adjustment amount) you can check out our blog post from November that details ways to appeal the adjustment.


Civilian federal employees will receive a pay raise of 1% for the year 2021. This amount is across the board, and there are no locality pay adjustments this year. 3% is the raise for military members in 2021. The pay raise went live on January 1st, 2021. OPM has published full pay tables here.


If you’re under age 50, the limit for TSP contributions is $19,500, which is unchanged from 2020. Those age 50 and older are still eligible for catch-up contributions of $6,500 annually, for a total of $26,000 in eligible contributions. Full TSP fund returns for 2020 are available on

If you have any questions around any of these topics, please contact your friends at GPIS by calling 866-201-7829 or by sending an e-mail to



We are here to help. Our goal is to provide you with the knowledge and tools to make educated decisions when it comes to your benefits and retirement. Contact us today!

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