My 1099R arrived from OPM this week and annuitants should have also received their Notice of Annuity Adjustments, Form R1 20-53 (REV. 12/12), that outlines your new 2013 status and payments. The annuity adjustment statement includes the 1.7% COLA increase  and lists any changes to your insurance and elective payments.
Each year we receive many queries from federal and postal retirees that have not received their 1099R. If you need a replacement copy read the article titled 1099R Replacements  that I wrote last year on this subject. It will walk you through the process. For federal employees reading this column the 1099R replaces the W2 that you receive for your wages when still employed by an agency. Retirees must report their retirement income to the IRS and the 1099R shows how much federal tax you paid and how much of your annuity is reportable for federal tax.
Government continues to go paperless. Social security  payments must now be deposited into a bank account or the annuitant can elect to receive a debit card, you can’t buy paper savings bonds and soon OPM will be asking all annuitants and survivor beneficiaries to sign up for electronic 1099R and tax withholding statements. All annuitants will be asked to visit their website at www.servicesonline.opm.gov  and opt-in to receive electronic distribution of the 2013 1099R form. I can’t imagine that OPM will make this mandatory considering that many retirees don’t have computers to access this account.
In the meantime, if you haven’t accessed Services Online lately, you can prepare for the upcoming online elections and check on your annuity status plus much more. I use this site and it is helpful. You can change allotments, print out missing annuity statements, download replacement 1099R forms, change your mailing address, and elect state income tax withholdings and much more.
OPM advises users not to worry if you don’t remember your password. You can request a new one from the main page of Services Online. If you have set up your security questions and have an email address on file, you may choose to receive your password by email. However, if you don’t have an email address on file or haven’t set up your security questions your password will be sent by mail. Unfortunately, Services Online is currently unavailable for use by persons OPM has approved as “Representative Payees” for annuitants and survivors.
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The information provided may not cover all aspect of unique or special circumstances, federal regulations, and financial information is subject to change. To ensure the accuracy of this information, contact your benefits coordinator and ask them to review your official personnel file and circumstances concerning this issue. Retirees can contact the OPM retirement center. Our article is not intended nor should it be considered investment advice. Our articles and replies are time sensitive. Over time, various dynamic economic factors relied upon as a basis for this article may change.
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