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Advice

FAQs about the Government Pension Offset (GPO)

If you have questions about the Government Pension Offset (GPO), we have answers. Questions specific to your own situation should be directed to your local Social Security Administration office.
Published: 06/16/2020

These Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) provide general guidance about the Government Pension Offset (GPO). They do not cover the Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP). Separate FAQs for WEP are available here. If you have questions specific to your own situation, contact your local Social Security Administration Office. 

The FAQs assume you are or were a state or local government employee who works or worked in employment not covered by Social Security. They do not address GPO issues particular to federal employees. If you are divorced, certain special rules apply that your local Social Security Administration office can explain to you.

Key terms in these FAQs

Government pension: A retirement benefit from non-Social Security-covered employment for a state or local government.

Non-SS-covered employment: Work you perform for a state or local government that is not covered by Social Security.

SSA: The Social Security Administration.

SS-covered employment: Work you perform that is covered by Social Security.

SLG: State or local government.

How do I know whether the GPO affects me?

  • You work or worked for a SLG in non-SS-covered employment.
  • You are entitled to a government pension from that employment. SSA deems you to be "entitled to a pension" when you file an application for the pension and a benefit is payable.
  • You are entitled to a Social Security survivor/dependent benefit.

For more information visit our EdVotes page on retirement security.

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