Do Members of Congress automatically qualify for a pension once elected?

No. Thankfully. No.

Newly elected Republican liar, George Santos, pictured here thinking he is going to qualify for a lifelong pension after being elected to Congress, does not qualify for a pension. Not yet and probably never will since there just aren’t enough stupid people in this country to re-elect him. (Although I did say that about trump and look what happened.)

Prior to 1984 Members of Congress pension was governed by the Civil Service Retirement System. They did not pay into social security but paid into a retirement system that provided a guaranteed percentage of the average of their last 3 years of their salary

After 1985 Member of Congress pensions were governed by the Federal Employees Retirement System. Under this system they paid into social security, into their pension account, and had the option of contributing to a 401k with some matching by the Government. Their pension was considerably less than a pension under the CSRS.

To qualify for a pension a Member of Congress must serve at the very least 5 years and be 62 years of age. Here is a good explanation:

Under both CSRS and FERS, Members of Congress are eligible for a pension at the age of 62 if they have completed at least five years of service. Members are eligible for a pension at age 50 if they have completed 20 years of service, or at any age after completing 25 years of service. 

So if a Congressional member is eligible they could draw a pension, Social Security, and pull from their 401K after the age of 62. This pension depends upon years served. As an example, if Congressional salary is $175,000, under the FERS pension plan, and after 20 years of service at the age of 62 their pension would be $38,500 a year. 175,000 * years served * .011 (if over 62 or .01 if under)

So no. They do not automatically qualify for a pension.

One Response to Do Members of Congress automatically qualify for a pension once elected?

  1. Drew Bell says:

    Do they still get benefits if they quit or are tossed out?

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