Social Security Government Pension Offset

The Government Pension Offset, or GPO, affects spouses, widows, and widowers with pensions from a federal, state, or local government job. It reduces their Social Security benefits in some cases.

If you receive a pension from a government job but did not pay Social Security taxes while you had the job, SSA will reduce your Social Security spouse, widow, or widower benefits by two-thirds of the amount of your government pension. This offset is known as the GPO.

Generally, SSA won’t reduce your Social Security benefits as a spouse, widow, or widower if:

  • Your government pension is not based on your earnings.
  • Your government pension is from a federal, Civil Service Offset, state, or local government job where you paid Social Security taxes; and at least one of the following applies:
    • You filed for and were entitled to spouse, widow, or widower benefits before April 1, 2004.
    • Your last day of employment at the job was before July 1, 2004.
    • You paid Social Security taxes on your earnings during the last 60 months of government service. (Under certain conditions, fewer than 60 months may be required for people whose last day of employment falls after June 30, 2004, and before March 2, 2009.)