By: Vanessa Craddock, Federal Benefits Specialist
Published: December 2019
What is the OPF?
The OPF is the official record which documents your employment history in the Federal government.
Why do employees need a personal copy of their OPF?
The OPF houses the documentation used by HR to make personnel-related decisions affecting your employment. Whenever information is transferred, forms can be lost or misplaced. HR Specialists change over time and your information goes through different hands and locations. Information necessary to process a sudden change in your employment status may be incorrect or missing. When you maintain your own personal copies of your records, these may be used.
What types of employment changes may happen?
Deployments, death-in-service, breaks in service, rehiring, change of agencies, disability, voluntary early retirement, RIFs, and separating for regular retirement, to name a few.
How do I access my OPF?
You must contact your servicing HR office for information on how to access the OPF. Since many agencies have moved to the electronic version of the OPF (eOPF), the HR office will give you a link with directions to access your records. However, some agencies have only the paper version. In this case, you make an appointment to view the OPF.
What should I do with my personal OPF?
Periodically check it against your official OPF. When new documents are added to the OPF, make copies for your personal recordkeeping. This is to ensure that your personnel records are complete, accurate, and show continuous service. Notify HR right away when finding incorrect or missing information.
What do I check for in my OPF?
It is always to your advantage to confirm and maintain the following:
- Records showing your correct Date of Birth
- Retirement Service Computation Date (RSCD does not leave SCD)
- The validity of employment that counts for Federal service
- SF 50s showing beginning and ending dates of all periods of Federal service
- Designation of Beneficiary Forms (SF 2803/3102, SF 1152, SF 2823, TSP-3)
- Enrollment forms for Federal Health and Federal Life Insurance
- Documents showing military service/military service deposits, if paid
The OPF is your passport for seamless personnel processing. Shouldn’t you have a back-up, just in case?
After more than 25 years of experience in Federal Benefits Administration, Ms. Craddock retired and now continues her work as an NITP instructor, providing Federal benefits training nationwide, for live events and via webinars.