The backlog of retirement claims at the Office of Personnel Management increased by 12% in October to bring the total up over 19,000.
The total outstanding backlog now stands at 19,729 thanks to 9,012 new claims that came in during the month. OPM processed 6,911 applications with an average processing time of 63 days. OPM’s stated goal is to keep the total backlog to 13,000.
The numbers are similar to last October’s when 8,850 claims were received and OPM processed 6,818. The backlog at that time stood at 18,860, 4.6% lower than this year. In October 2016, the backlog was 16,677 and OPM received 7,326 new claims that month.
The typical trend is that the backlog will taper off somewhat in the fall before a huge jump in January and February with the usual wave of first of the year retirements. The start of 2019 is likely to see the usual surge and push the backlog even higher, likely over 20,000 unless OPM can make a serious dent in it in the last two months of the calendar year.
OPM changed the format of the report somewhat in October compared to its past reports. The latest data are included below and only go back to October 2017. The September report had data going back to October 2016. For anyone interested in looking back at some of the past data, we have an extensive listing of articles going back several years on the OPM backlog reports here on FedSmith.com.
|Month||Claims Received||Claims Processed||Inventory (Steady state goal is 13,000)||Monthly Average Processing Time in Days||FYTD Average Processing Time in Days|