(a) For the purpose of this subchapter–

Terms Used In 5 USC 8521

  • individual: shall include every infant member of the species homo sapiens who is born alive at any stage of development. See 1 USC 8
  • officer: includes any person authorized by law to perform the duties of the office. See 1 USC 1

(1) “Federal service” means active service (not including active duty in a reserve status unless for a continuous period of 180 days or more) in the armed forces or the Commissioned Corps of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration if with respect to that service–

(A) the individual was discharged or released under honorable conditions (and, if an officer, did not resign for the good of the service); and

(B)(i) the individual was discharged or released after completing his first full term of active service which the individual initially agreed to serve, or

(ii) the individual was discharged or released before completing such term of active service–

(I) for the convenience of the Government under an early release program,

(II) because of medical disqualification, pregnancy, parenthood, or any service-incurred injury or disability,

(III) because of hardship (including pursuant to a sole survivorship discharge, as that term is defined in section 1174(i) of title 10), or

(IV) because of personality disorders or inaptitude but only if the service was continuous for 365 days or more;


(2) “Federal wages” means all pay and allowances, in cash and in kind, for Federal service, computed on the basis of the pay and allowances for the pay grade of the individual at the time of his latest discharge or release from Federal service as specified in the schedule applicable at the time he files his first claim for compensation for the benefit year. The Secretary of Labor shall issue, from time to time, after consultation with the Secretary of Defense, schedules specifying the pay and allowances for each pay grade of servicemen covered by this subchapter, which reflect representative amounts for appropriate elements of the pay and allowances whether in cash or in kind; and

(3) “State” means the several States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands.


(b) The provisions of subchapter I of this chapter, subject to the modifications made by this subchapter, apply to individuals who have had Federal service as defined by subsection (a) of this section.