My wife and I moved a few months ago and I finally realized I forgot to change our address for our Thrift Savings Plan accounts. It’s important to use the most up to date address you have so the TSP can contact you with updates or any issues that arise. This is especially important if you are already receiving your Thrift Savings Plan benefits (you need access to IRS Form 1099-R when you file your taxes). Thankfully, updating your address is as simple as updating your account online or filling out a form and mailing it in (the form is available online or by calling the the ThriftLine).
Changing Your Thrift Savings Plan Account Address
The TSP doesn’t send out much mail – but the mail it does send is usually very important for your retirement planning needs, or filing your taxes. In most cases, the mail you receive will be limited to quarterly or annual statements if you opt to receive them in physical form (you can also receive them electronically), and your IRS Form 1099-R if you are making qualified withdrawals from your funds. Other than those situations, TSP mailings are usually limited to important plan updates.
As you can see – it’s a great idea to give the TSP the most up to date information you can. Not only will it help you have the most recent information about your account and what’s going on with the TSP, but it will also keep your private information out of the hands of others. Identity theft is a real danger, so it’s best not to give people a reason or means to target you!
Changing your address: There are two categories of TSP members: actively employed, or separated from government service. Actively employed covers anyone who is still eligible to contribute to his or her Thrift Savings Plan, and separated from Federal service covers everyone (military and civilian) who is no longer eligible to contribute to their TSP.
Are you still employed by the Federal government? Then you will need to contact your agency or service to update your address. You won’t be able to change your information via the TSP website or via the Thrift Line if you are actively employed because your service is responsible for maintaining your information and relaying it to the TSP.
Separated from Federal service? Then you are responsible for notifying the TSP about any changes to your account or personal information. To do this, you can complete Form TSP-9, Change in Address for a Separated Participant. You can get a copy of the form from the link provided, or by calling the ThriftLine. It is a one page form and should only take about 5 minutes to complete. The other way to change your address is via the Thrift Savings Plan website. Log into your account, visit the My Account: Profile Settings section and change your address.
Mail or fax your Form TSP-9: Once you complete your form send it to the following address or fax number:
Thrift Savings Plan
P.O. Box 385021
Birmingham, AL 35238
What if you have two accounts? Great question! My wife separated from active duty and then worked a civil service job, so she has two TSP accounts; one military, and one from Federal service. The instructions are basically the same. If you are still active in the uniformed services or Federal service, you can still only change your address through your agency or service. Then just check the appropriate box on your Form TSP-9 for the agency or service in which you are no longer active. If you are no longer active in either the uniformed services or Federal service, then you can use one form to change your address on both accounts – just check both boxes when you send in your form, or update it online.
Don’t forget about your ability to transfer your TSP. If you have since left Federal or military service, you may wish to consolidate your financial accounts to make it easier to plan for retirement or otherwise manage your money. If this is something you wish to consider, the be sure to review your options for rolling over a TSP account. Some options include rolling it into a 401k or other employer sponsored retirement plan, opening an IRA, or rolling it into a current IRA.