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Frequently Asked Questions Insurance

Ineligible for FEHB

    • OPM's Office of Retirement Programs website. The site provides various categories of information including the questions most frequently asked by annuitants and survivor annuitants.
    • During the year, you may request information such as verification of annuity or the value of life insurance as well as make changes to your own retirement account, such as federal and state income tax withholding changes, by calling OPM on the toll-free number 1-888-767-6738, TDD for the hearing impaired 1-800-878-5707, or send email to retire@opm.gov. The automated telephone system is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
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  • During the annual FEHB Open Season, you may enroll, cancel an enrollment, change plans or options, and waive or begin participation in premium conversion. If you waived participation in premium conversion, you can change from self- and-family enrollment to a Self Only enrollment or cancel your enrollment at any time. You can make other changes during Open Season or due to certain events. Your Human Resources Office can give you more information about these events.
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  • President George W. Bush signed The Federal Employee Dental and Vision Benefits Enhancement Act of 2004 into law on December 23, 2004. The Act authorizes OPM to establish arrangements under which supplemental dental and vision benefits are made available to Federal and U.S. Postal Service employees, retirees, and their eligible family members, and the law gives OPM broad contracting authority to leverage the purchasing power of Federal enrollees to provide comprehensive benefits with competitive premiums.
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  • Family members eligible for coverage under your Self and Family enrollment are your spouse (including a valid common law marriage) and children under age 26, including legally adopted children, stepchildren, and recognized natural (born out of wedlock) children.  Foster children are included if they live with you in a regular parent-child relationship. A child age 26 or over who is incapable of self support because of a mental or physical disability that existed before age 26 is also an eligible family member. Your employing office will look at the child’s relationship to you as the enrollee to determine whether the child is a covered family member. You cannot cover other relatives, such as your mother, even if they are otherwise considered your dependents. An employee’s agency makes enrollment eligibility decisions in accordance with the law and regulations.  Ask your Human Resources Office for help in deciding whether your circumstances meet the requirements.
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  • Eligible individuals will be able to enroll during the annual Open Season or after a Qualifying Life Event (QLE) that permits enrollment outside of Open Season. You must enroll through BENEFEDS at www.BENEFEDS.com. Those without access to a computer can enroll by telephone at 1-877-888-FEDS (3337), TTY 1-877-889-5680. Should you have any enrollment questions, please contact BENEFEDS at www.BENEFEDS.com or 1-877-888-FEDS (3337), TTY 1-877-889-5680.
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  • No, you do not have to be enrolled in a family plan for the five years before you retire to meet the five-year requirement. As a retiree, you can enroll in a family plan during the Open Season or when an event occurs that permits a change to the family plan.
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  • When your life insurance terminates, except when you stop it voluntarily by cancellation, the coverage automatically continues for 31 days after the terminating date. You do not pay any premiums during these 31 days.
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  • They can apply to suspend their coverage at any time. Annuitants can call OPM's Retirement Information Office at 1-888-767-6738 to obtain a suspension form. Callers within the local Washington, DC calling area must call 202-606-0500. Former spouses can get the form from the employing office or retirement system maintaining their enrollment. Eligible individuals must submit a completed suspension form and provide all necessary documentation to show eligibility for TRICARE or CHAMPVA during the period beginning 31 days before and ending 31 days after the date they designate as using TRICARE or CHAMPVA instead of FEHB coverage.
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  • No. The FEGLI Program provides group term insurance. It does not have any cash value and you cannot borrow against your coverage. The only opportunities to get money from your coverage while you are still alive are (1) if you are terminally ill and qualify for Living Benefits, or (2) if you are terminally or chronically ill and assign your coverage to a viatical settlement firm.
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  • The reductions start at the beginning of the 2nd month after your 65th birthday or the beginning of the 2nd month after your retirement date, whichever is later. For example: Pierre retired December 31, 1999. He will turn 65 on March 15, 2005. The reductions for his Basic and Optional insurance (if applicable) will start May 1, 2005. Here's another example: Selena was 67 years old when she retired on December 31, 1999. Since she was already past 65 when she retired, the reductions for her Basic and Optional insurance (if applicable) will start February 1, 2000.
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