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Portability is a provision in Public Law 105-311, the Federal Employees Life Insurance Improvement Act, which was enacted October 30, 1998. It applies only to FEGLI Option B insurance, which provides coverage in multiples of 1 to 5 times an employee's annual salary. Employees that met certain requirements were eligible to continue Option B insurance following separation from Government service.
The portability provision was a three-year demonstration project. It expired April 24, 2002, and is no longer available. Your agency should not give any employees a Portability Notice or other portability information.
For more detailed information refer to Benefits Administration Letter 02-206 of April 26, 2002[119 KB].
To continue life insurance benefits as an OWCP compensationer, you must have carried FEGLI for the 5 years of service immediately before the beginning date of compensation or, if you had it less than 5 years, for the full period(s) of service during which you were eligible to be insured. This coverage is subject to the same conditions as those of a civil service retiree.
Please see your human resources office if you are receiving compensation benefits.
If you separate from service to enter the military you are considered to be in a nonpay status for FEGLI Purposes. As long as you have reemployment rights under USERRA, you can keep your FEGLI coverage for up to 12 months, or until 90 days after your military service ends, whichever date comes first. This coverage is free. At the end of 12 months (or 90 days after the military service ends), the coverage terminates. You also get the 31-day extension of coverage and the right to convert. Public Law 110-181, the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act, enacted January 28, 2008, authorizes the continuation of FEGLI coverage for an additional 12 months for Federal employees called to active duty whose coverage terminated after the law's enactment.
The law allows employees who enter on active duty or active duty for training in one of the uniformed services for more than 30 days to continue their FEGLI for up to 24 months. FEGLI coverage is free for the first 12 months. However, employees must pay both the employee and agency share of the premiums for their Basic coverage, and also pay the entire cost (there is no agency share) for any Optional insurance they may have for the additional 12 months of coverage. See more details in BAL 08-203 [30 KB].
At the end of 12 months, or 90 days after your military service ends, whichever date comes first your former agency must complete an Agency Certification of Insurance Status (SF 2821) and a Notice of Conversion Privilege (SF 2819). If a claim needs to be filed while you are still covered under FEGLI, you or your survivors should contact your former employing agency.
Living Benefits payments received on or after January 1, 1997, are not subject to Federal income tax. However, some states have laws, regulations, or rulings concerning the taxability of Living Benefits (also called accelerated death benefits). You should consult a tax advisor or your State's tax department for specific information concerning State income tax laws.
Qualified payments from viatical settlement firms received on or after January 1, 1997 are also not subject to Federal income tax provided the companies meet certain tax exemption qualifications.
If you are considering assigning your insurance to a viatical settlement firm, you should consult a tax advisor to determine if you and the viatical settlement firm meet the tax exemption qualification standards.
When an employee who has been on military duty returns to active Federal service, he or she gets back whatever type(s) of life insurance he or she had before going into nonpay status (as long as the position is not excluded from coverage). The employee does not get an opportunity to elect more coverage unless he or she has been separated from service for at least 180 days.
Benefits Administration Letter 08-203 [30 KB] - Federal Employees' Group Life Insurance (FEGLI): Additional Continuation pf Life Insurance Coverage for Federal Employees Called Up to Active Duty
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