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Healthcare & Insurance Dental & Vision

The Federal Employee Dental and Vision Benefits Enhancement Act of 2004 provided OPM the opportunity to establish arrangements under which supplemental dental and vision benefits are made available to Federal employees, retirees, and their dependents.

Dental and vision benefits first became available only to eligible Federal and Postal employees, retirees, and their eligible family members on an enrollee-pay-all basis through the program called the Federal Employees Dental and Vision Insurance Program (FEDVIP). Section 715 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2017 (FY 2017 NDAA), Public Law 114-38, expanded FEDVIP eliginility to certain TRICARE-eligible individuals, beginning in 2019 when TRICARE Retiree Dental Plan ceased. This Program allows dental insurance and vision insurance to be purchased on a group basis which means competitive premiums and no pre-existing condition limitations. Premiums for enrolled Federal and Postal employees are withheld from salary on a pre-tax basis.

Enrollment takes place during the annual Federal Benefits Open Season in November and December. New and newly eligible employees can enroll within the 60 days after they become eligible.

Eligible individuals can enroll in a dental and/or vision plan. They may enroll in a plan for Self Only, Self Plus One, or Self and Family coverage. Eligible family members include one's spouse and unmarried civilian dependent children under age 22 or unmarried TRICARE-eligible dependent children under age 21 (non-student) or 23 (full-time student). This includes legally adopted children and recognized natural children who meet certain dependency requirements. This also includes stepchildren and foster children who live with the enrollee in a regular parent-child relationship. Under certain circumstances, one may also continue coverage for a child 22 years of age or older who is incapable of self-support and for a TRICARE-eligible dependent child over age 21 or 23 who meets the Department of Defense's standard for incapacity and support or for incapacity and dependency.

FEDVIP rules and FEHB rules for family member eligibility are NOT the same.

Changes in dependent eligibility under healthcare reform (Affordable Care Act) do not affect eligibility for children under FEDVIP.

Employees must be eligible for the FEHB Program in order to be eligible to enroll in FEDVIP. It does not matter if they are actually enrolled in FEHB - eligibility is the key. Annuitants do not have to be eligible or enrolled in the FEHB Program.

For enrollment/premium questions regarding dental and vision insurance, please contact BENEFEDS at 1(877)888-3337. To enroll in FEDVIP, please visit www.BENEFEDS.com.

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