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Insurance FAQs

  • If you are a retiree, you can cancel or reduce your FEGLI life insurance at any time. There is no form; you must mail a signed letter to OPM's Retirement Office at: U.S. Office of Personnel Management Retirement Operations Center P.O. Box 45 Boyers, PA 16017-0045 The cancellation or reduction must be in writing and have an original signature by the insured retiree.  Be sure to include your retirement claim number (CSA) or Social Security Number (SSN) and specify what action you want taken.  Please note that you cannot increase your coverage after retirement or reinstate coverage that you cancel.
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  • Yes, it is true. As part of the Basic life insurance, employees who are under age 45 get an Extra Benefit at no additional cost. The Extra Benefit doubles the amount of the life insurance payable if you are age 35 or younger. Beginning on your 36th birthday, the Extra Benefit decreases 10% each year until, at age 45, there is no Extra Benefit.
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  • Annuitants sometimes need a new copy of “Your Federal Retirement Benefits” to show their retirement income to their mortgage lender, bank, underwriter, state income tax office, or low-income housing provider.  To request a new copy of “Your Federal Retirement Benefits”, or to receive a verification of your annuity, contact OPM’s Retirement Office at 1-888-767-6738 or retire@opm.gov.  The phone lines are open from 7:30 am to 7:45 pm (Eastern Standard Time). It is a busy phone number so we encourage you to call early in the morning or after 5:00 pm when the phone lines are less busy.
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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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  • Yes, you may change your FEHB enrollment to any available plan or option at any time beginning 30 days before you become eligible for Medicare. You may use this enrollment change opportunity only once. You may also change your enrollment during the annual Open Season, or because of another event that permits enrollment changes (such as a change in family status).
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  • You need to complete the SF 2809 if you change your enrollment from Self and Family to Self Only or vice versa. For example, if you have Self and Family coverage and you plan to keep Self and Family coverage, you do not need to complete any forms. You must let the health plan know the date of the divorce so that your ex-spouse can be removed from your enrollment. If you have Self and Family coverage and you now plan on enrolling in Self Only coverage, you must notify your Human Resources Office. You will have to complete an SF 2809.
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  • Generally, plans under the FEHB Program help pay for the same kind of expenses as Medicare. FEHB plans also provide coverage for emergency care outside of the United States which Medicare doesn't provide. Some FEHB plans also provide coverage for dental and vision care. Medicare covers some orthopedic and prosthetic devices, durable medical equipment, home health care, limited chiropractic services, and some medical supplies, which some FEHB plans may not cover or only partially cover (check your plan brochure for details).
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  • You may select one or both or neither.
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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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  • Spouse equity is a provision of the law that allows the former spouse of a Federal employee or annuitant to enroll in FEHB if he or she meets certain requirements.
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  • Dental plans provide a comprehensive range of services, including the following:
    • Class A (Basic) services, which include oral examinations, prophylaxis, diagnostic evaluations, sealants and x-rays.
    • Class B (Intermediate) services, which include restorative procedures such as fillings, prefabricated stainless steel crowns, periodontal scaling, tooth extractions, and denture adjustments.
    • Class C (Major) services, which include endodontic services such as root canals, periodontal services such as gingivectomy, major restorative services such as crowns, oral surgery, bridges and prosthodontic services such as complete dentures.
    • Class D (Orthodontic) services with up to a 24-month waiting period.
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  • You must request a waiver of the five-year requirement from OPM. The steps you must take are given in the FEHB Handbook at Waiver of 5-Year Enrollment Requirement - Waiver of 5-Year Enrollment Requirement. If your agency has buyout authority, you may not need to write to the OPM. If you think you might qualify for a waiver of the 5-year coverage requirement, contact your Human Resources Office for information. If you meet the requirements, your agency will attach a memorandum to your retirement application stating that you meet the requirements for waiver by the OPM.
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  • You must apply for Temporary Continuation of Coverage (TCC) with your agency Human Resources Office within 60 days from the date you separate from Federal service. TCC coverage becomes effective the day after the qualifying event. After your 31-day extension of your group coverage ends, you pay the full premium (the enrollee and Government contribution) plus a 2 percent administrative fee. For more information, contact your agency's Human Resources Office and review the TCC pamplet at www.opm.gov/insure/health/eligibility/tcc.
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  • FEHB and FEDVIP are separate programs. While some FEHB plans offer dental or vision benefits as part of their benefit package, only those carriers under contract to OPM are FEDVIP plans. FEDVIP plans offer comprehensive dental and vision benefits. FEDVIP is not part of the FEHB program, and it is different from any supplementary dental and vision product your FEHB plan may offer.
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  • Your spouse is eligible for coverage while you are in the process of getting divorced and even while you are legally separated. Your spouse loses eligibility for coverage as a family member when your divorce is final. Your spouse can apply for coverage in the FEHB Program under the Spouse Equity or Temporary Continuation of Coverage provisions of the FEHB law. Your spouse should contact your HR office to apply.
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  • You can read the FEGLI Program Booklet for Federal Employees or for Postal employees) and review the FEGLI Handbook. Information on current premiums is available here. The FEGLI Calculator can help you figure out your coverage and premiums. Contact your human resources office if you have additional questions.
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  • Your Human Resources Office will compile your health benefits records and forward them to OPM along with your retirement application and other records. OPM will review your health benefits records to determine if you are eligible to continue your FEHB enrollment into retirement. If you are eligible, OPM will process a transfer-in action and forward you a copy of this action for your records.
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  • Premiums are paid on a pre-tax basis (premium conversion) if you are an active employee and your salary is sufficient to make the premium withholding. Pre-tax premiums are not available to annuitants, survivor annuitants or compensationers.
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  • Yes. You can always make changes to your plan during Open Season. In addition, you can make changes if you experience a Qualifying Life Event. For example, if you are currently married and chose a Self Plus One enrollment, in the event you divorce,  you can make a change to Self Only. Alternatively, you can change to Self and Family if you have an eligible child. Other QLEs allow you to make changes as well. You can see a list of all your QLE opportunities on the SF 2809.
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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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Total Count: 980, Number of Pages: 49, Page: 2
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