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Retirement FAQs Post-Retirement

  • Recurring monthly payments may be made to the former spouse of a deceased employee under a court order. A former spouse must also meet the nine month marriage requirement. For additional information about court-ordered benefits, refer to the pamphlet, "Court-Ordered Benefits for Former Spouses [7 MB]." See how the amount of the former spouse survivor benefit is determined.
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  • No.  According to the FEHB law, if you or your former spouse didn’t notify the employing office within the 60-day limit, your opportunity to elect TCC ends 60 days after your divorce or annulment.
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  • Generally, if you cancel your spouse equity enrollment, you may not reenroll.  However, if you cancel because you: • become covered as an employee or a family member under another person’s FEHB enrollment, or • become covered under a Medicare HMO or Medicaid, you may reenroll if you lose the other coverage.  You must provide documentation of the other coverage when you cancel your spouse equity enrollment.
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  • If married at the time of retirement, and you decide not to provide a survivor benefit, your spouse must sign the Spouse’s Consent to your Election in the presence of a notary or other authorized official.  To avoid a delay in processing, the document (SF-2801-2 for CSRS or SF-3107-2 for FERS) must accompany your application for retirement.  The consent requirement can only be waived under certain circumstances such as when the spouse’s whereabouts are unknown. A decision not to provide a survivor benefit becomes final 30 days after the date of your first regular payment.
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  • You must apply within 60 days of: • the date your marriage ended, or • the date the employing office notified you that your qualifying court order (or your former spouse’s election) entitled you to coverage, whichever is later.
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  • Spouse Equity: 1. If you qualify for spouse equity, you can elect FEHB coverage in your own right. 2. Your coverage continues indefinitely, as long as you continue to meet the requirements and pay your premiums. 3. You must pay both the employee and government shares of your plan’s FEHB premium. TCC: 1. Your coverage is limited.  It will end 36 months after your divorce or annulment, or earlier if you do not pay your premiums. 2. You must pay both the employee and government shares of your plan’s FEHB premium, plus an administrative charge equal to 2% of total plan premiums.
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  • Applying for spouse equity coverage is a three-step process: 1. You must notify your former spouse’s employing office in writing that you want to apply for spouse equity coverage; 2. You must ask your former spouse’s retirement system to determine if you qualify based on either your court order or your former spouse’s survivor annuity election when he/she retired. The employing office will tell you how to request this determination; 3. Send this determination to the employing office.  If you qualify for coverage, it will send you a health benefits election form so you can choose a health benefits plan and option.  The employing office will initiate your enrollment when it receives your completed form.
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  • The time limit for notification is 60 days from your divorce or annulment.  Either you or your former spouse must notify the employing office in writing that you want TCC.  If your former spouse is retired, notify the retirement system.
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  • Generally, your taxes change due to a change in the tax tables.  Tax tables are set into law by the United States Congress and administered by the IRS. Each year, the new tables are posted on the IRS website in IRS Publication 15 and Notice 1036.  OPM is required by law to update your Federal income tax withholding based on the new monthly periodic tax tables and formulas. OPM withholds the required federal taxes according to your marital status and exemptions (dependents) elected. You can change your tax withholding amount at any time. It is a good idea to check the amount of your Federal and State tax withholding each year.  
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  • The Go Direct campaign has been involved with many of the most significant financial literacy efforts currently in force across the country, including:
    • The Bank On Program
    • FDIC Alliance for Economic Inclusion
    • FDIC Money Smart Curriculum
    • Money Smart Week
      In addition, during the campaign’s long tenure it has developed relationships with local financial literacy coalition leaders, positioning the Go Direct campaign as a dependable community financial education resource in communities around the country.   (Visit www.GoDirect.org for more information about fees and the surcharge-free network.)  
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  •  The survivor benefit premium is not on the 1099R because it is not taxed by the IRS.
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  • 1. You must have been covered as a family member under the Federal employee or annuitant’s enrollment at some time during the 18 months before your divorce or annulment. 2. You must have a qualifying court order that awards you a portion of his/her annuity or a survivor annuity. 3. You must not have remarried before age 55.  A court order that awards a portion of your former spouse’s retirement annuity will enable you to continue FEHB coverage until your former spouse dies.  A court order that awards a survivor annuity allows you to continue FEHB coverage for life, if you continue to meet the requirements. You may also receive a survivor annuity if your former spouse made an election when he/she retired, or if you divorced after his/her retirement.  If you were married to a CIA or Foreign Service employee, you should contact your former spouse’s employing office for guidance.
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  • You are no longer an eligible family member when your divorce or annulment becomes final.  You get a 31-day extension of your health benefits plan’s coverage after that date.  You may convert to an individual contract offered by your health benefits plan, if you don’t qualify for or don’t want FEHB coverage through spouse equity or TCC.
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  • You can find just about anything you need to know about the FEHB Program on the FEHB web site, located at www.opm.gov/insure/health.
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  • Yes, as long as your marriage ended before his/her 18-month TCC eligibility period expired.  Your TCC coverage ends 36 months after the date of his/her separation from service, not 36 months after the date your marriage ended.
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Total Count: 195, Number of Pages: 13, Page: 9
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