Q: I recently retired (April 2009) under CSRS at age 59 and carried my FEHB family coverage into retirement to cover my spouse (age 56), a nonfederal employee and myself. It appears that we could save money (premium reduction) by obtaining individual policies rather than continuing the family policies since we have no dependents to cover. My spouse has been covered under my family plan for more than 20 years. It also appears that when I turn 65 I will still need to maintain FEHB coverage to provide coverage for my spouse who will not be Medicare eligible for another three years. I also have Tricare coverage. Is my spouse eligible for self-only (individual) coverage? If so, are there other things we should consider other than premium cost?

A: While you might save money of premiums by having individual enrollments, you need to consider the additional cost of each of you having to pay co-insurances and deductibles and meeting catastrophic coverage limits.


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Reg Jones was head of retirement and insurance policy at the Office of Personnel Management. Email your retirement-related questions to fedexperts@federaltimes.com.

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