FEHB re-enrollment and the 5-year rule


Q. I am thinking about canceling my health insurance to go under my spouse’s plan. He is not an employee of the government. I have been with the government for 25 years. I know you must carry the insurance for five years in a row to carry it into retirement. I am not in that window. If I cancel it, can I re-enroll later if I decide to get back on (for example, in open season 2015)?

A. As long as you are still a federal employee, you can re-enroll during any health benefits open season. However, the five-consecutive-year rule would still apply. If you retired less than five years after your most recent enrollment, you wouldn’t be able to carry that coverage into retirement.


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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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