Health coverage for spouse


Q. I am 48 and will be eligible to retire in two years as I will have over 20 years in federal law enforcement. I am signed up for a family plan under FEHB which covers my 42-year old wife and a three-year-old daughter.  My wife just started a Federal job that will also give her access to FEHB. As I understand it, we will continue to be covered under my FEHB for life, and my wife would just decline enrollment when she starts her job. Does this make financial or prudent sense? We don’t believe she will work long enough to be officially retired so her benefits would not last into her retirement, only under mine.
A. Yes, it makes sense for your wife to decline the coverage for the very reasons you cited.


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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

1 Comment

  1. Cornelius Bryant on

    My wife and I are both federal employees; I retired last year and she will be retiring at the end of this year under the CSRS retirement plan. During our tenure with the government I have always carried her on my health insurance and is doing so now. In the event of my demise will she be able to acquire federal health insurance without having a survivor benefit annuity?

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