Changing insurance coverage


Q. I am FERS and eligible to keep my medical insurance after retirement. Do I need to enroll my husband before retirement in order for him to qualify, or can I enroll him at an open season after retirement if insurance is needed? By the same token, if he is enrolled before I retire, can I take him off my plan at open season after retirement if he no longer needs insurance?

A. You can change your Self Only enrollment to Self Plus One — or from Self Plus One to Self Only — during any FEHB Open Season before or after you retire.


About Author

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


  1. The reply only covered someone living who is to no longer be covered. 5 CFR 890.1108(d)(1) says also, “An enrollee may decrease enrollment type at any time”, i.e., outside of open season when there is no longer a covered person to which coverage could continue to be extended.

    • Yes. Under Exception 2B in OPM’s Table of Permissible Changes, you can be added to his FEHB enrollment from 31 days before through 60 days after you get married. To make the change, call OPM at 1-888-767-6738.

Leave A Reply