Q. I will soon qualify for Medicare. My husband and I are looking at enrolling in FEHB Kaiser Basic Medicare plan. We currently have FEHB Kaiser. However, as I am a Sacramento County retiree, we can also enroll in the county Kaiser Medicare silver plan, which is a better deal. If we disenroll or suspend FEHB coverage, can we go back during open enrollment? Counties are sometimes susceptible to bankruptcies.

A. You can suspend your FEHB coverage. If your other plan went out of business, you could immediately re-enroll in the FEHB program. If it didn’t but you want to return to the FEHB program, you could do that during any open season.


About Author

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


  1. Hi Reg I retired from the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals after 16 years of service at age 61 and a half. I have not applied for SS yet but plan to at 65.. People are telling me that I must apply for plan A or B a few months before I turn 65 because My SS will be heavily taxed. I am TOTALLY CONFUSED 😐 How does this work?🤔🧐

    • You’ll find a full rundown on your options and when to apply at https://www.usa.gov/medicare. While Social Security benefits are taxable, the amount of that tax is a function of your total taxable income. FYI, you are entitled to Medicare Part A because you already paid for that benefit through payroll deductions. Part B is optional; however, if you want to enroll in that, there is a window of time to do it. If you decide not to enroll and later change your mind, the premiums for that benefit will be higher.

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