Retiring early/FEHB


Q. I am 36 years old and plan on retiring at age 40 from the VA, giving me 10 years of service, during which time I have been continuously enrolled in FEHB. I know I will not be eligible for my annuity until around age 60, which means I will not be eligible for FEHB from age 40-60. However, once I reach age 60 or so, and start collecting my annuity, will I be eligible to enroll in the FEHB again? I know you have to enrolled for the five years of service prior to retirement, but does that mean I have to actually be working up until I am eligible for my annuity?.

A. No, you won’t. No one who leaves government and later applies for a deferred annuity is eligible to re-enroll in the Federal Employees Health Benefits program. By the way, if you leave with fewer than 20 years of service, you wouldn’t be able to apply for a deferred annuity until you reach age 62.


About Author

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

Leave A Reply