Health care coverage and retirement


Q: I have been opting out of health care coverage because I am covered by my wife’s plan, but I plan to retire under the Federal Employees Retirement System in 2016 and want to take advantage of the post-retirement health care benefits. I will enroll during the upcoming open season, but I would like to know whether I need to enroll in self and family coverage in order to have coverage for my family after I retire, or if I can enroll in self coverage now and add family members after I retire.

A: You can switch from self-only coverage to self and family coverage during any health benefits open season.


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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. Aubrey Howard on

    If I suspend my self-only coverage when I retire can I later enroll in self-plus-one during any open season after I retire?

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