Self, family coverage changes in retirement


Q: My wife and I are both federal employees. We each have had individual coverage under the Federal Employees Health Benefits plan since we began working for the government. We both plan on retiring next year. She will be 61 and have 26 years of service; I will be 58 and have 20 years of service. I will postpone my retirement until age 60 to avoid the penalty. We plan on converting to a family plan this open season (2010) so that I am covered during those two years of my postponement. Is this the correct way to guarantee that I maintain my eligibility under FEHB for the past five years and be able to go back to an individual FEHB plan when I begin collecting my annuity at age 60?

A: Having your wife enroll in the self and family option of her plan will assure that you have health benefits coverage during the period between when you retire and when your annuity begins. You can both revert to self-only coverage during the following 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

Leave A Reply