Health care into retirement for spouse


Q: I am a FERS federal employee planning to retire in five years. I have carried FEHB self-only since I was hired in 1998. I am planning to retire in five years and wish to add my spouse (currently with a single , nonfederal health plan) to my health plan before my retirement. Am I required to carry my spouse on my plan for five years before my retirement as well as myself?

A: No. You may switch to self and family coverage during any open season. Regardless of how long your spouse was covered, that person would be able to continue that coverage if you were to die first, but only if your spouse was receiving a survivor annuity.


About Author

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

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