FEHB insurance for a spouse and Medicare Part B coverage


Q. I am a federal employee and will retire under CSRS next year. I have kept up my medical benefits with Kaiser (self only) (FEHB) but I am also under my spouse’s medical plan with her private employer. When I retire, I plan to continue with Kaiser (self only) and with her medical plan until she retires. At the time of her retirement (she will not be offered health insurance from her employer in retirement), will she be able to enroll in FEHB as my spouse under my FEHB plan (I would change my enrollment to self and family) or will I need to enroll her in my FEHB plan (self and family) at the time of my retirement or before my retirement? It will be another six years before she plans to retire with her private employer.

Also, will I be able to postpone my Medicare Part B until she retires and then enroll in Medicare Part B at the time of her retirement without premium penalties as long as I was covered by her EGHP from my age 65 through the date of her retirement?

A. When your wife loses her private-sector health coverage, you would be able to change your enrollment from self only to self and family. Under Qualifying Life Event 2G, you cold do that from 31 days before to 60 days after her loss of coverage.

As long as she is employed and you are covered under her private sector health plan, you can postpone your enrollment in Medicare Part B without penalty.


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.

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