Federal Employees Health Benefits Program (FEHB)

The IRS participates in the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program (FEHB), one of the best health care insurance programs in the world. You can choose from a variety of health care plans and options, and your IRS health benefits cover you and your family members at reasonable rates. This program offers:

  • One of the widest selections of plans in the country
  • Annual open season
  • Coverage that continues into retirement, at the same rate
  • Pre-tax options

The FEHB Program can help you meet your health care needs. Federal employees, retirees and their survivors enjoy the widest selection of health plans in the country.

Here are even more important program features:

  • No waiting periods. You can use your benefits as soon as your coverage becomes effective. There are no pre-existing condition limitations even if you change plans.
  • A choice of coverage. You can choose self-only coverage for you, or self and family coverage for you, your spouse, and unmarried dependent children under age 22. Under certain circumstances, your FEHB enrollment may cover your disabled child 22 years old or older who is incapable of self-support.
  • A choice of plans and options.
    • Fee-for-Service (FFS) plans
    • Plans offering a Point of Service (POS) product
    • Health Maintenance Organizations (HMO)
  • A Government contribution. The Government pays 72 percent of the average premium toward the total cost of the premium, but not more than 75 percent of the total premium for any plan.
  • Salary deduction. You pay your share of the premium through a payroll deduction and have the choice of doing so using pretax dollars.

If you are in an eligible position, you have 60 days from your entry on duty date to sign-up for a health insurance plan. Otherwise, you may enroll during the Federal Benefits Open Season which is held each year beginning the second Monday in November through the second Monday in December. You can also enroll or make changes outside of Open Season if you have a qualifying life event (QLE) such as the birth of a child, divorce or other qualifying event. 

If you don't make an election within 60 days from becoming eligible, you are considered to have declined coverage, and you must wait until the next open season or QLE to enroll. Except for open season, most enrollments are effective the first day of the first pay period after the agency receives your SF-2809, Health Benefits Election form. The enrollment must follow a pay period during any part of which you’re in pay status.

You can get all the latest information at the OPM web site, just go to http://www.opm.gov/insure/health/index.asp

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