Federal employees, including more than 118,000 postal employees, who weren’t eligible for Federal Employee Dental and Vision Insurance Program (FEDVIP) will soon be able to purchase coverage.
A rule that proposed in 2021 was officially published by OPM on July 25th. The rule confirms that federal employees, who are working on a temporary, seasonal, or intermittent status may now be eligible for federal dental and vision plans. As long as the workers are putting in at 130 hours per month for at least 90 days, they should be eligible for FEDVIP now. At the US Postal Service, employees who match these criteria are often referred to as “pre-career” employees and became eligible for Federal Employee Health Benefits (FEHB) in 2015.
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There are certain federal firefighters, who do not meet the 130-hour and 90-day requisites, that might also now be eligible for FEDVIP plans. Their employing agency will determine whether they are or not. Generally, for federal emergency responders who work in wildland fire protection and gained FEHB eligibility in 2012, they are believed to be included in the OPM’s new rule.
Research conducted in 2021 and 2022 concluded that 72,100 federal employees and 118,609 postal workers will be eligible for FEDVIP thanks to the new rule. While FEDVIP premiums are not expected to experience a “significant” impact from the new enrollees. With that in mind, there is some evidence that suggests firefighters experience slightly more vision and dental problems than the general population.
Starting the day an employing agency notifies an employee of their eligibility, there will be a 60-day enrollment period for them to obtain FEDVIP coverage. If this period is missed, however, FEDVIP open season is in late November/early December at the same time as the FEHB open season. Eligible federal employees and retirees can change or add health, dental, and vision insurance during these annual open seasons.
Until Next Time,
**Written by Benjamin Derge, Financial Planner, ChFEBC℠ The information has been obtained from sources considered reliable but we do not guarantee that the foregoing material is accurate or complete. Any opinions are those of Benjamin Derge and not necessarily those of RJFS or Raymond James. Links are being provided for information purposes only. Expressions of opinion are as of this date and are subject to change without notice. Raymond James is not affiliated with and does not endorse, authorize, or sponsor any of the listed websites or their respective sponsors.