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Office of Personnel Management has announced Federal Benefits Open Season

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The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) has announced the Federal Benefits Open Season for the Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) Program, the Federal Flexible Spending Accounts Program (FSAFEDS), and the Federal Employees Dental and Vision Insurance Program (FEDVIP).  The Open Season enrollment period for all three programs begins on Monday, November 12, 2018, and runs through Monday, December 10, 2018.  FEHB Open Season enrollments or changes will be effective January 6, 2019, and will be reflected on the Leave and Earnings Statement (LES) for the pay period ending January 19, 2019.    


During the 2018 Open Season, employees may enroll, change health plans or options, cancel enrollment, change to Self Only, Self Plus One, or Self and Family, and  waive or begin participation in premium conversion.  NOTE:  Self Plus One is a new enrollment type in the FEHB Program that allows enrollees to cover themselves and one eligible family member they designate to be covered.  Family member eligibility for a Self Plus One enrollment is the same as for a Self and Family enrollment.  A family member eligible for a Self Plus One enrollment includes either a spouse OR a child under the age of 26.  A child over the age of 26 who is deemed incapable of self-support because of a mental or physical disability that existed before age 26 is also an eligible family member.


Additionally, based on the Supreme Court's decision in Obergefell v. Hodges, published June 26, 2015, all states are now required to allow same-sex couples to marry.  Because all states now allow same-sex marriage, agencies will no longer add children of same-sex domestic partners to FEHB enrollments as no new children are eligible. As such, couples must be married in order to cover (or continue to cover) stepchildren under their FEHB and FEDVIP enrollment.


Detailed information regarding Open Season may be found on the OPM website at https://www.opm.gov/healthcare-insurance/open-season/.


For a summary of benefits on the FEHB, FEDVIP, and FSAFEDS programs, employees may view the Open Season Guides at https://www.opm.gov/healthcare-insurance/healthcare/plan-information/guides/ .


Once you have opened the web page, please click on the "2015" tab next to the "Guides Overview" tab to review guides that provide summary information for each Federal Benefit Program.  Permanent employees will review Guide number RI 70-1 and temporary employees will review Guide number RI 70-8.  


Employees can access the myPers website at https://myPers.af.mil to obtain information on changes for the 2018 plan year.  Once logged into the website, employees should follow the applicable navigation path for each benefit program:


-  FEHB - Civilian/ Employee/ Benefits and Entitlements/ Health Insurance/Open Season 12 November through 10 December 2018


-  FSAFEDS - Civilian/ Employee/ Benefits and Entitlements/ Flexible Spending Account/ Open Season 12 November through 10 December 2018


-  FEDVIP - Civilian/ Employee/ Benefits and Entitlements/ Dental and Vision Insurance/ Open Season 12 November through 10 December 2018


-  Premium Conversion - Civilian/ Employee/ Benefits and Entitlements/Health Insurance/ Premium Conversion

Employees must use the Government Retirement and Benefits (GRB) Platform to make all Open Season health benefit changes.  Employees will be able to print a copy of the SF 2809, Health Benefits Enrollment Form, after the transaction is completed.  The GRB Platform may be accessed via the myPers website at https://myPers.af.mil, then select "Government Retirement and Benefits (GRB) Application" 


Please note that employees who are retiring prior to the effective date of Open Season enrollments (6 January 2019) should attach a copy of the SF 2809 with their retirement application.  They should not use the GRB Platform to make an FEHB Open Season election. 


Employees wishing to enroll in FSAFEDS must submit their enrollment directly through the FSAFEDS website at www.fsafeds.com <http://www.fsafeds.com> . Employees must reenroll in FSAFEDS each year to participate.  Enrollments do not automatically continue from year to year.   


Employees wishing to enroll in FEDVIP must submit their Open Season enrollment through the BENEFEDS website at www.benefeds.com <http://www.benefeds.com> or by contacting a BENEFEDS representative at 1-877-888-FEDS.  Coverage for Open Season elections are effective 1 January 2019.


NOTE:  As a reminder OPM is no longer producing the Guide to Federal Benefits (Guide). This includes both the printed and online versions of the Guide. OPM has determined that it is no longer cost effective to produce the Guide and due to the implementation of the Going Green Initiative in 2010, an increasing number of  agencies are turning toward online resources for information about the federal benefits programs instead of ordering printed copies of the Guide.  Employees must utilize the online comparison tool found on OPM's website at https://www.opm.gov/healthcare-insurance/healthcare/plan-information/compare -plans/ or review  each carrier's individual FEHB plan brochure by state at https://www.opm.gov/healthcare-insurance/healthcare/plan-information/plans/.