About Federal Benefits
Once you have received and accepted your final offer of employment, you will immediately be eligible to enroll in a wide variety of benefits that are available to all Federal employees.
To enroll in these programs, you will need specific information about your employment. Some or all of the following information may be required:
◾Social Security Number
◾Date of Birth
◾Service Computation Date (date of Entrance on Duty)
◾Pay Plan or Pay Schedule
◾Pay Grade and Step
Below, you will find a list of the major benefits for which you can enroll, along with a brief description of each. At the bottom of the page, you will find a list of links to these benefits.
Federal Employee Health Benefit (FEHB)
As a Federal employee, you are entitled to enroll yourself and any eligible family members in a health plan offered under the FEHB Program, unless your position is excluded from coverage by law or regulation. If you meet the requirements, you will be eligible to continue group coverage into retirement.
There are two types of enrollment: Self Only and Self and Family. A Self and Family enrollment covers you, your spouse, and your unmarried dependent children under age 22.
Federal Employees Dental and Vision Insurance Program (FEDVIP)
Dental and Vision Plans are provided for employees, retirees, and dependents based on the Federal Employee Dental and Vision Benefits Enhancement Act of 2004. Each plan includes the option for a Standard or High coverage option as well as various enrollment options of self only, self plus one, and self & family. The available rates and plans vary based on location.
All employees, retirees, and dependents except TCC Enrollees, temporary employees with appointments NTE 1 year, seasonal employees working less than 6 months in a calendar year, and annuitants with a deferred annuity are eligible for dental and/or vision coverage. Enrollment in FEDVIP is not mandatory.
Federal Flexible Spending Account(s) (FSAFeds)
Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) allow employees to set aside pre-tax dollars to help cover expenses related to health care, child care and/or adult dependent care. Since most of us already spend money on deductibles, co-pays, prescriptions, and dependent care, FSAs can help to mitigate the cost of these expenses due to the tax-free nature of the accounts. For the federal government, third party provider, Sykes Health Plan Services (SHPS), Inc. administers all FSAs. There are three types of FSAs available – Health Care FSA, Limited Expense FSA and Dependent Care FSA.
Federal Long-Term Care Insurance (FLTCIP)
The Office of Personnel Management has partnered with John Hancock Life & Health Insurance Company to provide long term care insurance with affordable group premiums and comprehensive benefits. Long term care insurance provides reimbursement for costs of care when you are unable to perform at least two activities of daily living (eating, dressing, bathing, etc.) for an expected period of at least 90 days, or when you need constant supervision due to a severe cognitive impairment. Federal Employees Health Benefits plans do not cover the cost of long term care. While Medicare covers some care in nursing homes and at home, it does so only for a limited time, subject to restrictions. There is no Government contribution to FLTCIP premiums. You are eligible to apply for FLTCIP at anytime.
Federal Employee Group Life Insurance (FEGLI)
FEGLI is Group Term Life Insurance coverage that builds no cash or loan value. New employees are automatically covered under the FEGLI program. New Employees receive Basic Insurance; however, within 31 days of appointment, new employees may elect optional coverage. Election of optional coverage or waiver of basic coverage may be made through EBIS electronically or via the SF-2817 form.
Employees who are on a temporary appointment NTE 1 year and employees who work an intermittent schedule are ineligible for coverage under FEGLI.
Thrift Savings Plan (TSP)
TSP is one of the most important benefits for eligible federal employees. TSP is a 403(a) retirement plan, which is similar to a 401(k), but is a section of the Internal Revenue Code that allows for salary deferments. TSP allows federal employees to contribute bi-weekly to a retirement savings and investment plan before tax contributions. Both EBIS and the TSP website offer services to federal employees.