government

Can federal employees
have both government
and private life insurance?

 

 Life Insurance for Federal Employees

Federal employees in the United States are, in almost all cases, covered by the Federal Employees’ Group Life Insurance (FEGLI)1. New federal employees are automatically enrolled in FEGLI’s basic plan. From there, employees can choose to remain in the Basic or enhance coverage through three additional plans (see chart below).

FEGLI is group term life insurance. So, it does not build cash or paid-up value. While the government will pay a third of the cost for basic life insurance, the other options are solely the responsibility of the employee, and costs can change based on age. Worse, FEGLI can become expensive after you’ve reached the age of 50.3

What if you want something different? Can federal employees have both government and private life insurance?

Yes. You can buy private life insurance alongside your FEGLI coverage to better fit your lifestyle. Whole life insurance, which does build cash value, can complement FEGLI plans, but we recommend you make a list of your specific circumstances and build a private life insurance plan to fit those needs.

As always, please check with your Human Resources department for any specific policies that may affect your insurance coverage.

 

Overview of FEGLI Plans2

Basic

Cost each biweekly pay period: 15¢ per $1,000 of coverage (Free for postal employees)

Cost increases with age?: No

Newly eligible employees automatically enrolled?: Yes, unless you waive coverage

Option A

Amount of Coverage: $10,000

Who is Covered?: You

Cost each biweekly pay period: Starting at 20¢

Cost increases with age?: Yes

Newly eligible employees automatically enrolled?: No, you must elect this coverage

Option B

Amount of Coverage: 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 multiples of your salary rounded up to the next $1,000

Who is Covered?: You

Cost each biweekly pay period: Starting at 2¢ per $1,000 of coverage

Cost increases with age?: Yes

Newly eligible employees automatically enrolled?: No, you must elect this coverage

Option C

Amount of Coverage: 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 multiples. Each multiple equals $5,000 for the life of your spouse and $2,500 for the life of each eligible child

Who is Covered?: Your spouse and unmarried dependent children under age 22

Cost each biweekly pay period: Starting at 22¢ per multiple

Cost increases with age?: Yes

Newly eligible employees automatically enrolled?: No, you must elect this coverage

 

1 https://www.opm.gov/healthcare-insurance/life-insurance/

2 https://www.opm.gov/healthcare-insurance/flyers/life-insurance-overview.pdf

3 https://www.fedweek.com/taxes-insurance/fegli-optional-coverage-gets-costly-after-age-50/

 

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