OPM heads to Twitter to answer feds’ Open Season tweets

Benefits experts at the Office of Personnel Management fielded questions from federal employees and annuitants during a Twitter chat. Self-plus-one was one of t...

The Office of Personnel Management took to the Twitterverse Thursday to answer feds’ tweets about changing their health plans. Agency experts fielded questions about self-plus-one, the coverage of certain plans and why they can’t carry their federal plan into retirement.

Each year, federal workers and annuitants get the opportunity to make changes to their health care plans during Open Season. The 2015 Open Season, which ends Dec. 14, has been the busiest on record. The most likely reason is this the first time feds have been able to switch to the self-plus-one option.

Federal News Radio hosted an online chat Wednesday with federal benefits expert Walt Francis, author of the Checkbook Guide to Health Plans for Federal Employees and Annuitants. Francis also fielded Open Season questions from listeners during this week’s Your Turn show.

We also asked federal employees to send in their Open Season questions so our benefits experts could answer them. OPM’s Twitter Chat gave us the opportunity to pass on a question to the agency’s experts:

Here are some of the other tweets federal employees and annuitants sent to OPM along with the agency’s responses:

OPM added that the carryover wasn’t available for Dependent Care FSA, which has an annual grace period that runs from Jan. 1 through March 15.

Open Season is the time of year set aside for feds to make changes to health plans. Employees can also change their plans when certain Qualifying Life Events (QLE) occur, such as the birth of a child or change in employment status.

Federal employees or annuitants who still have Open Season questions can contact the OPM Retirement Information Office at 888-767-6738 or visit the OPM website for more information.

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