Blogging Employee Benefits

August 9, 2006

TSP Proposes Domestic Order Simplification

Filed under: Federal employees — Fuguerre @ 7:31 am

Formula-based court order[s] are overly complex….

An amendment to federal employee Thrift Savings Plan regulations has been proposed, seeking to restrict acceptable domestic court orders to those that would require payment of either a stated dollar amount or a stated percentage or fraction of an employee’s TSP account. [71 FR 45437]

TSP would no longer accept formula court orders, under which payment is determined by a formula yielding a “mathematically possible result.” The proposed regulation includes model paragraphs intended for use by attorneys wishing to ensure that court orders will produce the intended result and satisfy TSP’s new processing requirements. Comments on the proposed regulation are due by September 8, 2006.


August 7, 2006

OPM Proposed Rules on Waiver of Requirements for Health Care Continuation during Retirement

Filed under: Federal employees, Healthcare — Fuguerre @ 6:24 am

The Office of Personnel Management has proposed a revision to regulations under which it will waive the eligibility requirements for a federal employee to continue coverage under the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program as a retired annuitant. [Proposed Reg. 890.108]  Current regulations list specific situations where OPM will not waive FEHB eligibiity requirements, such as when the individual’s retirement is based on disability or an involuntary separation, or when the individual had been incorrectly advised by the employing office. The proposed regulations would eliminate those specific situations, providing OPM with greater flexibility in the waiver process.  Comments on the proposed regulation should be made by 10/6/2006.

March 7, 2006

Emergency Continuation Coverage for Federal Employees

Filed under: Federal employees, Healthcare — Fuguerre @ 8:31 am

If a FEHB health plan temporarily or permanently becomes incapable of providing services because of a Katrina-like disaster, federal employees will be granted the right to change health plan enrollment within 60 days of an emergency announcement by the Office of Personnel Management, under regulatory amendments proposed by OPM. [5 CFR 890, 71 FR 11287] Designation of a disaster that would trigger the special open period will be at OPM’s discretion.

If an enrollee does not change enrollment within the 60-day period, possibly due to disaster-related communications failures, then the enrollee will be considered automatically enrolled under the standard option of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Service Benefit Plan. The proposed rule does not provide a follow-up special open period for election out of that standard plan after communications have been re-established.

Comments are sought on the proposed changes by May 8, 2006.

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