FYI / News You Can Still Use
By the time you read this article, Open Season (November 8 through December 13) for health care selections / options will be closed. However, that doesn’t mean you might not have to make a decision regarding your health care coverage before the next open season. CCAs have health care decisions to make within 60 days of being hired, or within 60 days of being reappointed to another 360-day term after the required five-day break in service. At that point in time, CCAs may choose to enroll in the USPS Noncareer Health Benefits Plan. If you choose to sign up for the USPS plan, the Postal Service will make a biweekly contribution towards the total premium for any CCA employee who wishes to participate. If you select the self only option the USPS will pay $125 toward the plan or the minimum required by the Patient Protection and Affordable
Care Act. For self plus one or self and family the Postal Service will pay 65% percent of the total premium.
Effective in 2022, the Postal Service will be contributing 75% of the premiums for self only, self plus one or self and family coverage. This CCA right to health insurance is part of our National Agreement and I would encourage all of our CCA brothers and sisters to take advantage of this health coverage (even if it is somewhat limited) to protect themselves and their families. Of course, CCAs may enroll or participate in any Federal Employees Health Benefit plan or (FEHB), after completing one 360-day term and being reappointed. However, there would be no Postal Service contribution toward the premium making the choice very costly and prohibitive.
Once a CCA is converted to career status they have 60 days to enroll in the Federal Employees Health Benefit plan or (FEHB) including the NALC Health Benefit Plan. You should receive in the mail information regarding plans that are available and the cost of those plans. Please remember if you were enrolled in the USPS Noncareer Plan and you have been converted to a career position your enrollment in the USPS plan will be terminated either the last day of the month, that is 28 days after the conversion, or sooner if you choose to enroll in an FEHB plan which would be the date the coverage begins, whichever is earlier.
As they say in life, timing is everything, so if you fail to enroll during the 60-day period of eligibility you will have to wait till the next open season. The only exception to making changes outside the 60-day window or the Open Season itself is if you have a “qualifying life event” or (QLE) such as getting married or the birth of a child. For more information
regarding QLE events or for enrolling in the Noncareer Health Benefit Plan go to liteblue.usps.gov/ human resources/benefits.
As we head into what they are now calling the fourth wave of this coronavirus pandemic, I would like to wish you and your families the happiest of holidays and a safe, Covid-free healthy and prosperous New Year! Stay safe, mask up, and get boosted!
Executive Vice President