FEHB and Medicare Part B


Q. I am a retired CSRS employee, and my wife is a retired FERS employee. I am currently 63 and my wife is 61. We are both covered under my FEHB insurance as part of my annuity. I keep reading about whether or not I should pick up Medicare Part B, but there does not seem to be a clear-cut answer. It seems to depend upon your health, current out-of-pocket expenses for medicine, office visits, etc., compared to the annual cost of Part B. I have seen several articles point out the 10 percent penalty for delaying enrollment. My question is, if I enroll when I turn 65, and then determine that my savings do not justify the extra costs of Part B, can I drop out of Part B at a later date?
A. You can drop Part B later, but it isn’t easy. You’ll find that there is no form for this readily available. You’ll have to go to a Social Security office and make your request to withdraw from Part B, in person.


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Mike Miles is a Certified Financial Planner licensee and principal adviser for Variplan LLC, an independent fiduciary in Vienna, Virginia. Email your financial questions to fedexperts@federaltimes.com and view his blog at money.federaltimes.com.

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