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Federal Employees Group Life Insurance (FEGLI)

The Federal Government established the Federal Employees' Group Life Insurance (FEGLI) Program on August 29, 1954. It is the largest group life insurance program in the world, covering over 4 million Federal employees and retirees, as well as many of their family members.

Most employees are eligible for FEGLI coverage. FEGLI provides group term life insurance. As such, it does not build up any cash value or paid-up value. It consists of Basic life insurance coverage and three options. In most cases, if you are a new Federal employee, you are automatically covered by Basic life insurance and your payroll office deducts premiums from your paycheck unless you waive the coverage. In addition to the Basic, there are three forms of Optional insurance you can elect. You must have Basic insurance in order to elect any of the options. Unlike Basic, enrollment in Optional insurance is not automatic -- you must take action to elect the options.

The cost of Basic insurance is shared between you and the Government. You pay 2/3 of the total cost and the Government pays 1/3. Your age does not affect the cost of Basic insurance. You pay the full cost of Optional insurance, and the cost depends on your age.

The Office of Federal Employees' Group Life Insurance (OFEGLI), which is a private entity that has a contract with the Federal Government, processes and pays claims under the FEGLI Program.

Election Eligibility

Unless your position is excluded from FEGLI coverage by law or regulation, you are automatically enrolled in Basic Insurance. If you do not want this coverage, you can either waive it when you first become eligible for coverage, or cancel it at a later date. Optional insurance is not automatic; you must specifically elect the types of Optional Insurance you want within 60 days of becoming eligible.

For most Bureau of Indian Education employees this will be the start of the first School Year Contract, Year Long Contract, or Permanent Federal Position. 

Other opportunities to make FEGLI Elections are Qualified Life Events or FEGLI Open Season. FEGLI Open Seasons are rare.

Loss of Eligibility

Optional Coverage C is coverage for a spouse and eligible dependent children. If the status of a family member changes which makes them no longer eligible, you will need to make adjustments to your FEGLI Coverage. Please contact your Serving Benefits Specialist for assistance.

Coverage of Children

Children must be unmarried and under age 22 to be eligible under Option C. For more information about please review page 45 of the FEGLI Handbook or contact your servicing Benefits Specialist.

Exception: A child age 22 or over is eligible only if the child is incapable of self-support because of a physical or mental disability that existed before the child reached age 22. You must notified the BIE Human Resources Benefits team prior to your child's 22nd birthday, if you want the child to be covered on or after their 22nd birthday.

FEGLI Calculator

The FEGLI Calculator allows you to determine the face value of various combinations of FEGLI coverage; calculate premiums for the various combinations of coverage; see how choosing different Options can change the amount of life insurance and the premium withholdings; and see how the life insurance carried into retirement will change over time.

FEGLI Handbook

OPM's FEGLI Handbook: https://www.opm.gov/healthcare-insurance/life-insurance/reference-materials/publications-forms/feglihandbook.pdf

FEGLI Premiums

Here is the current Premiums: https://www.opm.gov/healthcare-insurance/life-insurance/program-information/#url=Premiums-for-Employees

Bureau of Indian Education Benefit Specialist's contact information

Natalie Buckley

Fax Number: (505) 563-5305 

Email: natalie.buckley@bia.gov

Service Area: BIE headquarters and schools/offices located in NM, AZ and UT including SIPI

Stephanie Blanken

Fax Number: (505) 563-5305 

Email: stephanie.blanken@bie.edu

Services Area: Schools/offices located in KS, CA, OK, SD, ND, OR, MT including HINU and Bureau of Trust Funds Administration (BTFA) employees (formerly OST)


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