The first group of Postal Support Employees (PSEs) is approaching their one-year anniversary, which means that they will soon be able to sign-up for health insurance.
PSEs are eligible to sign-up for federal employees’ health benefits following one full year of continuous employment with no breaks in service of more than 5 days. Further, the PSEs must maintain sufficient earnings each pay period so that premiums can be withheld from their pay after mandatory deductions for Social Security, Medicare and federal tax are made.
According to the Collective Bargaining Agreement, the USPS will contribute 75 percent of the premium costs if PSEs choose to enroll in the APWU Consumer Driven Health Plan, with employees paying the remaining 25 percent. Should they decide to enroll in other Federal Employee Health Benefit plans, they will be required to pay 100 percent of the premium costs for other plans.
APWU Posted Guidelines on How and When to Enroll
The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) will send PSEs a 2012 Guide to Benefits For Certain Temporary (non-Career) USPS Employees, which is similar to the booklets career employees receive during open season. To enroll, employees must complete the PostalEASE FEHB Worksheet and send it to Shared Services, at PO BOX 970400, Greensboro NC 27497-0400. Once they are enrolled, employees will be able to use PostalEASE to make changes.
Coverage will be effective the first day of the first pay period after the Postal Service receives an enrollment form, if employees have been assigned for another 360 days.
PSEs must enroll within 60 days of eligibility or they will have to wait for the next Health Plan Open Season to sign-up.
Managers cannot give employees a six-day break to prevent them from achieving eligibility for insurance. They can assign five-day breaks before workers complete 360 days, but such employees will be eligible, provided they reach 360 days after the break.
For additional information, employees can call Shared Services at 1-877-477-3273, and select Option 5, Shunn-King said. “You also can call me or e-mail me,” she said, at email@example.com or 202-842-4227.