OPM Announces Changes to Long Term Insurance for Opposite Sex Partners

Expanded eligibility has been announced for applying for coverage under the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program (FLTCIP). The change will be effective on November 30th.

On November 4th, OPM announced an expansion of eligibility to apply for coverage under the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program (FLTCIP).  The change will be effective on November 30th.  It is important to note that enrollment in FLTCIP requires that the eligible individual complete an underwriting process to determine if they will be allowed to enroll.

Currently the following individuals are eligible to apply for Long Term Insurance through FLTCIP:

  • Federal and USPS employees and retirees;
  • Active and retired members of the armed forces;
  • Spouses and same-sex domestic partners of the above;
  • Surviving spouses of the above who are receiving a survivor annuity from OPM;
  • Adult children of the above; and
  • Parents, parents-in-law or step parents of eligible employees (note that parents, parents-in-law and step parents of retirees and active or retired members of the armed forces are not allowed to apply.

To be added to this list on November 30th are opposite-sex partners and the adult children of opposite-sex partners of the above.

OPM also listed the requirements for a domestic partnership.  A declaration of domestic partnership will be required at the time of application and can be found on the FLTCIP webpage, http://www.ltcfeds.com.   Basically, the term “domestic partnership” is defined as a committed relationship between two adults of the opposite or same sex, in which the partners –

  1. Are each other’s sole domestic partner and intend to remain so indefinitely;
  2. Maintain a common residence, and intend to continue to do so (or would maintain a common residence but for an assignment abroad or other employment-related, financial, or similar obstacle);
  3. Are at least 18 years of age and mentally competent to consent to a contract;
  4. Share responsibility for a significant measure of each other’s financial obligations;
  5. Are not married or joined in a civil union to anyone else;
  6. Are not a domestic partner of anyone else;
  7. Are not related in a way that would prohibit legal marriage in the U. S. jurisdiction in which the domestic partnership was formed; and
  8. Certify that they understand that willful falsification of the information within the documentation may lead to disciplinary action and the recovery of the cost of benefits received related to such falsification and may constitute a criminal violation under 18 U.S.C. 1001.

Information for this article came from OPM Benefits Administration Letter 15-901 and The Answer Book on Your Federal Employee Benefits (published by LRP Publications http://www.lrp.com).

Agencies can request to have John Grobe, or another of Federal Career Experts' qualified instructors, deliver a retirement or transition seminar to their employees. FCE instructors are not financial advisers and will not sell or recommend financial products to class participants. Agency Benefits Officers can contact John Grobe at johnfgrobe@comcast.net to discuss schedules and costs.

About the Author

John Grobe is President of Federal Career Experts, a firm that provides pre-retirement training and seminars to a wide variety of federal agencies. FCE’s instructors are all retired federal retirement specialists who educate class participants on the ins and outs of federal retirement and benefits; there is never an attempt to influence participants to invest a certain way, or to purchase any financial products. John and FCE specialize in retirement for special category employees, such as law enforcement officers.