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5:18 pm, October 31, 2014

Benefits News

Fiscal cliff, sequestration and more

Federal Times senior writers Sean Reilly and Stephen Losey will update us on sequestration, buyouts, and the big issues affecting federal workers in 2013.
December 19, 2012

Wednesday - 12/19/2012, 08:13pm EST
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Obama Social Security offer at odds with top Dems

President Barack Obama's offer to limit the growth of Social Security benefits would cost the average retiree less than $50 in the first year. But the cuts would grow over time, and that has advocates for seniors worried that Democrats in Congress will break their promise to shield the massive retirement and disability program from cuts in deficit reduction talks.

Wednesday - 12/19/2012, 02:01pm EST

Compromise hits highest/lowest incomes

In the fiscal-cliff talks, it now appears that both sides have blinked. Republicans appear willing to accept some higher taxes and Democrats seem to have agreed that Social Security's growing costs must be curtailed. Slightly and slowly. So how will the proposals affect you? Check out Senior Correspondent Mike Causey's column.

Wednesday - 12/19/2012, 02:00am EST

Fed groups pounce on Obama's COLA-cutting proposal

In the latest proposals traded back and forth between the White House and Boehner, the President proposed changing the formula the Labor Department uses to measure inflation which would reduce annual COLAs for Social Security beneficiaries, including federal and military retirees. Federal-employee unions and groups remain worried the COLA proposals are still very much on the table.

Tuesday - 12/18/2012, 05:10pm EST

FERS pioneers examine past, present and future of retirement fund

In the 25 years since the Federal Employees Retirement System went into effect, much has changed when it comes to federal retirement. Tom Trabucco, the former longtime director of external affairs at the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board, and Judy Park, the former legislative director of the National Active and Retired Federal Employees (NARFE) Association, joined Your Turn with Mike Causey for a look back at the creation of FERS and how it has evolved over the years.

Wednesday - 12/12/2012, 08:02pm EST
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25 years later, FERS still 'excellent' plan for feds

Arthur Stein, a financial planner and former federal manager, told The Federal Drive with Tom Temin and Emily Kopp Wednesday that FERS has been a boon for feds, both young and old.

Wednesday - 12/12/2012, 12:13pm EST
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Federal Drive Interviews -- Dec. 7, 2012

Carmen Middleton talks about overcoming stereotypes at the CIA. Paul Wormeli of IBM talk about how new technology is improving communication between law enforcement agencies. Registered employee benefit consultant Ed Zurndorfer offers tips for last minute Open Season choices.

Friday - 12/07/2012, 12:08pm EST

Your health plan and the Nixon curse

Did you ever hear of the Nixon curse? Are you sick of having people push you to shop around for a health insurance plan? If so, rejoice, because Monday is the deadline for picking your 2013 health plan. After that, you won't have all those confusing options to kick around anymore for a long time, Senior Correspondent Mike Causey says.

Friday - 12/07/2012, 02:00am EST

FEHBP open season part 2

Insurance expert Walton Francis will answer your questions and emails about federal benefits.
December 5, 2012

Wednesday - 12/05/2012, 08:08pm EST
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Health premiums: It pays to go postal

The health-insurance hunting season ends next Monday. When shopping around, this is a case where it pays to go postal if you can, Senior Correspondent Mike Causey says.

Wednesday - 12/05/2012, 02:00am EST

New inflation gauge would cut benefits, hike taxes

Tweaking the way the government measures inflation sounds like an obscure method to help reduce budget deficits, but over time it would lead to significantly lower Social Security benefits while increasing taxes, mainly on low- and middle-income families.

Tuesday - 12/04/2012, 04:45pm EST

Insurance options to consider as Open Season draws to a close

Benefits consultant Walton Francis offers top tips for federal employees considering a new health plan. Open Season runs from Nov. 12 to Dec. 10.

Monday - 12/03/2012, 03:17pm EST
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Reality check: Shop or drop this Open Season

For most federal workers and retirees going over the fiscal cliff in January isn't the problem du jour. If you or a family member gets really sick, or has a serious accident in the new year that is reality, Senior Correspondent Mike Causey says. That, rightly so, will be your No. 1 problem. And whether you come out of it alive and kicking or financially strapped could depend on what you do between now and next Monday.

Monday - 12/03/2012, 02:00am EST

Secret retirement bonus plan

Did you hear about the secret retirement- incentive plan in Congress? It would give you a cash buyout, and add five years to your age and years of service in order to boost your annuity. It is perfect in its simplicity except for one vexing detail - it's not true, Senior Correspondent Mike Causey says.

Friday - 11/30/2012, 02:00am EST

Playing catch-up with health insurance

Long before there was the Affordable Care Act, aka ObamaCare, there was the Federal Employee Health Benefits Program, which actually became a model for the new health-care law, Senior Correspondent Mike Causey says.

Thursday - 11/29/2012, 02:00am EST

FEHBP open season

Walton Francis, author of the Consumer's Checkbook Guide to Federal Health Plans, will provide tips on what to look for when choosing your health benefits.
November 28, 2012

Thursday - 11/29/2012, 12:08am EST
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The end is near, seriously!

Not to put a damper on things but you have less than two weeks to pick your health plan and less than a month until the end of the world. We can help you big time with the first deadline, but when it comes to the Mayan calendar warnings, you are on your own, Senior Correspondent Mike Causey says.

Wednesday - 11/28/2012, 02:00am EST

Feds with families hardest hit by proposed changes to workers' comp

Disabled federal workers with dependents would be among the hardest hit by proposed changes to federal workers' compensation benefits, according to an analysis by the Government Accountability Office. The Labor Department has proposed setting a uniform level of compensation 70 percent of the pre-injury salary regardless of dependents and further reducing benefits to 50 percent when employees reach retirement age. But in its report which simulated those proposed changes, GAO raised concerns about the effects on beneficiaries.

Tuesday - 11/27/2012, 07:11pm EST

Jimmy Choo at Payless Shoes?

Wouldn't it be great if you could get Jimmy Choo shoes or Savile Row suits at Payless Shoes or Wal-Mart? The hitch is you can't, and it's a reality federal workers and retirees need to consider when picking their 2013 health plan, Senior Correspondent Mike Causey says.

Tuesday - 11/27/2012, 02:00am EST

Two's a couple, three's a family!

Whether your family consists of just a husband or you have 18 dependents, a family is a family as far as Uncle Sam is concerned. And that ticks off couples who resent paying the same health premiums as those charged a large family, Senior Correspondent Mike Causey says. Is that right?

Monday - 11/26/2012, 02:00am EST
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