United States District Court, District of Columbia
JON C. COOPER, Plaintiff,
UNITED STATES OFFICE OF PERSONNEL MANAGEMENT, Defendant.
BERMAN JACKSON United States District Judge.
matter is before the Court on Defendant's Motion for
Summary Judgment [Dkt. # 11] and Plaintiff's Motion to
Amend Complaint [Dkt. # 14]. For the reasons discussed below,
the Court will grant the former and deny the latter.
employees may participate in the Federal Employees' Group
Life Insurance Program (“FEGLI”). See
Mem. of Law in Supp. of Mot. for Summ. J. [Dkt. # 11-1]
(“Def.'s Mem.”) at 3. The government of the
United States “is the policyholder under a policy of
life insurance issued by a commercial company” which
administers claims under FEGLI through its Office of Federal
Employees' Group Life Insurance. Id. at 4. An
employee is automatically eligible for and covered under
FEGLI unless he affirmatively waives Basic coverage.
Id. at 6, citing 5 U.S.C. § 8701(a)-(b) and 5
C.F.R. § 870.301(a). An employee may elect to cancel
coverage at any time by submitting his request in writing.
See id., citing 5 C.F.R. § 807.502(a).
Ordinarily, coverage ceases upon the employee's
separation from federal service. Id. However,
coverage may be continued under certain circumstances, and
relevant to this case is the following provision:
case of any employee who retires on an immediate annuity and
has been insured under this chapter throughout -
(A) the 5 years of service immediately preceding the date of
the employee's retirement, or
(B) the full period or periods of service during which
the employee was entitled to be insured, if fewer than 5
years, life insurance, without accidental death and
dismemberment insurance, may be continued, under conditions
determined by the Office [of Personnel Management].
5 U.S.C. § 8706(b)(1) (emphasis added).
Office of Personnel Management (“OPM”)
illustrates the application of § 8706(b)(1)(B), known as
the “all opportunity” requirement, with this
example from the FEGLI Handbook:
Amy waived all FEGLI when she was first employed in 1973. She
left Federal service in 2003 and returned to service in 2011.
When she returned to service, she was automatically enrolled
in Basic insurance her very first day. She retired 11/30/12.
Amy did not meet the 5-year requirement for continuing her
FEGLI coverage (she waived it back in 1973). Her “first
opportunity” to enroll was in 1973. Since she did not
have the coverage for the full period of service it was
available to her, she also didn't meet the
all-opportunity requirement. Therefore, Amy was not eligible
to continue any of her FEGLI coverage into retirement.
Def.'s Mem. at 7-8 (excerpt from FEGLI Handbook). Breaks
in service are not considered. See id. at
was an employee of the Environmental Protection Agency from
May 27, 1979 to February 4, 1983, when he left the federal
service. Administrative R., Ex. to Def.'s Mem. [Dkt. #
11-3] (“AR”) at OPM 056; Compl. [Dkt. # 1] at 2.
He waived FEGLI coverage twice: on May 31, 1979 and March 12,
1981. AR at OPM 004-005. When plaintiff joined the United
States Coast Guard as a civilian employee, he selected Basic
FEGLI coverage effective May 21, 2011. AR at OPM 003;
see Compl. at 1. He retired on May 31, 2014. AR at
elected Basic FEGLI life insurance coverage “as part of
his retirement package from the . . . Coast Guard, but his
application was denied by OPM.” Compl. at 1. On or
about September 8, 2015, plaintiff sought reconsideration of
the initial decision, but the agency denied his request