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Fall 2005 Open Season Timeline for Career Employees

2005 Program Dates Election Method Comments
PostalEASE and USPS PIN Anytime. See below for open seasons. Use the PostalEASE employee Web:
• At an employee self-service kiosk (available at some facilities).
• On the Intranet at https://ewss.usps. gov/esymain.htm (from the Blue page, under "Essential Links," click PostalEASE).
• On the Internet, go to liteblue.
By phone:
• Call 877-4PS-EASE (877-477-3273).
• You must use your Employee ID, printed at the top of your earnings statement - use all eight digits, even if the first one is 0. Your Social Security number no longer is used. A USPS PIN is required - if you have forgotten your PIN, request a reminder letter via the Internet (follow instructions) or telephone (when asked to enter PIN, wait, and then you will hear a reminder for letter choice).
• Your PIN is usually mailed to your address of record the next business day.
Thrift Savings Plan Regular Contributions Anytime You may begin or change your TSP paycheck contribution dollar or percentage amount via PostalEASE. • New for 2006, TSP is eliminating the TSP percentage caps.
• The IRS maximum for 2006 is $15,000.
• Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS) employees wanting to maximize their contributions should consider making a whole dollar contribution of $15,000/26=$577 per pay period to avoid loss of USPS matching contributions.
• This becomes effective in December.
TSP 50+ Catch-Up Contributions Anytime Via PostalEASE. • You may contribute up to an additional $5,000 if you are age 50 or older during 2006.
• Catch-up contribution elections for 2006 will be accepted beginning at 12:01 P.M. CT on December 21, 2005.
• You must certify that regular TSP contributions are at TSP percentage maximum or will reach IRS maximum.
Coming to you in the mail: PostalEASE TSP Catch-Up worksheet.
TSP Investment Choices Anytime You may make your investment fund choice or interfund transfer of an existing balance by:
• Accessing the TSP Web site at
• Calling ThriftLine toll-free at 877-968-3778; TDD toll-free at 877-847-4385.
• Mailing Form TSP-50 (available from your local Personnel office) to TSP.
• You must use your TSP PIN (not your USPS PIN).
• You may request a new TSP PIN via or ThriftLine.
• TSP issues quarterly participant statements.
Federal Employees Health Benefits Opens: 11/14
Closes: 12/13
@ 5
Via PostalEASE.
It is much simpler to process your election by using the PostalEASE Employee Web than by calling PostalEASE.
• OPM requires information about dependents - you must enter this information if electing a new family plan.
• Mailing: FEHB guide (plan summary) with PostalEASE FEHB worksheet.
• Individual plan brochures available from your local Personnel office.
Flexible Spending Accounts Opens: 11/14
Closes: 12/31
@ 5
Via PostalEASE. • Health Care FSA maximum is $5,000.
• Dependent Care (day care) FSA maximum is $5,000.
• Over-the-counter medicines and drugs are eligible.
• New 2 1/2 month grace period to use up FSA contributions is explained in brochure.
Coming to you in the mail: post cards, leaflet, brochure.
Annual Leave Exchange Opens: 11/15
Closes: 12/15
@ 11:59
Via PostalEASE. • Career nonbargaining employees from Rate Schedule Codes (RSCs) E, F, S, and U may exchange from 8 to 128 hours in whole-hour increments, if annual leave balance is at least 160 hours as of the close of business on January 6, 2006.
• Bargaining employees from RSCs C, K, M, N, P, T, and Y may exchange from 8 to 40 hours in whole-hour increments, if annual leave balance is at least 440 hours, and less than 75 hours of sick leave has been used for the leave year as of the close of business on January 6, 2006.
• The lump sum is calculated on salary as of January 7, 2006. It is included in the January 27, 2006, paycheck and taxable in 2006.
Coming to you in the mail: letter about Annual Leave Exchange.
Allotments/Net-to- Bank Anytime Via PostalEASE. You must provide your financial institution's routing number and your account number.

Please post on bulletin boards through December 31, 2005.

— Compensation, Employee Resource Management, 10-27-05

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