There are certain times throughout the year that eligible employees can enroll or make changes to their benefits.
Explore the different enrollment periods below:
Initial Enrollment Period
An Initial Enrollment Period is a 30-day window of time when an employee can enroll in newly eligible benefits. A newly hired full-time employee, an employee moving from part-time to full-time employment, or a part-time employee achieving non-probationary status are all examples of employees experiencing an initial enrollment period. The coverage effective date of enrolled benefits is the first of the month following the start date or employment status change. For example, if an employee's full-time start date is February 12, the effective date of coverage is March 1. When an employee becomes newly eligible for benefits, Human Resources provides information to the employee about their options and how to enroll.
Open Enrollment Period
An Open Enrollment Period is a window of time when a benefits-eligible employee can make any changes to their eligible benefits. LCC's Open Enrollment Period is normally a two-week period each year in early November. The exact dates will vary. The effective date of any coverage changes will be January 1 of the following calendar year. Communications about Open Enrollment are sent by Human Resources to eligible employees through direct emails and the weekly Operations and Star communications.
What is a life event?
Employees cannot make changes to their benefit elections during the year outside initial eligibility or Open Enrollment unless they experience a Life Event.
Life Event Examples (not an exhaustive list):
- Change in legal marital status (i.e. marriage, divorce, legal separation, annulment)
- Change in the number of dependents (i.e. birth, death, adoption, placement for adoption)
- Change in a covered dependent's status (i.e. a dependent becomes eligible or ineligible for benefits)
- Change in coverage made by your spouse or other covered dependent permitted under the spouse's or covered dependent's employer's benefit plan due to a Life Event
- Change in an election made by your spouse or other covered dependent during an open enrollment period under your spouse's or other covered dependent's employer's benefit plan that relates to a period that is different from the plan year for LCC's plan (for example, your spouse's open enrollment period is in July and your spouse changes coverage) (not available for the Health Care FSA)
- Change in your dependent care provider or cost of dependent care (a significant increase or decrease) (available for the Dependent Care FSA only)
- You, your spouse, or other covered dependent become eligible for continuation coverage under COBRA or USERRA
- A judgment, decree, or order resulting from a divorce, legal separation, annulment, or change in legal custody (including a Qualified Medical Child Support Order), is entered by a court of competent jurisdiction that requires accident or health coverage for your child
- You, your spouse, or other covered dependent become enrolled under Part A, Part B, or Part D of Medicare or under Medicaid (other than coverage solely with respect to the distribution of pediatric vaccines)
- You, your spouse, or other covered dependent become eligible for a Special Open Enrollment Period
For Life Events, employees must follow the Consistency Rule, which means the changes made to benefit elections must be consistent with the Life Event.
Consistency Rule Examples:
- If your dependent care provider changes, you could not change your medical insurance elections, but you could change your elections relating to the Dependent Care FSA.
- If one of your dependents no longer qualifies as a covered dependent, you could cancel coverage for that dependent, but you could not cancel coverage for your other covered dependents.
- If you have single coverage and you marry, you may elect two-person or family coverage, as applicable.
If you are not sure the election change you would like to make is consistent with the Life Event, you should contact Human Resources.
How do I make life event changes?
If you want to change an election because of a Life Event, you must submit a written request to Human Resources and identify the event that resulted in the change. The change request must be filed on or before the date that is 30 calendar days after the date of the Life Event. The change in coverage generally will be effective as of the date of the event. For example, if the event is the birth or adoption of an eligible dependent child, the change in coverage will be retroactively effective to the date of the birth or adoption. If one or more payroll periods have passed since the event date, additional benefit contributions will be withheld from subsequent paychecks to place you in the position you would have been in had your new election been in effect at the date of the event.
If you file a request for a change in coverage more than 30 days after the date of the Life Event, the requested change will not take effect, and you will have to wait until the next Open Enrollment Period, Special Enrollment Period, or until you experience another consistent Life Event to make the change.
Per the U.S. Department of Labor, the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) gives workers and their families who lose their health benefits the right to choose to continue group health benefits provided by their group health plan for limited periods of time under certain circumstances such as voluntary or involuntary job loss, reduction in the hours worked, transition between jobs, death, divorce, and other life events.
Enrollment under COBRA allows employees and their families the opportunity for a temporary extension of health coverage (called continuation coverage) in certain instances where coverage under the plan would otherwise end. Qualified individuals may be required to pay the entire premium for coverage up to 102% of the cost to the plan.
LCC's COBRA administrator is PlanSource. If an employee or covered spouse or dependent experiences a COBRA-eligible event, PlanSource will issue notice to the employee or covered spouse or dependent outlining how to elect continuation coverage, premiums, and how to submit payment to PlanSource for the coverage.
LCC Cobra Monthly Premiums (cost)
Coverage WMHIP PPO Select WMHIP PPO Versatile WMHIP Flexible Blue WMHIP PPO Plan 3 WMHIP Essential HDHP Single $814.27 $744.80 $690.90 $654.14 $584.76 Two Person $1,832.07 $1,675.75 $1,554.47 $1,471.79 $1,315.67 Family $2,279.94 $2,085.40 $1,934.28 $1,831.40 $1,637.14
Coverage Dental Basic Plan Dental Premium Plan Single $40.26 $47.23 Two Person $90.87 $114.75 Family $109.07 $141.84
Coverage Dental Basic Plan Dental Premium Plan Employee Only $68.65 $75.61
Coverage Vision Single $4.66 Two Person $8.84 Family $12.99
Coverage Vision Employee Only $4.66
Life Event Documentation
If an employee is making changes to their benefits due to a Life Event, the employee will have to provide official documentation to Human Resources as proof of the event such as a marriage certificate, divorce decree, birth/adoption certificate, official letter displaying loss of other coverage, etc.
If an employee adds a new spouse or dependent to their benefits, the employee will have to provide copies of official documentation to Human Resources that prove the relationship status.
See below for documentation options:
Marriage Certificate AND One form of documentation establishing current marital status such as joint household or utility bill, joint bank account, joint lease, etc.
Page one and two (signature page) of your jointly filed federal tax return for most current year
Child Under Age 19
Birth Certificate or Adoption decree naming you as the child's parent
Page one and two (signature page) of your federal tax return for most current year showing dependent
Child Ages 19 – 25
Birth Certificate or Adoption decree naming you as the child's parent AND the Affidavit of Dependency Form for Dental/Vision Insurance*
Page one and two (signature page) of your federal tax return for most current year showing dependent AND the Affidavit of Dependency Form for Dental/Vision Insurance*
OPTION 3 (DISABILITY)
A current letter from the attending physician detailing the disability, stating the child is 1) totally and permanently disabled and 2) incapable of self-sustaining employment AND Page one and two (signature page) of your federal tax return for most current year showing dependent
*Affidavit only required for enrollment in dental and/or vision insurance
Child Age 26 and Older (Medical Insurance Only)
Birth Certificate or Adoption decree naming you as the child's parent, Affidavit of Dependency Form for Medical Insurance, AND official documentation of full-time student status (if applicable)
Page one and two (signature page) of your federal tax return for most current year showing dependent, Affidavit of Dependency Form for Medical Insurance, AND official documentation of full-time student status (if applicable)
Contact your HR Benefits Team at LCC-HR-Benefits@star.lcc.edu