You can enroll yourself and your eligible dependents:
- Upon employment in a benefit-eligible position or attaining benefit eligibility status. Coverage is effective on the first of the month following completion of initial 30-day eligibility period
- Upon experiencing a relevant qualifying event, within 31 days of the date of the event (coverage will be effective the first of the month after the Employee Benefit Services Section receives the completed paperwork)
- During the annual Open Enrollment in the fall of each year
CAN I ENROLL LATER IF I DID NOT CHOOSE TO ENROLL?
If you have benefits from another group plan and waive coverage in the County plans, but then lose your other coverage, you will have 31 days from the qualifying event (the loss of your other benefits) to elect coverage and provide documentation. If there is no prior coverage, you may only enroll if you experience a relevant qualifying event, such as marriage, domestic partner registration or birth.
MAKING CHANGES DURING THE PLAN YEAR
Under certain circumstances, you may be permitted to make changes to your benefit elections during the plan year, such as additions, deletions and cancellations, depending on whether you experience an eligible qualifying event (Change in Status) as determined by the IRS Code, Section 125. If you experience a qualifying Change in Status, the election changes must be requested within 31 days from the qualifying event date (60 days for a newborn or adoption) and the change must be consistent with the type of event. Based on the event, you may add or delete dependents to your existing coverage; however, you cannot change your medical or dental plan to another plan type or carrier. Change in Status events include, but are not limited to:
- Marriage or divorce
- Registration or dissolution of Domestic Partnership
- Death of a dependent (60 days)
- Birth or adoption (60 days)
- Legal guardianship
- Change in a dependent’s eligibility
- Change in employment status for you or your dependents
- Change from part-time to full-time employment status or vice versa
- Going on unpaid leave:
- Family and Medical Leave and Job Protected Leave
- Authorized leave without pay
- Workers’ Compensation disability leave
- Military leave
When and how to request a Change In Status:
Contact the Employee Benefit Services Section at 954-357-6700 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
in advance of the event, but no later than 31 days from the date of the event.
Documentation supporting the Change In Status/Qualifying Event must be submitted with the Enrollment/Change Form. Requests made later than 31 days from the date of the event will not be approved (exception: newborn babies and adoptions; requests must be made within 60 days of the birth/placement for adoption).
Effective date of the change in coverage due to a Change in Status/Qualifying Event: Coverage becomes effective on the first of the month following the date the paperwork and documentation is received and approved by the Employee Benefit Services Section. (Exception: The only qualifying event changes that will be made retroactive are: birth*, adoption or foster care placement.)
*Your newborn child is not automatically enrolled by the County or group health plan. You must add your newborn dependent through the Employee Benefit Services Section within 60 days, even if your current coverage includes Employee and Children, or Employee and Family coverage.
Coverage ends on the last day of the month in which the Change in Status/Qualifying Event occurred in most situations. Supporting documentation is required and must be submitted to the Employee Benefit Services Section within 31 days of the Change in Status date.
Loss of other Group coverage midyear: You can enroll in a County health plan midyear if you have lost other group insurance coverage. Supporting documentation of the loss of coverage is required and must be submitted to the Employee Benefit Services Section within 31 days of the loss of coverage date.
If you experience a relevant Change in Status/Qualifying Event, it is your responsibility to notify the Employee Benefit Services Section within 31 days of the event. Beyond 31 days, the employee is responsible both legally and financially for any claims and/or expenses incurred as a result of any dependent(s) who continue to be enrolled who no longer meet the County’s eligibility requirements.
Open Enrollment is a period of time, determined by the County, during which you are allowed to make changes to your pretax benefits (health, dental, vision, and Flexible Spending Accounts (Health Savings Accounts contributions can be changed at any time during the year) and after-tax prepaid legal plan, personal income protection plans and life insurance, for the following plan year. Annual pretax elections are irrevocable unless experiencing a qualifying event. All benefit-eligible employees are required to reenroll each year during open enrollment. The County’s Open Enrollment for pretax and specified after-tax benefits is held annually during the last quarter of the calendar year to allow eligible employees to:
- enroll in or disenroll from health, dental, and/or vision
- enroll in prepaid legal coverage
- enroll in personal income protection plans
- enroll in or change life insurance coverage (subject to plan restrictions)
- change health or dental insurance plans
- enroll or remove dependents from health, dental or vision plans without a relevant Change in Status/ Qualifying Event
- start, stop or change deductions to a Section 125 Flexible Spending Account (Health Care or Dependent Day Care)
Note: If planning on retiring, the elections made during open enrollment, or through a change in status prior to retirement for health, dental and vision, will be the only plans available for retiree continuation of coverage. Retirees cannot elect or enroll in health, dental or vision coverage if not enrolled as an active employee at the time of retirement.
No other after-tax County benefits are subject to Open Enrollment restrictions. Other benefits can be elected or changed at any time during the year. Changes made during Open Enrollment go into effect the following January 1.
What should I do if my spouse/domestic partner's Open Enrollment is before/after my mine?
This situation is a “qualifying event.” It is highly recommended that you complete open enrollment with Broward County. Upon showing us proof of enrollment in another open enrollment plan within 31 days of the effective date of the new plan, we may allow you to make a change to your County enrollment. If you miss your 31 day opportunity, you will have to wait until another qualifying event or open enrollment occurs. To make the best decision, contact the Employee Benefit Services Section with your questions.