*Update: The nonsupervisory merit open change period will now open on Monday, Oct. 21, at 8 a.m. and close at 5 p.m. Nov. 19.
Nonsupervisory merit employees will have an opportunity to review and change their benefits during the annual open change period, Oct. 18 to Nov. 18. The cost of benefits to employees for 2014 is essentially the same as 2013, with only two increases.
Health and dental coverage for nonsupervisory merit employees will remain the same for 2014. The cost of those benefits also will be similar to 2013, with a slight increase (less than $24) for both the Iowa Select and Program 3 Plus family coverage. The Iowa Select family coverage will increase to $270.64 monthly; the Program 3 Plus family coverage will increase to $276.42 a month. Premiums for Blue Access and Blue Advantage family plans will not change (there still is no cost to employees). Employees also continue to pay no premiums for employee-only coverage.
Vision coverage costs a little more
Rates for Avesis vision coverage also are increasing slightly. The 2014 monthly costs are:
- Employee - $7.26 (an increase of $0.28)
- Employee and spouse - $13.76 (an increase of $0.53)
- Employee and child - $14.98 (an increase of $0.56)
- Employee and family - $19.28 (an increase of $0.73)
Voluntary life coverage costs a little less
Monthly premiums for voluntary life insurance are decreasing slightly in 2014, by about $0.04 per $1,000 in coverage. The decrease applies to all age groups.
Dental enrollment is open
Nonsupervisory merit employees have the option to enroll themselves or add spouses and dependent children (including those up to age 26) to their dental plans this year, which is not an annual occurrence.
How to make changes to your benefits
Nonsupervisory merit employees may alter their medical, dental, flexible spending and Avesis coverage online through AccessPlus. Enrolling in or increasing employer-sponsored basic or voluntary life insurance will require paper forms. If you prefer to make all your changes on paper, contact university human resources (UHR) at 4-4800.
If you wish to make no changes to your benefits, you do not need to complete any forms. However, the UHR staff asks that you look through your benefits statements to confirm your dependents' information.
The ISU Plan open change period for faculty, professional and scientific, and supervisory merit employees is Nov. 1-22. Look for more details about the ISU Plan open change period in next week's Inside Iowa State.
Employees may continue to insure children up to age 26 on their medical, dental and Avesis vision plans for 2014. To qualify, children must be under age 26 on Jan. 1, 2014. Children may be covered even if they are married or have a job with health care benefits. If children already have benefits, the ISU coverage would supplement their primary health plans.
If children turn 26 in 2013, coverage must end Dec. 31, 2013. However, if children are unmarried and enroll as full-time students during the year, they can remain on their parents' ISU health or dental plans until they either get married or stop being full-time students. There may be tax implications for employees who insure students over age 26.
UHR is hosting an interactive webcast for nonsupervisory merit employees Nov. 11 from 9 to 10 a.m. To participate, log on to https://connect.extension.iastate.edu/benefits. At the login page, enter your name under the "Enter as a Guest" heading, then click "Enter Room." A recording of the broadcast also will be available on the UHR website.