Nov. 20, 1997
Vol. 17, No. 5

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    Last chance: Open enrollment ends Nov. 24

    Time is running out for employees who want to enroll for 1998 benefits. The telephone enrollment system closes on Monday, Nov. 24.

    Employees who want to make changes to their benefits, enroll in a health- or dependent-care flexible spending account, or change or update their dependent information, must enroll by phone by midnight Monday, Nov. 24. Employees who do not enroll by then will continue their current levels of coverage at 1998 rates for health, dental, life insurance, long-term disability and personal accident insurance. Employees who wish to sign up for flexible spending accounts in 1998 must call the telephone enrollment system; if they do not, they will not be able to contribute to a flexible spending account in 1998, regardless of their 1997 elections.

    "Every benefits-eligible employee should have received an Open Enrollment packet by now," said Lele Paulson, Director of Benefits. "This packet contains the information each employee needs to use the telephone enrollment system. Any employee who has not received his or her packet by now should contact the Benefits Office immediately." Employees may contact the Benefits Office by phone at 702-9634, or by e-mail at benefits@uchicago.edu.

    In early December, each employee will receive a Confirmation Statement showing their phone elections or confirming the continuation of their current coverage for 1998. Employees should review their Confirmation Statements carefully to ensure that their benefit coverage is correct.

    Anyone who enrolls in a new HMO, elects HMO coverage for the first time, or signs up for the First Commonwealth dental plan will receive enrollment forms with his or her Confirmation Statement. The health and dental enrollments forms must be completed and mailed directly to the providers before the coverage will take effect. Similarly, employees who elected to increase their long-term disability or life insurance coverage will receive a Statement of Health form that must be completed, returned to the Benefits Office, and approved by TIAA before the increased coverage will take effect.