What is considered a family status change/qualifying event?
A family status change/qualifying event is an IRS rule that allows an employee to change benefit elections when one of the following qualifying events occurs:
  • Marriage or Divorce
  • Death of spouse/child
  • Birth, adoption, or gaining legal guardianship of a child
  • Changes to spouse employment resulting in the loss/gain of employer provided insurance coverage.
  • Becoming eligible/ineligible for Medicare or Medicaid
  • Change in eligibility status of a dependent
  • Significant reduction in employment hours/assignment
  • Court order/decree for coverage of children

Is there a deadline to notify the Payroll/Benefits Department?

If a qualifying event above occurs, you must notify the Payroll/Benefits Department within 30 days from the date the family status change occurred. Failure to notify the Payroll/Benefits Department may result in changes being disallowed until the next open enrollment period.
Are there forms that need to be completed?
No, there are no forms to complete. However, an employee MUST provide written verification of the family status change and notify the benefits office of which plans have a change and for whom. Examples of written verification:
  • Certificate of Creditable Coverage from the previous health insurance company for any loss of insurance
  • Written verification from spouse's employer/benefits department indicating hire date or termination date and effective date of insurance change
  • Divorce - copy of decree
  • Marriage - copy of marriage license
  • Legal adoption - copy of adoption/court papers