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Swartzbaugh-Farber & Associates, Inc.: Are We Broke? Swartzbaugh-Farber & Associates, Inc.: Life Changes... What to Share

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As employees we often keep our private life separate from our work life. At times, it is necessary to let your Human Resources Department know what is going on at home. Your benefits may be impacted by a turn of events in your life. It is important to give timely notice to your HR Representative about any changes.
 

For the most part, when you enroll in coverage you are locked into that decision until your next renewal. There are certain instances, known as qualifying events, which allow for a change in your enrollment status.

This means you are eligible to change who is enrolled in your plan without waiting for the next annual enrollment period. The federally recognized qualifying events are marriage, birth/adoption, death, divorce or loss of other coverage, and in certain instances, eligibility under another plan. If you experience any of these life changes, you need to contact your employer as the window to make changes to your plan is very small. Often you will only have 31 days following the event.


There are other life changes that may influence your enrollment status. For instance, the age of your children has a bearing on what coverage they are eligible for. Be familiar with the dependent age limits of your plans. Notify your employer when your child ages out of a plan. Other changes in your child’s life may also influence their eligibility. If your child leaves or returns to school, studies abroad or gets married, there could be an impact on their coverage through your employer.


Anytime you move you should alert your employer of your new address. All of your contact information will need to be updated. Your insurance networks may also need to be updated if you move far enough away. You will need to update your employment forms if your tax status changes. This may also impact your 401(K) or IRA deferrals.


If you are going through a divorce or separation tell your employer. You may want to update your beneficiaries and there are specific procedures you need to follow to change your enrollment. Your employer will also have to be notified about any child support orders.


These are private life events but they do impact your benefits at work. To protect yourself you need to communicate changes. If you are uncomfortable talking to your employer, ask if you can call your company’s insurance broker yourself. There are many resources out there to help you navigate life changes. All you have to do is ask!

 

For more information, please contact your trusted advisor
at Swartzbaugh-Farber, Client Centered – Client Advocates™

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