SMU’s 2013 Open Enrollment period runs Oct. 14-31

SMU Benefits U logoSMU’s 2013 Open Enrollment period begins Sunday, Oct. 14 and ends Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012. The Open Enrollment period is the only opportunity for SMU employees to make changes to benefits elections for the coming year, except for qualified life event changes.

For 2013, there are several Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) required changes that will affect you:

Women’s Preventive Health Services Covered at 100%
SMU will provide female plan participants with expanded access to recommended in-network preventive services, including contraceptives, without cost sharing.

Healthcare FSA Contribution Limit of $2,500
If you contribute to the Healthcare Flexible Spending Account (FSA), the maximum amount the IRS will allow you to contribute will be reduced from $5,000 to $2,500. This change in the law does not impact the Dependent Care FSA; you can still contribute up to $5,000 to this account.

Medicare Tax Increase – Highly Compensated Employees
Currently, the Medicare tax is 2.9%, with 1.45% withheld from the paycheck and the other 1.45% paid by SMU. Beginning Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2013, an extra 0.9% Medicare tax will be charged as follows:

  • For unmarried people, the extra 0.9% will be charged on wages above $200,000.
  • For married-filing-jointly couples, the extra 0.9% will be charged on combined wages above $250,000.
  • For those who are married filing separately, the extra 0.9% will be charged on wages above $125,000.

Medical premium increases for 2013 are due to the University’s medical claims experience and new requirements under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA). Premium increases will vary depending on which SMU Health & Wellness Plan you’re currently enrolled in and on what plan you choose next year. Premiums will remain the same for dental and vision coverage.

SMU will continue to offer the $1,000, $2,000, and $2,500 deductible options. In addition, the University is adding a fourth coverage option in 2013 – a $5,000 deductible option – in order to provide greater coverage choice. In some cases, the premium savings from switching to a higher deductible plan option can offset the higher deductible, or a large portion of it.

Find more information in the 2013 Benefits Guide, available at HR’s Benefits U page

For 2013 open enrollment, you must take action for the following conditions:

  • You want to make changes to your current coverage, including adding or dropping dependents.
  • You want to participate in one or both of the Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) in 2013. All faculty and staff members must reconfirm their participation in an FSA even if they participated in an FSA in 2012.
  • You want to participate in the Health Savings Account (HSA) in 2013. All faculty and staff members must reconfirm their participation in the HSA even if they participated in the HSA in 2012.

SMU uses a secure online open-enrollment application available through Access.SMU. To use the application:

  • Enter your Access.SMU user ID and password as you normally would to review your pay statement.
  • Click Benefits in the Employee Self-Service navigation on the right, then choose Benefits Enrollment to access your personalized Open Enrollment record.
  • Be sure to read all instructions carefully before making elections for 2013.

More information on vendors and plan changes will be available at SMU’s 2012 Human Resources Fair, 10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 23 in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballrooms. Vendor representatives will be on hand to answer questions about your options.

The Department of Human Resources has scheduled a series of sessions designed to help faculty and staff members make their medical-plan decisions for 2013. RSVP online for the session of your choice, or contact the Department of Human Resources, 214-768-3311.

Consult SMU’s 2013 Benefits Guide on the web

About Kathleen Tibbetts

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