UC Berkeley News


Open enrollment for 2007 benefits now underway

| 01 November 2006

Open-enrollment presentations for active faculty and staff
Berkeley faculty and staff are invited to attend a presentation on UC benefit plans and this year's open enrollment, provided by the Office of Human Resources' benefits office. Among the topics to be covered are:

. 2007 medical plans
. HCRA and DepCare plans and the new HCRA spending card
. How to take open-enrollment actions

The same presentation will be offered four times. Faculty and staff may attend any session that they wish; family members are also welcome. All presentations are in 150 University Hall on the following dates:

Wednesday, Nov. 8, 8:30 to 9:30 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 8, 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 16, 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 16, 3:30 to 4:30 pm

Note: These workshops are for actively employed faculty and staff; separate workshops will be offered for retirees.
Open enrollment for UC health and other benefits plans runs from Nov. 1 to Nov. 21. By visiting the At Your Service website (atyourservice.ucop.edu) and selecting the "Open Enrollment 2007" icon, you'll be able to review your current plan enrollments; read about plan benefits, services, and changes for 2007; see what the medical-plan rates for 2007 will be; and use some helpful planning tools.

In 2007 there will be very few changes to UC benefits plans, but medical premiums are increasing more significantly than in the past several years. Both employees and UC will share in the cost increases. Depending on your pay band, medical plan, and family members covered, monthly premiums will increase anywhere from $2 per month to $85 per month.

Because UC deducts medical premiums on a pre-tax basis, the effect of the premium increase on your paycheck will be reduced 25 to 40 percent, depending on your tax bracket. Moreover, enrollment in the Health Care Reimbursement Account Program (HCRA) may also further reduce or offset the impact of premium increases. Additional information is available online at atyourservice.ucop.edu/open_enrollment/employees/cal/shps_info.

As in the past, UC employee premiums are based on salary bands to help protect employees in the lower pay ranges and those with children from the impact of premium increases. UC remains committed to offering plan choices and high-quality health care - an important part of your total compensation.

During open enrollment you can take the following actions:

. Change to a different medical plan.
. Change to a different dental plan (California residents only).
. Enroll eligible family members in your health plans.
. Enroll or re-enroll in the Health Care Reimbursement Account (HCRA) and/or Dependent Care Reimbursement Account (DepCare). Even if you are currently enrolled in these plans, you must re-enroll to participate in 2007.
. Opt out of your medical, dental, or vision plan, or enroll in a new plan if you previously opted out.
. Change participation in the Tax Savings on Insurance Premiums (TIP) program (enrollment is automatic unless you opt out).
. With the exception of HCRA and DepCare, you don't need to do anything if you are satisfied with your current enrollments and have no plan changes to make.
. The ARAG Legal Plan is not open for new enrollments this year; however, existing members can de-enroll a family member or cancel the plan. Accidental Death and Dismemberment (AD&D) insurance is open for paper enrollment year-round.

If you make any changes during open enrollment, your new coverage will be effective Jan. 1, 2007.