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Benefits Open Enrollment, November 1-30, 2012

Here is this year's benefits information for 2013, which has also been mailed (through campus mail) to all Vassar employees. Instructions for Banner Online Open Enrollment was included in the mailing, and will be emailed to all employees.

Vassar College Benefits Open Enrollment
November 1-30, 2012

Welcome to Open Enrollment for Benefits! This is your opportunity to review your current benefits and select new coverage. We strongly encourage you to attend this year’s Benefits Fair, today, November 1, 2012, 9am to 4pm, in the Villard Room, to meet with representatives for all benefits.

Open Enrollment Basics

How to Get Information on Your Benefits for 2013: Find full information on all benefits is available in the Benefits and Open Enrollment section of the Human Resources website. For face-to-face assistance, visit the Benefits Fair and talk with the Benefits staff and plan representatives.

Online Open Enrollment: As last year, use Ask Banner / Banner Online to complete Open Enrollment. If you want assistance in person, come to the Benefits Fair, where HR staff can help you through the Banner Open Enrollment process.

Deadlines: Elect your 2013 benefits online by November 30, 2012. In order to comply with IRS plan year election deadlines, we cannot accept Flex Spending Account elections after November 30, 2012.

Benefits News for 2013

Health Insurance: To minimize your paycheck cost increase for health insurance, we have changed co-pays on both health plans. Office visit co-pays have increased by $5, and brand-name drug costs are now somewhat higher. We have prepared a Health Insurance Comparison Chart so you can compare the Empire PPO and EPO plans (PDF). The 2013 rates are there, too, and will also appear when you complete Open Enrollment online and select “Calculate Costs.”

Flex Spending Accounts: The Health Care Reform Act now limits medical flex spending accounts to $2,500 per year. The child-care flex spending account limit remains $5,000 per year. Please also note the absolute deadline of November 30, 2012 for medical and dependent care flex elections.

NEW: Roth Option for your SRA: Your regular SRA contributions are Federal and state tax-free, and you pay taxes in retirement on your withdrawals from the account. Roth SRA contributions are taxed now, and withdrawals in retirement are tax-free. You will see Fidelity and TIAA-CREF Roth SRA options under “retirement plans” in your Banner Open Enrollment choices. More information on the Roth is available, and you can discuss the Roth with Benefits and retirement plan representatives at the Benefits Fair.

SRA Limits: For 2013, the IRS has raised the base annual SRA contribution limit to $17,500, with the over-age-50 catch-up addition remaining $5,500. Therefore, next year’s SRA limits are $17,500 if you will be under 50 in 2013, and $23,000 if you will be 50 or over.

These are just a few of the benefits available to you. Come to the Benefits Fair and check online for full information on the above as well as:

  • Dental Insurance
  • Life Insurance
  • Legal and Financial Counseling through your Employee Assistance Program (EAP)

Leslie Power
Manager, Benefits Programs