If your benefit question is not answered below, please contact a member of our customer service team at (570) 422-3422 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. We are here to help you!
Benefits - Health Benefits
- How do I know what benefits I'm enrolled in?You can log into the Employee Self Service Portal (ESS), click on the Benefits tab and select Benefit Participation Overview
- How do I know what benefits are available to me?You can view the Summary of Benefits from the State System website.
- How do I order new Health Insurance ID Cards?Depending on your Insurance:
- Highmark Blue Shield members:
You can print a temporary Medical ID card from the Highmark Blue Shield Website. If you have not registered before, you will need to register. If you have already registered, enter your Login ID and Password and click on LOGIN.
- Pennsylvania Employee Benefit Trust Fund (PEBTF): under Active members tab, select Open Enrollment Information, and then Health Plan Information. Select your plan type and log-in as member or register to order ID cards OR call the Customer Service of the plan.
- Pennsylvania Employee Benefit Trust Fund (PEBTF) Dental Benefits through United Concordia
- Pennsylvania Employee Benefit Trust Fund (PEBTF) Vision Benefits
- Pennsylvania Employee Benefit Trust Fund (PEBTF) Prescription through CVS Caremark
- State System Dental Benefits through United Concordia - printable ID card can be printed on-line by logging in as member
- SSHE: Vision Benefits through National Vision Administrators - printable ID card available on-line via Subscriber log-in. Cards can also be ordered on-line
- Faculty - Contact local APSCUF Office for direction- Toni Heller ext. 3278
- Highmark Blue Shield members:
- Where can I find current benefits forms?You can get current forms for benefits through the State System website by selecting the appropriate unit and "Forms" or applicable benefit tab.
- Where can I find answers regarding my medical coverage?Please check the State System website under the appropriate group for links to information on your medical coverage.
- When is Open Enrollment?
There are various dates for Open Enrollments, here is a list:
- Pennsylvania Employee Benefit Trust Fund (PEBTF) health benefits (AFSCME and SCUPA employees) Open Enrollment is usually late October for a January 1 effective date.
- State System health benefits (APSCUF, Management, Coaches & SPFPA employees) Open Enrollment is usually late April to early May with a July 1 effective date.
- Flexible Spending Accounts Open Enrollment is usually early November with a January 1 effective date.
- I just had a baby, what do I need to do to enroll him/her onto my benefits?You will need to complete the applicable medical enrollment/change form within 60 days of the life status change. You will also need to provide documentation, such as a birth certificate and social security card within those 60 days. Life event information can be found on the State System website.
- Who is eligible to participate in Healthy U?Healthy U is available to covered managers, faculty, non-faculty coaches, police and security personnel and their spouses/same-sex domestic partners who are enrolled in the State System of Higher Education Group Health Program’s PPO or Indemnity healthy plans.
- How does Healthy U work?Healthy U website for more information.
Benefits - Life Insurance & Long-Term Disability
- If I don’t sign up for Long Term Disability, Voluntary Life insurance or Accidental
Death and Dismemberment when I am first hired, when can I join?
You can join at any time for Life Insurance and Long Term Disability, but after 31 days of employment, you will be required to complete an evidence of insurability form below and return it to HR. HR will then forward your application/form to CIGNA for review and determination. You are not able to enroll in Accidental death and dismemberment after 30 days from the date of employment.
- How can I change my beneficiaries on my life insurance?To update your beneficiaries for our group life insurance program with MetLife, you would log into their website and use “Commonwealth of Pennsylvania or Commonwealth of PA” as your employer. To update your beneficiaries through our voluntary group life and personal accident insurance program, CIGNA, you would complete this form: Voluntary Group Life Insurance, found on the HR website under forms and return it to HR.
Benefits - Retirement
- How do I contribute more to my retirement?Your retirement contribution is a fixed amount, if you want to supplement your retirement; there are Voluntary Supplemental Retirement Plans. Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education offers two additional options for retirement plans that are entirely optional to employees. The State System participates in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania's Deferred Compensation Plan currently administered through Empower Retirement. This program allows employees to contribute to a long-term savings plan on a pre-tax basis up to amounts allowed by the IRS. The other option open to State System employees is the Tax Sheltered Annuity (TSA) program. The TSA program is a supplemental retirement savings plan under Section 403(b) of the Internal Revenue Code. This voluntary program allows employees to contribute, on a pre-tax basis, a portion of your salary for retirement savings.
- How do I open a Voluntary Tax Shelter Annuity (TSA)?You must register via the retirement@work website to access your account or set up a new account.
- How much may I contribute to my Alternative Retirement Plan (ARP)?Employees are required to contribute 5% of their covered salary and may not contribute any additional amount.
- How much will the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education contribute to my Alternative
Retirement Plan (ARP)?Currently the employer contribution is 9.29% of your covered salary. The rate is established by the legislature and subject to revision.
- How frequently may I change investment fund allocations?Allocation of investment funds within a company's available fund options may be changed in accordance with the company's guidelines.
- Can I select more than one Alternative Retirement Plan (ARP) company and thereby "split"
my contributions?Yes. Contributions to the Alternative Retirement Plan (ARP) may be split between or among any of the participating companies. Employee and employer retirement contributions are combined and then allocated based upon the chosen percentages. The minimum amount that may be contributed to a single company is 1%.
- Can I switch between PSERS, SERS and the Alternative Retirement Plan (ARP)?No. Enrollment in retirement plan is a one-time, irrevocable election.
- How long do I have to elect my retirement plan?Employees have 30 days from the date of hire or initial retirement plan eligibility to select a retirement plan. If an election is not made within 30 days, the default plan is State Employees Retirement System. In addition, failure to elect a retirement plan by the close of the 1st pay period from the date of hire, will result in double deductions from your paycheck.
- Where can I receive more information regarding retirement plan options?Information including links to all retirement plans can be found on the State System website.
- Is the employee-paid portion of my retirement contribution made before tax?Yes, your contributions to the contribution plans are pre-tax deductions.
- Is there a deferred compensation plan option?Yes, You must enroll directly with the vendor Empower Retirement by contacting Justen Yatko at (866) 737-7457 ext.622226 or email Justen.email@example.com
Benefits - Tuition Waiver
- What are the tuition waiver benefits, and how do I apply for them?Information regarding tuition waiver as well as applicable forms by unit can be found on the Forms webpage on the HR website.
Benefits - Workers Compensation
- What do I do if get hurt at work?
All work-related accidents must be immediately reported to your supervisor who will coordinate with HR. If you will be seeking medical treatment (other than emergency care), you should use a panel physician to guarantee coverage under Workers' Compensation. You and your supervisor together must fill out an Accident/Incident Report form and return it to HR.
Benefits - State Employee's Assistance Program (SEAP)
- How can I learn about State Employee's Assistance Program (SEAP)?You can get information about SEAP from the link located on the Human Resources page under benefits.
- Does State Employee's Assistance Program (SEAP) cost anything?SEAP provides up to four free sessions with a SEAP counselor per person for each issue or problem, and the benefit renews each calendar year. However, you must call SEAP to have all visits pre-approved to ensure coverage under your benefit plan.
- How do I get started with State Employee's Assistance Program (SEAP)?You can reach State Employee's Assistance Program (SEAP) 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, toll free at: (800) 692-7459.
Benefits - Leave and Long Term Disability
- If I’m out sick do I need a doctor’s note?If you are out sick for three or more consecutive days, a doctor’s note is required to return to work.
- What if I need to take an extended leave of absence?Review your Collective Bargaining Agreement if you are part of a unit for the different types of leave available to you. You can also consult with HR on what documentation is needed.
- What if I am placed on a leave of absence without pay?You have been placed on a leave without pay, which may be due to military, sick, parental, cyclical, or work related leave or an approved absence. Since you are not receiving a pay, the premiums that would normally be deducted from your paycheck must be paid.
- Can I set up a payment plan?No. All premiums are due by the due date listed on the invoice.
- How do I know what my premiums are?Our billing only includes State System Medical and Voluntary Insurances (ADD, VGLlP, LTD). State System Medical is applicable to APSCUF, Coaches, SPFPA, or OPEIU unions and non-represented employees. All premium amounts are listed on your pay statement. An electronic copy of your most recent pay statement can be found on ESS (portal.passhe.edu). If you are still unsure of your premiums amount you may contact your university benefit coordinator.
- Why is my PEBTF Medical coverage not showing on my bill?If you are an AFSCME or SCUPA employee, your medical benefits are with the PEBTF. While on a leave without pay, the PEBTF will bill you for your medical premiums.
- When can I expect to see a bill from the PEBTF for Medical coverage?The Pennsylvania Employees Benefit Trust Fund (PEBTF) bills at the beginning of each month. You can expect to see a bill shortly after the beginning of each month after your leave without pay begins. To make a payment, you can go to Pennsylvania Employees Benefit Trust Fund (PEBTF) and select “Make a Payment” in the upper right corner of the site.
- If I have a question regarding my PEBTF premiums, who can I contact?The Pennsylvania Employees Benefit Trust Fund (PEBTF) can be contacted at (800) 522-7279, Option 3 and then Option 2, for employees on leave without pay OR https://www.pebtf.org and navigate to "make a payment" in the upper right corner of the site.
- How do I apply for Long Term Disability (LTD)?Instructions on how to report a disability claim through CIGNA
- What should I do if I apply for Long Term Disability (LTD)?If you are applying for long term disability and have been on a leave of absence, please notify us immediately. Premiums must be paid up to date for approval of your disability. Failure to pay these premiums may result in your Long Term Disability (LTD) benefit being denied. If you are approved for LTD benefits, please notify your benefit coordinator so we can stop your premium deductions.
- When will my missed premiums be deducted?If you do not receive a bill, any missed premiums will be deducted from your first pay upon return from your leave of absence without pay. If you do not return, missed premiums will be taken from any wages you receive and/or you will be sent an invoice.
- What if I separate during my leave of absence?If you separate before returning from your leave of absence, any outstanding premiums will be automatically deducted from any final wages you may receive. If you receive no wages, a bill will be sent to you and you will owe the premiums missed while on your active leave of absence. If you do not pay these premiums, coverage will be cancelled retroactive and you will be responsible for any claims incurred during that time period. You will also not be offered the option to convert any of your group policies.
- How much time will I have to pay my bill?You have 30 days to pay for your missed premiums. Please note premiums will accrue every two weeks as biweekly checks are missed.
- If I have any other questions, who can I contact?If your question relates to leave, please contact your university benefits coordinator. If your question relates to billing, please contact Julie Cramer at (717) 720-4108 or firstname.lastname@example.org