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Benefits

Self-pay: Continue your insurance

When on unpaid leave or laid off from your job at UW, you can continue your medical, dental, and life insurance by paying the full monthly premium.

Eligibility

You may continue your medical, dental, and life insurance coverage on a self-paid basis provided that you are on an approved leave of absence from a PEBB insurance-eligible position and that the leave is no longer than 24 months, the maximum period allowed by the UW and most labor agreements.

If you do not continue your life insurance on a self-paid basis, you may not be automatically reinstated when you return to work. Evidence of Insurability may be required before reinstatement.

Enroll

To continue your coverage through self-pay:

  1. Fill out the Leave Without Pay Election (PDF) form
  2. Mail the completed form to the Health Care Authority (address listed on the form)

Cost

You choose what coverage you want to continue through self-pay. Coverage is offered by the state Public Employees Benefits Board (PEBB):

Long-term disability

Long-term disability (LTD) insurance is typically not in force while you’re on an unpaid leave of absence.

However, if you are on an approved educational leave without pay, you can elect to continue your long-term disability (LTD) insurance on a self-paid basis. When your educational leave is partially paid, deductions are taken from your salary, and you can elect to self-pay the difference. Contact Benefits if you’d like to self-pay the difference.

If you’re on unpaid leave that’s not approved as educational, you can’t self-pay to continue LTD insurance, but you can reinstate coverage by applying within 10 days of returning from your leave without pay.

FMLA leave

If your leave is fully or partially covered by the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), some of your coverages may not require that you self-pay for insurance coverage.

Contact your HR Consultant if you have questions about whether a leave may be covered by the FMLA. If you’re faculty or a librarian, contact Academic Human Resources.

If you receive written notification that a leave of absence without pay is covered by FMLA, you should email Benefits for information about benefits eligibility under FMLA.

Active military duty leave

If you are called to active duty military service, special rules apply for continuation of your medical, dental, life and long-term disability insurance benefits. To ensure that you receive coverage while on leave, send Benefits the departmental letter documenting your military leave of absence. Contact Benefits if you have questions.

If you don’t continue your coverage

If you choose not to continue your benefits on a self-paid basis:

  • Your medical and dental insurance will end as of the last day of the month in which you earned at least eight hours’ pay. Your medical and dental insurance will not be reinstated until the first day of the month in which you are in pay status.
  • Your life insurance will end as of the last day of the month in which the full monthly premium was paid. On return from leave or layoff, no optional coverage is reinstated unless applied for and approved by the insurance company.
  • Your long-term disability (LTD) insurance will end as of the last day in pay status and will be reinstated on return as long as the enrollment form is completed within ten (10) days of return from leave. Only those employees on an approved educational leave may continue LTD insurance on a self-pay basis.

If you allow your optional (employee-paid) life insurance to lapse and, if on approved education leave, your LTD insurance lapses, you must re-apply for coverage upon your return, providing proof of good health to the insurance company.