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Insurance Benefits

The university provides a benefits package that includes some programs fully paid by the employer, others partially paid by the employer, and others fully paid by the employee. That portion of the benefits package that includes state-paid programs, such as employee health and dental insurance, is administered by Central Management Services, an agency of the State of Illinois. The state health, dental, and life insurance benefits are available to employees hired at 50% time or more for a period of at least eight months. If, however, an employee is hired at 50% time or more and the contract is for less than eight months, due to fiscal constraints or grant restrictions, health, dental, and life benefits may be provided if it is the intention of the hiring department to continue the employment. In such a case, the department chair or director may write to Benefit Services requesting that benefits be provided. Such a letter must clearly document that continued employment is intended for at least eight months if performance is satisfactory and if funds are available.

Current employees are encouraged to make appointments to visit Benefit Services whenever they have questions or wish to discuss changes in their benefits package. For benefits provided through the State of Illinois, most changes in coverage can be made during the benefit choice period announced each spring by Department of Central Management Services. However, many changes may be made at other times. Information about changes in the benefits package is regularly communicated to employees.

As an employee, you should contact your Group Insurance Representative (Benefit Services) if:

  • You and/or your dependents experience a change of address
  • Your dependent loses eligibility
  • You or your dependent obtains other coverage
  • You go on a Leave of Absence or have time away from work
  • You experience a change in Medicare status
  • You get married or divorced
  • You have a baby or adopt a child
  • Your spouse's or dependent's employment status changes
  • you are uncertain whether or not a life-changing even needs to be reported
  • your payroll deductions are the incorrect amount for the coverages you have requested

Benefit Choice Period

The Benefit Choice Period is usually May 1 through May 31 for all members. Benefit elections made during the Benefit Choice Period are effective July 1. During this period, employees may add, delete, or re-enroll in many of our benefit plans.

Enrollments/changes include:

  • Change health plans
  • Add or drop dependent coverage
  • Increase or decrease member Optional Life insurance coverage
  • Add or drop Child Life, Spouse Life and/or AD&D insurance coverage
  • Enroll unrelated same-sex Domestic Partner
  • Elect to opt out of or waive health, dental and vision coverage
  • Re-enroll program if previously opted out or waived
  • Elect to participate or not participate in the dental plan
  • Enroll or re-enroll in the Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA) program

The current Benefit Choice Option booklet contains valuable information on group insurance plans and other programs administered by Central Management Services.

Life Insurance

The State of Illinois provides each eligible employee, at no cost, one unit of term insurance, a unit equaling the employee's base annual salary. The employee may elect additional coverage of up to 8 units of term life and up to 4 units of accidental death and dismemberment insurance. State term life insurance includes a provision allowing payment of up to half the policy's face value to a terminally ill employee whose life expectancy is 6 months or less. Spouse coverage of up to $10,000 and dependent child coverage of $10,000 is also available. The optional employee life insurance is portable upon termination of employment.  The plan is administered by Securian/Minnesota Life. 

Click here for further Life Insurance information.

Health Insurance

As employees of a public university in the State of Illinois, our benefits are managed by Central Management Services with the State of Illinois.  There are various insurance plans available ranging from HMO, OAP and PPO.  The cost for each of the plans is based upon the employee's annual salary and the number of dependents they are covering on their plan.  Prescription benefits are included in each of the health plans.

Click here for further Health Insurance information.

Dental Insurance

The Quality Care Dental Plan (QCDP) is a dental plan that offers a comprehensive range of benefits administered by Delta Dental of Illinois.  All members and enrolled dependents have the same dental benefits available under the QCDP regardless of the health plan selected.  Plan participants enrolled in the dental plan can choose any dental provider for services, however, plan participants may pay less out-of-pocket when they receive services from a network provider.

Click here for further Dental Insurance information.

Optional Life Insurance Benefits

University employees may also purchase university-sponsored term life insurance in units of $5,000, up to five times the employee's annual salary or $200,000, whichever is less. Also available is spouse coverage up to $200,000, child coverage up to $10,000, and individual or full family accidental death and dismemberment insurance.

Click here for further Optional Life Insurance information.


Vision Care Benefit is provided free to all eligible employees.  The Plan is administered by EyeMed Vision Care and provides a benefit for vision examinations, spectacle lenses, frames and contact lenses with co-payments when services are provided by EyeMed member doctors.  There is no premium cost to the employee or dependents covered under the group health plan.  The plan also covers annuitants and survivors. Eye exams and replacement lenses are covered once every 12 months from the last date the exam benefit was used.  Standard frames are available once every 24 months from the last date used.  Copayments are required.

Click here for further Vision Insurance information.

Long Term Disability

A long term disability plan provides financial protection for you by paying a portion of your income while you have a long period of disability. The amount you receive is based on the amount you earned before your disability began. In some cases you can receive disability payments even if you work while you are disabled.

Faculty members who are also members of SIU HealthCare are not allowed to enroll in long term disability coverage through the University.

Employees may enroll in the long term disability coverage program at the time of hire or during announced open enrollment periods.

Brochures and forms are available on the SIU-C HR website. You may also contact Benefit Services.

Click here for further Long Term Disability information.

Benefit Counseling

Benefit counseling is available to employees on a number of benefit-related topics throughout the year. Counseling sessions are particular encouraged when there is a change in the employee's personal status that may affect their benefits. For example, when an employee gets married, he/she may want to add their new spouse to their health and/or dental insurance plan. They may also need to make beneficiary changes to their life insurance or other benefits requiring a beneficiary. Counseling sessions may be scheduled by contacting a Benefit Services staff member.

Examples of life changes that may require benefit counseling:

  • Beneficiary change
  • Birth or adoption of a child
  • Dependent change
  • Marital status/name change
  • Retirement

Benefit counseling is also available for:

  • Deferred compensation (Tax Code 457)
  • Tax-deferred annuities (Tax Code 403[b])

Benefit Services staff are also available for counseling sessions during Benefit Choice Period each year to help explain changes in insurance plans or new programs available.

For detailed information on all insurance benefits, please visit the State Benefit Choice website. Once there, click on “State Employee Insurance and Benefit Programs”.

Insurance Benefits Frequently Asked Questions