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Work and Life Events

When Changes Affect Your Employment or Benefits

Whether it's marriage, the birth of a new baby, adoption or retirement ... life involves change. Often, life events can affect the benefits you carry at your job. Sometimes, certain changes must be reported to Human Resources, especially to assure timely benefits plan coverage or accurate paycheck information.  The events listed below offer things to consider, along with resources for more information.

Where to Call:

Refer to this convenient general listing of "Where to Call" for contacting retirement plan carriers, health insurance plans, state agencies, and much more.

Adoption / Legal Guardianship

Job Change

Birth of Baby

Marriage

Coping with Changes

Moving

College

Name Change

Death

Retirement

Disability/Illness

Health Insurance in Retirement

Divorce

Pension Estimates and Options

Domestic Partner

Leaving University Employment

Retirement Planning

Promotion or Other Job Change

Turning 65

 Voluntary Separation Program

   

BALANCING WORK, HOME AND LIFE

The State of New York has built a comprehensive network of resources that may be used to address life issues that occur during your career with New York State.  

Life Planning: Get the tools to make decisions and develop strategies that deal with turning points in your life, such as retirement, midlife, or parenthood.

Addressing Personal Concerns: Find the services that can help you get over life's hurdles, including personalized and confidential assistance.

NYS Work Life Services Brochure

NYS Worksite Child Care Centers

Resources for Families: Welcome Letter

Resources for Families: Family Leave

Go to the New York State Balance site and follow these instructions.  Or, call (866) 320-4760.


EMPLOYEE ASSISTANCE PROGRAM

The New York State Employee Assistance Program is a confidential assessment and referral service for NYS employees and their family members who need assistance with personal concerns that may be affecting their work performance or overall well-being.

Binghamton University EAP: http://www2.binghamton.edu/eap/
Binghamton University has a local EAP office: 777-6655, located in Chenango Champlain Collegiate Center (C4, room 115) and Library South Ground, room 673/675 

Statewide EAP: http://www.worklife.state.ny.us/eap/resources.asp or 1-800-822-0244
E-mail:

Self-Help Resources
Alcohol and Drug Issues, Budgeting/Finance, Child Care/Parenting, Domestic Violence Services, Education, Eldercare/Disability, Health, Mental Health, Gambling Problems

Domestic Violence Services

NYS Coalition Against Domestic Violence: http://www.nyscadv.org/
Numerous resource links including county programs, safety plans, DV handbook and much more.
NYS Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence: http://www.opdv.state.ny.us/
This site contains information about domestic violence and various referral sources including hotlines and NYS organizations.

TAXES

Almost any life or work event may affect your tax status, eligibility, deductions or other options. Check with the latest IRS publications for guidelines: http://www.irs.gov/individuals/article/0,,id=121557,00.html

NYS Governor's Office of Employee Relations

Questions about my job:
GOER provides access to the negotiated agreements between the State and its public employee unions, and provides additional employee relations resources.

 

 

 

This table contains considerations for work/life events and links to more detailed information.
Family/Personal EventsConsiderations

Adoption / Legal Guardianship

Adding your new dependent to health insurance, dental and vision plans.  Change requests must be reported to Human Resources, Employee Benefits on a timely basis to avoid waiting periods and non-coverage of medical bills.

Updating beneficiary forms for life insurance, retirement systems, or other plans.

New or increased eligibility for NYS Flexible Spending Plans, to help with out-of-pocket medical expenses and/or dependent care expenses. http://www.flexspend.state.ny.us/

New York State College Savings Plan (529), contact http://nysaves.uii.upromise.com

Change in tax status or withholding (see above, TAXES).

Family and medical leave information (FLMA) http://www.dol.gov/esa/whd/fmla

 

Birth of Baby

Changing from individual to family health plan; adding your new dependent to your health insurance, dental and vision plans; updating your beneficiary forms for life insurance, retirement system, or other plans; flexible spending accounts; college savings plans.

Health insurance change requests must be reported to Human Resources, Employee Benefits on a timely basis in order to avoid waiting periods and non-coverage of medical bills. If you have an HMO, also contact the insurance carrier for an additional enrollment form.

Provide documents to Employee Benefits in order to add a new dependent to your health insurance, vision and/or dental plans.
You may have new or increased eligibility for NYS Flexible Spending Plans, to help with out-of-pocket medical expenses and/or dependent care expenses. www.flexspend.state.ny.us
1-800-358-7202

To start a NYS College Savings Plan, contact http://nysaves.uii.upromise.com
1-800-420-8580

To change your tax status, contact Human Resources, Payroll.
For family and medical leave information (FLMA), contact Human Resources. FLMA information described here: http://www.dol.gov/esa/whd/fmla

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Coping with Changes


Please see the local and New York State Employee Assistance Program (EAP) information above.

 

 

College

Dependent children can be covered under your health insurance, dental and vision plans up to age 25, as long as they are a full-time student. Coverage is void during times when they are not full-time students (after age 19). Proof of student status (typically provided by their college's Registrar office) is required for any changes to your insurance plans. Coverage may be provided for up to 3 months after the month in which they complete requirements for graduation; you must request this extension in coverage. You may also request COBRA information to continue coverage for a newly ineligible dependent. Again, you must request COBRA coverage if needed. Contact Human Resources, Employee Benefits for changes in status.

For details on student status, go to the NYS Dept. of Civil Service web site; select your bargaining unit, for example UUP, CSEA, etc. http://www.cs.state.ny.us/ebd/ebdonlinecenter/newgib/uup/03who.cfm?section=hi&group=uup

NYS College Savings Plan, contact http://nysaves.uii.upromise.com
1-800-420-8580

Contact your union for information on scholarships for family members.

For employees, there are tuition benefits programs available, depending upon your union affiliation/bargaining unit, CSEA Partnership, M/C Tuition Reimbursement, PEF's Public Service Workshop Programs, and more, described on the NYS Governor's Office of Employee Relations site.
http://www.goer.state.ny.us/train/tuition/index.html

http://www2.binghamton.edu/human-resources/employee-benefits/tuition-assistance.html

At Binghamton University, the Space Available and Tuition Waiver programs are also available. Contact Human Resources, Employee Benefits.

 

Death


When an employee dies, or an employee's family member dies, Human Resources, Employee Benefits will provide a summary of important information for the family contact, including retirement system and health insurance options. Please call Employee Benefits for assistance.

In the event that an employee passes away, New York State procedures require that Direct Deposit be inactivated.  Paychecks and any other NYS employer refunds/payments will be re-processed in the name of the next of kin. Human Resources will contact the family to provide the Affidavit form for next-of-kin.

Other potential actions to consider: switching from a family to individual health insurance plan; dependent survivor benefits; life insurance payments; changing your tax withholding; updating beneficiary forms for retirement plans, insurance policies and other assets.

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Disability/Illness

Sick leave accruals are used during times of illness or disability; as employees of the State of New York, we are not eligible for the NYS short-term disability program. In cases where there are not enough accruals to cover the period of your illness or disability, contact Human Resources for options, including the leave donation program. Contact your union for other short-term disability programs that can be purchased at group rates.

For illness of family members, up to 15 days per calendar year of your sick leave accruals may be used.
For family and medical leave information (FLMA), contact Human Resources. FLMA information described here: http://www.dol.gov/esa/whd/fmla

Medical documentation may be required for absences; please contact Human Resources for the Confidential Medical Statement.
Using your health insurance benefits efficiently is especially important during times of illness or disability. Read plan documents, and contact your insurance carrier(s) with any questions or confusion. Be sure to follow their policies for pre-authorizations and other plan rules.

Long-term disability programs are available depending upon your bargaining unit.

 

Divorce

For a name change, contact the Social Security Administration www.socialsecurity.gov.

Tax withholding changes; changing designation of beneficiaries for life insurance and retirement plans.

Once divorced, your ex-spouse cannot be covered under the New York State Health Insurance Program, which includes all our health insurance carriers. An application for COBRA coverage can be considered. If there are no children, you may switch to an individual only plan. Contact Employee Benefits for options and forms. Your former spouse will no longer be eligible for your dental and vision plans.

 

Domestic Partner

To add or remove a domestic partner, forms are completed in Employee Benefits. When adding a domestic partner, consider costs of imputed income, which means that a portion of the health insurance premium becomes taxable income; along with a possible change from individual to family coverage. Various proofs of shared financial and residential status are required, along with your partner's identification documents such as Social Security card, and date of birth document.

Eligibility guidelines may be found on the NYS Department of Civil Service web site. Please select your bargaining unit affiliation; for example, UUP, CSEA, etc.

http://www.cs.state.ny.us/ebd/ebdonlinecenter/newgib/uup/03who.cfm?section=hi&group=uup

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Job Change

An increase or decrease in your percentage of work, or salary, can affect your eligibility for future permanency, benefits, or leave accruals. Changing from one bargaining unit to another can also change the kinds of benefits, including plan carriers, for which you are eligible.

For details about benefits impact, visit the "Benefits" section of the Human Resources web site and contact HR Benefits staff.  In most cases, there is a seamless transition among benefits programs. Please call Human Resources with questions about your particular job change and how it could affect your employment - contact the Employment area that relates to your question (Faculty, Professional, Classified).

 

 

 

Marriage

For a name change, contact the Social Security Administration www.socialsecurity.gov. Then, report the name change to your department; and Human Resources, Employee Benefits, along with a copy of your new Social Security card.

Also consider tax withholding changes; and changing your designation of beneficiaries for life insurance and retirement plans.

Health insurance, dental and vision plans: to add your new spouse without a waiting period, contact Employee Benefits within 7 days of the date of marriage to complete a PS-404 form, along with marriage certificate, Social Security card, and date of birth documents for your spouse.

 

Moving


For an address change, contact your local post office. http://www.switchboard.com/usps.1355/dir/6_0/index.htm?mem=1355
Report your address change to your department; Human Resources, Employee Benefits, and retirement system plans.

Update all your plans that you might carry through unions or other agencies.

Please refer to our Address Change section for additional information.

 

Name Change


For a name change, contact the Social Security Administration www.socialsecurity.gov. Then, report the name change to your department; and Human Resources, Employee Benefits, along with a copy of your new Social Security card. Report the change to other plans that you might carry through unions or other agencies.

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Retirement

The New York State Governor's Office of Employee Relations has an online pre-retirement planning guide:
http://www.goer.state.ny.us/train/onlinelearning/pr/intro.html


In addition, the Governors' Office of Employee Relations now provides an online version of Directions at: http://www.worklife.state.ny.us/preretirement/selfhelpguide/

Also, contact the HR Benefits staff and the appropriate Employment area (Faculty, Professional, Classified).

For information about ways to stay connected to the University, please visit our Retirees section on this website or call Corinna Kruman, Retiree Services Coordinator, at 777-5959.

 

Health Insurance in Retirement

For matters related directly to health insurance options, Employee Benefits has booklets and videos from the NYS Department of Civil Service.

The NYS Insurance Plan discusses State retiree health insurance at:

http://www.cs.state.ny.us/ebd/ebdonlinecenter/preretresource/index.cfm

Social Security Administration (including Medicare): http://www.ssa.gov/

 

Pension Estimates and Options:


NYS Employees' Retirement System members can project their pension benefits at:
http://www.osc.state.ny.us/retire/members/projmodl.htm

NYS Employees' Retirement System has retirement planning resources at:
http://www.osc.state.ny.us/retire/planning/index.htm

NYS Employees' Retirement System maintains a listing of useful retirement related links at:
http://www.osc.state.ny.us/retire/links.htm

NYS Teachers' Retirement System has retirement planning resources at:
http://www.nystrs.org/main/retirementplanning.html

TIAA-Cref sponsors this site: http://www.tiaa-cref.org/support/planning/index.html

ING provides retirement planning resources at:
http://www6.ingretirementplans.com/SponsorExtranet/SUNY/Education/index.html

AIG Valic provides retirement planning resources at:
http://aigvalic.com/valic2003/aigvalic.nsf/contents/edu_retire

MetLife provides retirement planning resources at: http://www.metlife.com/individual/retirement/retirement-planning-tools/index.html


Fidelity provides retirement planning resources at:
http://personal.fidelity.com/planning/retirement/retirement_planning.shtml.cvsr?bar=c

Social Security Administration (including Medicare):
http://www.ssa.gov/

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Turning 65

If you are currently employed, Medicare is not required even when you turn age 65; enrollment while employed can complicate billing and paperwork with your active employee health insurance plans. 
If you are retired, once you turn age 65, you MUST enroll for Medicare, as it becomes primary in coordination with your retiree health insurance plans.  For more information, see the Department of Civil Service Employee Benefits website. Follow links to retirement information.    http://www.cs.state.ny.us/ebd/welcome/login.cfm
   
Work / Career EventsConsiderations
Employment

Promotion or Other Job Change

For questions about process and policies, call the applicable Employment area of Human Resources (Classified, Professional, Faculty).  For career coaching assistance, contact John Wojcio, jwojcio@binghamton.edu

Leaving University Employment

Call the applicable Employment area of Human Resources (Classified, Professional, Faculty).  In general, you should provide as much advance notice as you can to your supervisor and Human Resources if retiring or resigning. End dates for benefits programs, vacation payout, and other information are available from Human Resources staff. 
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Last Updated: 4/1/14