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Health Benefits

Health Insurance

Note regarding enrollments and changes to benefits: Please note that in general, any new enrollment or change in coverage must be processed within 60 days of the event. However, since new enrollments/changes are not effective for 3-4 paychecks after application is received, we strongly recommend that you do not wait any longer than 2 weeks turn in a new enrollment or change application.

Any regular employee, working at least 50 percent of the time is eligible to participate in the University's health benefit programs.

The State of Maryland Health Benefits enrollment form is used to select the benefits programs in which you want to participate. You select the programs you want, the level of coverage you desire, and who is covered under the plan. All plans are optional unless you have visa requirements. You have sixty (60) days to enroll in a plan from your initial employment date or qualifying event, however it is a very long process and we request that forms be returned within two weeks of your start date.

Remember that you will not be able to cancel, change, or add to your coverage once you have made these decisions until the next open enrollment period. Changes made during Open Enrollment are currently effective July 1. Exceptions to this rule are allowed only under limited circumstances. Once you have selected a plan, you must stay in the selected plan, at the selected coverage level, for the full calendar year, unless there has been a qualifying event. A qualifying event is a change in family status, such as the birth of a child, loss of a dependent, marriage, or divorce. A qualifying event can also occur in cases where your spouse's employment is terminated. Therefore, it is very important that you make careful and informed decisions regarding your benefits coverage.

If you are planning on including your dependents, you must have documentation including proof of marriage and proof of spouse residency, and proof of birth or adoption for children.

New Enrollments have an effective date of either the first or the sixteenth of the month, depending upon the pay period for which a deduction is taken from your paycheck. The state payroll system usually takes three pay cycles to begin premium deductions from your paycheck.

New employees to the Department of Computer Science receive detailed Department and Benefit Information including all forms at the time of their Payroll Appointment. You should contact Jodie Gray to set up your appointment.

Health Benefit Forms for Department of Computer Science employees are available in room 4169 A.V. Williams Building or on the Benefits website, and are due to Jodie Graytwo weeks from the date of eligibility including newly employed and all changes in Family Status.

Termination of Health Benefits

Health benefits may only be terminated at the end of your employment contract, or during the Open Enrollment Period. In the event that your health insurance is terminated, you may seek private insurance, or if you qualify,you may enroll in COBRA. Enrolling in COBRA allows you to continue your current coverage by paying the State's portion of your health contribution (you may view this on the left side of your pay advice, under "State Subsidies") in addition to what is deducted each pay period. COBRA can be very expensive; however it allows you to continue your current coverage without a break in coverage and without concern of pre-existing conditions being covered. COBRA applications are processed directly by the State and do not go through Jodie.

Retirement Planning and Programs

Selecting a Retirement or Pension Plan is mandatory for all eligible employees; we cannot process your payroll without knowing your retirement choice. If you are unable to come and do paperwork prior to your start date, we will request that you notify us of your choice by email. All retirement paperwork must be completed within 5 days of your start date. Your salary will not released until you have made your selection.

You have the choice of enrolling in the Maryland State retirement plan or one of the Optional Retirement plans, which are currently TIAA-CREF and Fidelity. There are benefits and drawbacks to both types of plans and you should weigh your choices carefully. The following information and comparison charts are available to help you make your decision, and you may also consult with our benefits specialists on campus.

When you enroll in the Maryland State retirement system, each year, the State contributes a certain percentage of your salary to the SRPS which is determined annually by the State System's actuary. You currently must contribute 5% of your annual salary. When you enroll in the ORP plans, you do not contribute from your paycheck; however, the State still contributes 7.25% of your salary toward your retirement.

Retirement Plan Information

Retirement Planning and Programs

State Pension System/Optional Retirement Program Comparison Booklet

Supplemental Retirement Plans

Contributing to your Retirement

If you would like to contribute additional funds toward your retirement, you must enroll in an SRA plan, which again are administered either through the State of Maryland, TIAA-CREF or Fidelity. Several options are available and information about these plans may be found on the University of Maryland Benefits Office Website.

Planning for Retirement

Related Links

  • State of Maryland application for an Estimate of service Retirement Allowance
  • Social Security Administration
  • Application for a Social Security Card
  • Internal Revenue Service
  • Tuition Remission

    Policies and procedures for employees, spouses, and dependents to receive tuition remission.


    UMCP Institutions

    UMCP encourages and supports University faculty, staff and retirees, both on the College Park campus and within the University System of Maryland (USM), to make use of the opportunity to enroll in academic courses at UMCP. Tuition remission benefits are also available for the spouse and dependents of regular status and retired faculty and staff members. Tuition remission is available to those choosing to utilize the benefit in accordance with the Board of Regent's Policy VII-4.10 "University System of Maryland Policy on Tuition Remission for Faculty and Staff," and policy VII-4.20 "University System of Maryland Policy Concerning Tuition Remission for Spouses and Dependent Children of Faculty and Staff."

    Other USM Institutions

    Regular-status faculty and staff have the option of utilizing tuition remission to attend other USM institutions, as well as Baltimore City Community College, St. Mary's College of Maryland, and Morgan State University. In addition to the University of Maryland, College Park, the USM institutions are: University of Maryland, University College; University of Maryland, Baltimore; University of Baltimore; University of Maryland, Baltimore County; University of Maryland, Eastern Shore; Towson University; Frostburg State University; Bowie State University; Coppin State University; and Salisbury University.

    The tuition remission request form must be completed for tuition remission requests for other campuses. The Department of Computer Science keeps a supply of these tuition remission forms; Or select USM Tuition Remission Request Form". Once the request is completed, Department of Computer Science Employees should turn the form in to Jodie Gray, 4169 A.V. Williams Building.

    Graduate Students

    **Tuition remission will automatically be processed when you register for classes.** Please remember: Graduate Students, Spouse and/or dependent children must pay all Mandatory fees.

    How Do I Apply for Tuition Remission?

    UMCP Campus Requests

    Application for tuition remission is now done on-line. The new electronic form called "TR-ELF" is available on the ARES website, selecting ELF form. The forms should be completed on-line, then routed to your designated departmental approver, who will send the form on to the Personnel Services Benefits Office for final approval and processing. Please see your departmental payroll and benefits clerk for more information on processing the TR-ELF request. Tip sheets for completing a TR-Elf Request are available below.

    The Department of Computer Science Electronic Tuition Remission forms are to be routed to Jodie Gray. Tuition Remission information and the current process due dates are sent on a semester basis via email.

    Tuition Credit Limits

    University of Maryland, College Park Benefits
    Request for: Fall Spring Summer Winter Notes
    Graduate Assistant
    (20 hours)
    10 credits 10 credits 4 credits Not Offered MEI courses are not covered; typically only attend home campus
    Graduate Assistant
    (10 hours)
    5 credits 5 credits 2 credits Not Offered MEI courses are not covered; typically only attend home campus
    Faculty/Staff **
    prorated to % of employment
    2 courses, 8 credits max 2 courses, 8 credits max 2 courses, 6 credits max Not Offered May attend any USM college for undergaduate and graduate courses
    Permanent Part Time Employees/Staff (50 %)
    prorated to % of employment
    1 course, 4 credits max 1 course, 4 credits max 1 course, 3 credits max Not Offered May attend any USM college for undergaduate and graduate courses
    Spouse/Dependents of Employees
    hired before Jan. 1, 1990
    prorated to % of employment
    Up to 15 credits Up to 15 credits 1 course, 4 credits max Not Offered May attend any USM college for undergraduate and graduate courses
    Spouse/Dependents of Employees
    hired after Jan. 1, 1990

    prorated to % of employment
    Up to 15 credits Up to 15 credits 1 course, 4 credits max Not Offered May only attend UMCP for the 1st undergrad degree only after the employee meets 2 year eligiblity period
    Fellow ** ***** Direct toward Regina Clary 301-405-4180 ***** Up to 15 credits pending whether or not they have a split GA/Fellowship

    TR-ELF Tips

    Benefit FAQ's

    See link for Benefits FAQ.