Welcome to the Benefits Resource Page
You may use the navigation links on the left-hand side to access additional information you may need such as our current calendar year plans and premiums.
Important Information - Affordable Care Act
Affordable Care Act Health Insurance Marketplace Notice
Very soon, you will be receiving the Health Insurance Marketplace notice below in the mail from the University System of Georgia.
Under the Affordable Care Act, the University System of Georgia, as your employer, is required to provide you this notice.
If you have questions about the Health Insurance Marketplace, please visit the Federal Health Insurance Marketplace website at https://www.healthcare.gov/families/. The State of Georgia has opted not to operate a Health Insurance Marketplace and therefore, individuals in Georgia will use the federal Health Insurance Marketplace to enroll in coverage.
The University System of Georgia’s HSA Open Access POS plan meets the Affordability Requirement under the Affordable Care Act. Therefore, in general, University System of Georgia employees who are eligible for health insurance will not be eligible for a tax credit in 2014 through the Health Insurance Marketplace (or Exchanges) created under the Affordable Care Act, the University System of Georgia, as your employer, is required to provide you this notice.
If you have questions about
Employee Benefits Summary
The following paragraphs briefly describe the benefit programs of the institution available to all regularly employed staff and faculty members serving in a half-time or better capacity. Further details on these benefits are available in Human Resources and Employee Development. Certain benefits may be continued upon your retirement, assuming you have 10 years of University System service and you meet the requirements for the associated plan of retirement. Details on these benefits are available in Human Resources and Employee Development. Certain programs of insurance may be converted to private coverage upon separation. Conversion must be made during a 30-day period following last date of employment. Contact Human Resources and Employee Development for further details.
Leave, Social Security, Workers Compensation Benefits
Sick Leave: Staff employed on a half-time or better regular basis are entitled to a monthly sick leave accrual. The maximum monthly accrual is eight hours per month for full-time staff. Other eligible staff members earn sick leave in an equivalent ratio to their percentage of employment. There is no limit on the amount of sick leave one may accrue. Valdosta State University also participates in a Shared Sick leave Program.
Vacation Time: The rate of accumulating annual leave is based on the anniversary date of current employment as shown below. Regular staff and administrative employees working half-time or more shall earn and accrue vacation time in an equivalent ratio to their percentage of time employed. Accumulated vacation leave cannot exceed 360 hours at December 31 of each calendar year. Upon termination of employment, vacation accrued values may be paid to the staff member, not to exceed the 360 maximum.
- Family Medical Leave: Any regular employee who has been employed on a half-time or greater basis by Valdosta State University for at least twelve months and who meets the federally defined criteria is eligible for twelve weeks of family leave during a twelve month period commencing on the date the family leave begins. Family leave shall be unpaid leave; however, if an employee is eligible to use accumulated sick and/or annual leave, the employee may do so after obtaining permission from his/her supervisor.
- Social Security: All regular staff members are covered by Social Security. Enrollment in this program and deductions will be taken from all earned wages.
Worker’s Compensation: Provisions of the Worker’s Compensation Act administrated by the State of Georgia’s Department of Administrative Services (DOAS) cover all staff members. If you are injured on the job, you must report the injury to your supervisor immediately. Your supervisor will report your injury to DOAS and AmeriSys who will assist in selecting a physician as well as scheduling appointments and follow-up care.
Medical, Dental, Life Insurance, and Disability Information
Benefits eligible employees have a variety of options to choose from in order to meet their healthcare needs. Newly eligible employees have 30 days from their effective date to select benefit options for themselves and their eligible dependents.
Newly benefits eligible employees may have their coverage start on the 1st of the month after enrollment. For example, an employee becomes benefits eligible on February 1, 2015, and he enrolls in benefits on February 3rd. His coverage will begin on the first day of the next month- March 1, 2015. If the employee enrolls on the first of the month, benefits will be effective on that day.
On an annual basis, the University offers an open enrollment period. During this period, employees may change their healthcare plan elections and levels of coverage for the upcoming calendar year.
- Health Insurance: Within a 30-day period of your employment, and without proof of insurability, you may enroll yourself and eligible dependents in the health insurance program. Employees have the option of going with one of two plans under the health insurance program: Consumer Choice HSA Plan, and the Comprehensive Care Plan. Enrollment beyond initial eligibility can only be accomplished during the open enrollment period. Please note that while BlueChoice HMO and Kaiser Permanent HMO are listed on the USG site, they are only available to select Universities within the system.
- Dental Insurance: The dental plan provides for two check-ups and cleanings per year without a deductible and coverage for restorative work at 80% after a $50 annual deductible. The plan has a $1,000 orthodontic lifetime maximum benefit and $1,500 annual maximum benefit per person.
- Flexible Spending and Health Saving Programs: All eligible employees may participate in this program, which is authorized under Section 125 of the I.R.S. Code. Enrollment may be upon employment and/or during the open enrollment period. Changes cannot be made unless a qualifying event occurs, e.g., marriage, death. Changes must be consistent with qualifying event. A U.S. Bank Health Savings Account (HSA) and/or Flexible Spending Account (FSA) can save you money on eligible healthcare, dental, vision, and dependent care expenses. Your contributions to these accounts are tax-free, saving you money on federal and state income taxes and Social Security taxes.
- Long Term and Short Term Disability: Available upon employment without proof of medical insurability, thereafter, during open enrollment with medical approval by the company.
- Basic Life Insurance: The University upon your employment provides $25,000 in life insurance. Enrollment is automatic; however, beneficiary and other personal data are required. Human Resources and Employee Development will provide forms for your completion.
Supplemental Life Insurance: Upon employment and without proof of insurability within a 30-day period, you may purchase up to three times your contract salary in additional life insurance. Premiums are based upon employee’s age and amount of protection elected. Thereafter, requested enrollment is limited to open enrollment period and proof of insurability must be provided to company for approval of coverage.
Spouse and Child Life: Spouse coverage options are available in amounts from $10,000 to $500,000. Newly eligible employees may elect $50,000 with no Evidence of Insurability (EOI). Existing employees electing coverage or new employees electing coverage over $50,000 will require the EOI process. Child(ren) coverage options are available in the amounts of $5,000, $10,000, or $15,000. No EOI is required.
- AFLAC: Provides several programs that are in addition to regular health coverage and are direct-pay to the employee. Before tax and after tax plans are available. Offered within the first 30 days of employment and during open enrollment. Information is available through the vendor or in Human Resources and Employee Development.
Retirement Plans: Half-time or better regularly employed staff members must participate in the Teachers Retirement System (TRS) of Georgia’s retirement plan. Part-time staff members not otherwise covered by a public retirement program must participate in the State of Georgia’s Defined Contribution Plan. Faculty and some administrative positions may also choose the Optional Retirement Plan (ORP). Those requiring further details on these programs are encouraged to contact Human Resources and Employee Development.
Supplemental Retirement Plans: The advantage of pre-tax savings programs under the provisions of Section 403(b) and 457 of the I.R.S. code is available to all staff members; including temporary staff. You may contact Human Resources and Employee Development to determine which companies are represented.
Other Resources and Additional Valdosta State Benefits
Georgia Higher Education Savings Plan: Employees participate in this “pre-tax” program which offers a smart and flexible way to help save for future higher education expenses for eligible dependents.
Long Term Care: Involves a wide variety of services for the employee and eligible dependents with prolonged physical or cognitive disability. Offered within the first 30 days of employment and during open enrollment. See Human Resources and Employee Development for more details.