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What are my options for time away from work?
You may be eligible for leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) during your pregnancy and following the birth, adoption, or foster care placement of your child. Eligible employees may be entitled to up to six (6) weeks of paid parental leave for qualifying events occuring on or after October 15. 2020.
Contact your FMLA Specialist or call the HRSC Absence Services Division at 717.346.4667.
What health insurance changes can I make and how?
You are able to add your children and eligible stepchildren to your coverage. If you elect coverage through your spouse's plan, you may drop your coverage. You may enroll your dependents in benefits at any time. Keep in mind that if you wish to drop coverage or elect a new plan, you must submit the proper documentation
within 60 days of the date of birth or adoption. Visit ESS and select the PEBTF Benefits Enrollment tile to begin the process.
Beginning in 2021, you can set aside a portion of your pre-tax earnings through payroll deduction to help pay for eligibile out-of-pocket health care expenses by enrolling in a Health Care Flexible Spending Account. If you want to learn more or have questions, call Businessolver at 833.628.0580 or visit the Employee Resource Center > Benefits or www.myHRonline.pa.gov.
When should I add my child to coverage?
You may enroll your child immediately after birth or adoption. Visit ESS and select the PEBTF Benefits Enrollment tile to begin the process. Don’t wait. You must enroll your newborn child within 60 days from the child’s date of birth. As it is very rare that the birth certificate or Social Security Number is made available immediately, you have 6 months from the date of birth to provide this information to the HR Service Center as long as you enroll your child within 60 days from the child's date of birth.
Please note that if you fail to submit the Social Security Number or verification of the birth certificate timely, the child will be removed from benefit coverage retroactively to the date of enrollment.
Are there other insurance programs I should review?
The commonwealth offers several optional insurance programs you may want to consider. If you already participate in any of these plans, you should review your current choices to ensure they continue to meet your needs. You may purchase additional life insurance for yourself or your eligible dependents. Likewise, you may also purchase short-term and/or long-term disability coverage.
For more information, please contact Prudential at 800.893.7316 or visit the website for commonwealth employees. For detailed information or to enroll in critical illness insurance, please contact MetLife at 877.755.7480 x2001 or visit the website for commonwealth employees.
How do I update my beneficiaries?
You may be enrolled in other plans offered by the commonwealth. You should review your designated beneficiaries.
If you have questions, you may contact each provider directly or complete and follow the submission instructions on the forms provided below:
Should I change my tax withholding?
Adding dependents could affect the amount of taxes you pay. You may want to speak with a financial consultant to discuss your situation. If you would like to change your filing status and withholding, you may do so in ESS under Payroll Information. You may contact the HR Service Center by phone or complete a new W-4 form and submit it to the HR Service Center.
Are there other benefit programs that I should consider?
Consider enrolling in the Family Care Account Program (FCAP) if you will be incurring any child care or dependent care expenses. This program allows you to reduce your taxable income by saving pre-tax funds for these expenses.
Beginning in 2021, this plan will be called the Dependent Care Account Program (DCAP). If you want to learn more or have questions, call Businessolver at 833.628.0580 or visit the Employee Resource Center > Benefits or www.myHRonline.pa.gov.
If you are in need of child care and your child is between the ages of six weeks and five years old, you may want to consider the Governor's Model Child Care Program. This program offers child care at three centers located in the Harrisburg area. Care is available for children who are related to a commonwealth employee, including children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and children for whom the employee is the guardian. For program and registration information, please contact the Child Care Centers directly.
It may seem early to begin thinking about secondary education but starting early is key. Consider joining the PA 529 College Savings Program or speaking with a financial advisor to determine what is best for you.
The Pennsylvania Achieving a Better Life Experience (PA ABLE) program gives individuals with qualified disabilities (eligible individuals), and their families and friends, a tax-free way to save for disability-related expenses, while maintaining government benefits. Federal and state law authorized the creation of PA ABLE accounts.