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Health Care Bonus Waiver

Published on: 12/19/2012 5:19 PM
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What Is The Health Care Bonus Waiver Program?

This program allows an employee to receive a taxable increase in gross wages by waiving medical coverage through the County. An employee may elect to continue with dental, vision and basic life insurance coverage, or may waive all benefits. The amount received by the employee is the same whether medical-only is waived or the all benefits are waived.
 
How Does This Program Work?
 
A full-time employee elects to waive medical-only or all benefits, and then receives $74.00 per payperiod in taxable wages. Part-time employees who participate in this program will receive an amount based on prorated formulas as determined by coded standard hours. An employee who elects to participate in this program must complete the necessary paperwork and provide written documentation showing proof of medical coverage with an insurance program other than that provided by the County. Written documentation may include a letter from the insurance company, a letter from the spouse or same-sex domestic partner’s employer, or an annual benefits statement from another employer or insurance company, all of which must show current coverage for the plan year. Your health plan card is not sufficient proof of coverage.
 
When Do I Make An Election For This Plan?
 
You must elect to participate in this plan within 30 days of your date of hire, within 30 days of a qualifying event, or during the annual open enrollment period, normally during the month of November. IRS regulations require that employees participating in this plan must re-elect each calendar year. If you fail to make an election of either this program or for enrollment in a medical plan, then the County will automatically enroll you in the Valley Health Plan and you will be required to wait until the next open enrollment period to re-enroll in this program. Election of this program is for the entire calendar year.
 
What Happens If I Experience A Loss In Other Medical Coverage?
 
Within 30 days of experiencing a loss of other coverage, you may enroll in a County-sponsored medical plan. You must provide written documentation that states the date of loss of other medical coverage. Once you re-enroll in a County-sponsored medical plan, your biweekly compensation will cease.
 
What If I Retire While Participating In This Program?
 
An employee who participates in this program and retires during the plan year will not be eligible to enroll in a County-sponsored medical plan until the next annual open enrollment period for medical plans, usually during the month of September.  Exception:  An employee who participates in this program, who retires and moves out of state may elect to enroll in the Payment-in-Lieu program as long as the retiree provides written documentation on an annual basis.
 
Can I Participate In This Program If I Am Married To Another County Employee Or Am A Same-Sex Domestic Partner Of Another County Employee?
 
An employee who is married to, or is a partner of, another County employee, and both employees have one medical plan between them, are not allowed to participate in the Health Care Bonus Waiver Program. This provision does not apply to any Court employee who is married to, or is a partner of, a County employee.
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