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Benefits Department
Scott Park Campus
Academic Services
Suite 1000

Mailing address:
The University of Toledo
Benefits Department
2801 W Bancroft
MS 405
Toledo, OH 43606

Phone: 419.530.4747
Fax: 419.530.1492 benefits@utoledo.edu

Domestic Partner Benefits

Eligibility

Employees in a Bargaining Unit should refer to the appropriate collective bargaining agreement for specific details regarding eligibility. Visit the Labor Relations Page to view collective bargaining agreements.

The definition of a domestic partner (same sex and opposite sex) for the purpose for administering applicable benefits is an individual who is registered by an eligible employee with a notarized affidavit and supporting documentation attesting that the domestic partner is all of the following:

  • At least 18 years of age, competent to enter into a contract
  • Each other’s sole domestic partner and intend to remain so indefinitely and are emotionally and financially responsible for each other’s common welfare
  • Not legally married to another individual
  • Not related to each other by blood in a manner that would bar marriage in the State of Ohio
  • In a relationship that has been in existence for six (6) consecutive months or more, and has shared a residence for six (6) consecutive months or more
  • Has allowed at least six (6) months to pass since the termination of any previous domestic partnership.

Eligible dependent children of the domestic partner of a University employee are also eligible for healthcare, dependent life, and tuition fee waiver according to established University procedures, healthcare and life insurance benefit plan documents, and/or applicable bargaining agreements.

Domestic Partner Benefits Application Process

To apply for domestic partner benefits a Domestic Partner Affidavit must be completed, required supporting documentation must be provided, as well as applicable enrollment forms. The following steps should be taken:

  • Review the Affidavit of Domestic Partnership Form
  • Review the Domestic Partner Tax Information
  • Consult an attorney and tax advisor concerning any legal obligations that may be created by the affidavit.
  • Complete the affidavit and have it notarized.
  • Complete the enrollment on MyUT for applicable situation (Newly Hired/Newly Eligible, Qualifying Event, Open Enrollment or Tuition Waiver)
  • Submit the notarized affidavit and required supporting documentation to Human Resources Office (Attention: Benefits, MS 405) for review.
  • A copy of the approved affidavit will be returned to you only upon request.

Policies

The following employee leaves will be modified to include time off for domestic partners of University employees and their eligible family members:

  • Bereavement leave
  • Sick leave
  • Family and Medical Leave Act

Benefits

The following benefits will be extended to eligible University employee’s domestic partner and the partner’s eligible children:

  • Medical/prescription, vision, and dental insurance upon payment of the applicable premium
  • Dependent life insurance upon payment of applicable premium
  • Tuition waiver
  • Access to the programs, services and facilities of the University

Flexible spending and health savings accounts are governed by IRS rules. The IRS does not recognize domestic partner status, therefore, reimbursement for an eligible domestic partner’s or the partner’s children’s healthcare and/or dependent care expenses cannot be administered through a flexible spending or health savings account.

Benefit Plan Enrollment

Medical Plans (includes prescription, dental and vision)
Enrolling a domestic partner in University-sponsored medical plans is subject to the same plan provisions that apply to a spouse and child. Enrollment in the University’s medical plans is limited to an annual Open Enrollment period and mid-year changes are restricted to 30 days following the date on which a domestic partner or child of the domestic partner becomes newly eligible.

Dependent children of the domestic partner are eligible for medical benefits if the following conditions are satisfied:

Children up to age 26 (can remain on the plan until the end of the year they turn 26)

  • The child is a natural child, stepchild, adopted child,  or a child who has been placed under the legal guardianship of the domestic partner in anticipation of adoption
  • The child is a member of the employee’s household.

Eligibility for dental and vision coverage for all dependent children terminates at the end of the calendar year in which the child attains the age of twenty four (24) providing all of the following conditions are satisfied:

  • The child is a full time student with 12 or more credit hours
  • The child is unmarried
  • The child is the employees IRS tax dependent

If the child does not meet the requirements listed above their dental and vision coverage terminates the end of the year the child attains the age of nineteen (19) unless the child qualifies for coverage due to status as a disabled child.

Dependent Life Insurance


New employees have thirty (30) days from their date of hire to enroll for dependent (domestic partner and/or dependent child of the domestic partner) life insurance. To apply for dependent life insurance after this time period, employees must provide evidence of insurability for each dependent for which dependent life insurance is sought.

Dependent children of the domestic partner are eligible for dependent life insurance if all of the following conditions are satisfied:

  • The child is unmarried; and
  • The child is a natural child, stepchild, legally adopted child, foster child or a child who is dependent on you for main support and living with you in a regular parent-child relationship; and
  • The child is the employees IRS tax dependent

Eligibility for life insurance for all dependent children terminates at the end of the calendar year in which the child attains the age of twenty-four (24).

Tuition Waiver


Employees who meet the eligibility criteria may apply for the tuition fee waiver for their domestic partner and/or child of a domestic partner. Please see applicable provisions of the University policy manual or respective collective bargaining agreements for the length of time a University employee must be employed by the University in order for his/her domestic partner and/or child of a domestic partner to be eligible for tuition waiver.

Eligibility for tuition fee waiver for all dependent children terminates once the child is no longer considered a personal exemption under Section 152 of the Internal Revenue Code for federal income tax purposes. Employee must complete tuition waiver questionnaire for dependent children.

COBRA

Although federal law does not require the University to provide COBRA health care continuation coverage, the University will provide such equivalent coverage to eligible domestic partners and the partner’s eligible children under the same circumstances as for an employee’s spouse and children. Eligible domestic partners of University employees and the partner’s eligible children must apply for COBRA equivalent benefits within sixty (60) days of the date that eligibility for medical insurance ends. Failure to timely notify the University will result in the forfeiture of COBRA health care continuation coverage.

Registration of a domestic partner may take place any time during the year; however, enrollment in health care and life insurance benefit plans is governed by the same enrollment periods as those for a spouse and/or children of the employee. If an application for health care or life insurance is later than thirty (30) days after the initial date of eligibility, the participant shall be a late enrollee and, except as provided under “Special Enrollment Date” for qualifying events as provided under applicable plan documents, coverage for eligible domestic partner and/or child of a domestic partner shall not become effective until the first day of the next year following the next open enrollment period.

Confidential information provided in the Affidavit of Domestic Partnership used to register and/or apply for domestic partner benefits will be kept confidential to the extent permitted by business necessity and the law. For example, documents may be disclosed in response to a court order, subpoena, or public records request. Additionally, the University will need to share information with University administrators to make appropriate payroll and tax deductions and with third parties with whom the University contracts for benefits programs.

Termination of Domestic Partner Relationship

Employees who have enrolled for domestic partner benefits must notify the University within thirty (30) days of the termination of the relationship by submitting a “Termination of Domestic Partnership” form. The form is available upon request from the Benefits office.

Eligibility for benefits for the former domestic partner and his/her children ends on the last day of the month of the date of termination of the relationship. An employee’s failure to notify the University of the termination of the domestic partner relationship constitutes fraud and may result in any or all of the following:

  • Liability for claims paid for ineligible services to both the employee and their domestic partner.
  • Cancellation of the employee’s medical and other insurance.
  • Termination of employment under the provisions of University policy or applicable law or collective bargaining agreement.

Additionally, failure to timely notify the University of the termination of the relationship jeopardizes COBRA equivalent health care continuation coverage for the former domestic partner and his/her children.

Legal Concerns

Due to unanticipated legal obligations that may be created between the employee and partner by submitting an Affidavit of Domestic Partnership, the University advises both parties to consult an attorney for advice.

The information contained in this document summarizes only the main features of the University’s benefit plans. If there are any discrepancies between this document and the Plan itself, the actual provisions of the Plan will govern.

Important Tax Information

PLEASE READ THIS NOTICE CAREFULLY

Employees applying for domestic partner benefits (including medical insurance and tuition waivers) should be aware that such benefits have significant tax consequences. This statement is not intended as tax or legal advice but rather to alert employees of the potential tax ramifications. Under current Internal Revenue Code provisions, the “fair market value” of certain benefits is considered taxable income to the employee and must be included on their W-2. Under current federal law, domestic partners do not share the same status and corresponding tax benefits as those of a legal spouse. The University must report the fair market value of certain domestic partner benefits as wages to the Internal Revenue Service and make additional tax withholdings from the employee’s pay.

These taxes can be avoided only if the employee is eligible to claim the domestic partner and/or the partner’s child as a tax dependent under IRC Section 152. In this case, the employee should submit a Certification of Tax-Qualified Dependents form to the Human Resources Office.

The amount of the additional taxable income for medical coverage depends upon the plan in which the employee is enrolled, employee salary and the resulting level of coverage (employee + one, family)

  • Example 1 – If medical benefit with a calculated cost to the University of $360/month is provided to a domestic partner, not meeting the dependent qualification test under IRC regulations, and the employee’s monthly deductible from their check is $150; the monthly taxable portion to the employee is $210 ($2,520 annually). The annual amount will be included on the employee’s W-2.
  • Example 2 – A domestic partner takes a four hour undergraduate class at the University under the tuition waiver program. The Fair Market Value of the program (based on 05/06 tuition rates) of $1,071.64 ($267.91/hr X 4) is taxable and included on the employees annual W-2. Only the portion covered by fee waiver is taxable (imputed income), any lab or tech fees are not as the employee or the domestic partner is required to pay this. The tuition waiver portion will be included on the employee’s W-2.

 

Benefit

Domestic Partner and/or Eligible Child(ren) do NOT meet the definition of a Tax Qualified Dependent

Domestic Partner and/or Eligible Child(ren) meet the definition of a Tax Qualified Dependent

 

Medical Benefits

Taxable

Not Taxable

 

Tuition Waiver

Taxable

Not Taxable

 

Access to Programs, Services, and Facilities

Not Taxable if at Fair Market Value is reimbursed to University

Not Taxable in certain circumstances

[1] If an employee considers certifying his or her partner as a tax dependent, consulting a tax advisor is recommended.  Falsely certifying a tax dependent may result in charges of tax fraud by the IRS and disciplinary action (including termination) by the University.  This document is not specific legal or tax advice.

 

Last Updated: 9/22/17