Medicare Creditable Coverage Notices
Faculty and staff participating in state employee (COVA) health coverage who are aged 65 or over, or who are covering family members aged 65 or over, will be sent Medicare Creditable Coverage Notices by mail during October. No employee action is required, however the notices should be kept for future use when enrolling in Medicare prescription drug coverage after age 65. For more information about Medicare and state health coverage during VCU employment, see Medicare FAQ.
Public Service Loan Forgiveness Limited Waiver Opportunity
On October 6, 2021, the U.S. Department of Education announced a change to Public Service Loan Forgiveness program rules. For a limited time, borrowers may receive credit for past payments made on loans that would otherwise not qualify. Read more about the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program rules.
Virginia Retirement System Updates
- Member benefit profiles are now available for VRS, VaLORS, and VRS Hybrid participants.
- VRS and ORP participants can now update group life insurance beneficiaries online in MyVRS.
- VRS members can now apply for retirement online.
Grace Period for 2020-2021 Plan Year Dependent Care Flexible Spending Accounts
The State Health Benefits Program is adding a Grace Period to the 2020-2021 Dependent Care Flexible Spending Accounts plan year (7/1/2020 - 6/30/2021) which will extend the period to incur claims until October 31, 2021. More details about the Grace Period will be announced in early May. There will not be a Grace Period for 2020-2021 Health Care Flexible Spending Accounts. See FAQs for more details.
Campus operations are currently altered in response to COVID-19.
All benefit election(s) and supporting documentation must be returned by creating a service request at go.vcu.edu/hrsupport, by email or fax, or by uploading to VCU Filelocker. See Enroll in Benefits page.
2021 Deferral Limits for Voluntary Retirement Savings
The 2021 annual deferral limit for 403(b) and 457(b) retirement savings plans will be $19,500. The limit for each plan type applies to pre-tax and after-tax (Roth) contributions combined in the following plans:
- The VCU 403(b) Tax Deferred Annuity Plan (“TDA")
- The Commonwealth of Virginia 457(b) Deferred Compensation Plan (“DCP”)
- The Virginia Retirement System (VRS) Hybrid 457Plan (available to Virginia Retirement System Hybrid Plan participants only)
Note to Hybrid Plan participants: Voluntary contributions to the VRS Hybrid Plan are made to the VRS Hybrid 457. These contributions count toward the same 457(b) limit as contributions to the Commonwealth of Virginia 457(b) Deferred Compensation Plan (“DCP”). Combined contributions to both plans may not exceed the 457(b) limit.
Employees eligible for the age 50+ catch-up may defer an additional $6,500 to 403(b) and/or 457(b) plans in 2021.
No action is required to continue the current deferral elections in 2021. Employees who wish to change deferral elections may request changes at any time. See Tax Deferred Annuity and Deferred Compensation Plan for more information.
The 2021 limits apply to all 403(b) and 457(b) plans in which a person participates during 2021. If you participate in plans outside of VCU that fall under the same limits, you must ensure that your combined contributions to VCU plans and all like plans outside of VCU do not exceed the limits.
Signing up for benefits? Making changes? ALEX is here to help!
ALEX for VCU is the new interactive benefits counselor for faculty members and University and Academic Professionals. Have chat with ALEX about health coverage, flexible spending, retirement benefits, life insurance, and disability coverage by visiting www.myalex.com/vcu/2021-2022 from your computer, smartphone, or mobile device.
VCU benefits announcements will come only from VCU email addresses or social media accounts
VCU Human Resources is aware that some employees have received email solicitations or social media contacts that attempt to represent themselves as official communications from VCU about employee benefits. VCU announcements about employee benefits will come only from VCU email addresses or through official VCU social media channels. VCU's approved retirement plan service providers are Virginia Retirement System, TIAA, and Fidelity Investments. Communications from these approved retirement plan service providers will include their logos and references to specific programs in which VCU employees participate. Communications from other parties are not authorized by VCU.
Health benefits elections and changes
The state's Employee Direct system is currently unable to process health benefits elections and changes outside of Open Enrollment. Please use the current health benefits enrollment form (PDF version or DocuSign version) to submit changes or make elections.