UNC 2020 New Hire Benefits Presentation Script


Hi and welcome to the University of North Carolina System’s comprehensive benefits overview!

From Western Carolina University and University of North Carolina at Asheville in the west to East Carolina University and Elizabeth City State University in the east to the 13 institutions in between – we’re glad you’re here.


Join us on this journey as we highlight benefits, wellness and financial resources including: Health, Prescription Drug, Dental, Vision, Flexible Spending Accounts, Cancer Insurance, Critical Illness, Group Life, Accident Insurance, Disability and Retirement Programs.

These programs are designed to allow you to tailor a benefits package that best meets the unique needs of you and your family.


Like the beautiful North Carolina Mountains-to-Sea Trail, we’re going to cover a lot of ground in this presentation. Think of this presentation as your benefits GPS, and we won’t let you get lost.

You’ll receive a lot of information that will help you make the best benefits decisions for you and your family. You can either take the entire tour of the UNC System’s benefits offerings, or you can skip to or revisit topics of interest by clicking on the chapter titles on the slides. Of course, we recommend that you go through the whole presentation the first time.

So, sit back, grab your field notes and some water as we map out the benefits available to you.


Now that you’re part of our team, let’s begin this journey together.

Before trekking along the 1,150 miles of the Mountains-to-Sea Trail, you would likely make a list of what to bring. And now that you’re a UNC System employee, you may want to make a list of what you need to do to make the most of your benefits.

First of all, you should review the materials that were provided by your manager. Then you should complete any tax forms, complete your direct deposit form and enroll in the benefits that you’ll learn about in this presentation.

Keep in mind that online enrollment for Health and NCFlex benefits must be made within 30 calendar days of your hire date, or within 60 calendar days for retirement programs. Detailed enrollment instructions can be found at the end of this presentation.

Don’t get caught on the trail unprepared– pay attention to the details.


Let’s find out who’s eligible for this adventure.
Permanent employees who work 30 or more hours per week are benefit eligible.

In addition, permanent part-time employees who work 20 to 29 hours per week are eligible for many benefit programs, but usually without employer contributions.


What about your family? You need to make sure they are covered on this excursion, too.

Your spouse is eligible for all benefit plans where dependent coverage is offered, as are any children, up to age 26. This includes any children for whom you, as the employee, have legal guardianship, including stepchildren.

Additionally, children over the age of 26 who are physically or mentally disabled, to the extent that they are incapable of earning a living, are also eligible for benefits.


The first stop on our adventure is Health Benefits. Health Benefits include medical and prescription drug coverage, as well as health and wellness resources.


The State Health Plan of North Carolina offers two health plans administered by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina so you can select which option works best for your situation.

The plans are:

  • The 70/30 Plan and

  • The 80/20 Plan.


Let’s review the features of each plan. We’ll start with the 70/30 Plan. Under this plan, you typically pay a higher co-pay, coinsurance and deductibles as compared to the 80/20 Plan.

Under both plans, in-network ACA preventive services are covered at 100% and in-network office visit copays are reduced if you visit the PCP listed on your ID card. ACA preventive medications are also covered at no cost.


The plans share some common features, such as you can use any medical provider you choose, but also have their own unique features.

When you use an in-network provider, your costs will be lower.

If you choose to use an out-of-network provider or facility, your deductibles, coinsurance and copays may be higher.


An important component of your medical plan is prescription drug coverage. Each of the two plans contains prescription drug coverage.


Let’s take a look how prescription coverage works. Under both plans, coverage is based on a multi-tier plan. Drugs are placed in tiers based on whether a drug is a generic, a preferred or non-preferred brand drug or a specialty drug. The amount you pay as either a copay or coinsurance depends on the tier. ACA preventive medications are covered at 100% under both plans.


To assist you in this journey, we’ll provide you with a variety of resources to ensure that you get the best value from your benefits programs.


When you visit www.shpnc.org and click on New Employees at the top of the page, you have access to a number of resources such as videos, guides and online tools.

Click the images on the screen to view the resources available to you.


The State Health Plan also offers tools and resources to help you live a healthier life. Some of the offerings include:

  • The Member Focus newsletter;

  • The Diabetes Resource Center; and

  • The Opioid Resource Center.

    To sign up for the State Health Plan Member newsletter, click the link on your screen.


So you have the right tools, but wouldn’t it help if you could also save some money for your trip? Sure it would!


By completing the tobacco attestation, you can earn a wellness premium credit that will reduce your monthly premium. (The wellness premium credit only applies to the employee-only premium.)

This chart shows how the credit is applied under both plan options.


And, you can also save money when you visit your PCP or a provider within your PCP’s practice. If you are enrolled in the 80/20 Plan, your copay will be reduced to $10. If you are enrolled in the 70/30 Plan, your copay will be reduced to $30.


Now that you have your tools and know how to save for this journey, let’s take a closer look at the monthly costs.

As you’re reviewing the rates, please note that health insurance premiums are deducted one month in advance of coverage. For example, the premiums that you pay in January pay for coverage in February. And, there is no pre-existing condition exclusion for coverage.

Because the rates are subject to change and dependent on the plan choice and wellness activities completed, we suggest you click “here” to see the monthly rates for health coverage.


It’s always a great idea to carry a few extras to make your journey a little easier. That’s why we’re making a few stops along the way, so you can choose what extras work best for you and your loved ones.


Some of the extras available through the NCFlex program include:

  • Dental;

  • Vision;

  • Flexible Spending Accounts;

  • Cancer Insurance;

  • Critical Illness Insurance;

  • TRICARE Supplement Plan

  • Group T erm Life Insurance;

  • Accident Insurance Plan; and

  • Accidental Death and Dismemberment Insurance.

    These voluntary programs provide a variety of plans to meet the needs of you and your family. You will pay the full cost of coverage through pre-taxed payroll deductions.

    Now, let’s learn about these benefit programs.


While on the Mountain to Sea Trail, you’ll pass by three lighthouses, including the nation’s tallest. All NCFlex’s dental plan options can keep the light shining in your smile for a long time.


Dental coverage is provided through MetLife Dental with three plan options.

  • As the names suggest, the High Option provides the highest level of benefits with the highest premium and the Low Option offers the lowest level of benefits with the lowest premium. The Classic Option falls in between.

  • Both the High Option and Classic Option include orthodontia for children under 19.

  • The Low Option does not include orthodontia and it does not cover major services such as crowns,

    dentures or bridges.

    Under all plan options:

  • You can visit any provider (however you can lower your costs if you visit a network dentist);

  • You are responsible for deductibles; and

  • You or your dentist may file claims.


In order to navigate your journey on the trail, your vision must be keen.


You have your choice between three vision coverage options, all provided through EyeMed Vision Care.

The three options available to you are the:

  • Core Wellness Plan, which is available at no cost for employees. However, you must enroll for coverage to be effective.

  • And, with the other two options — the Basic Plan and the Enhanced Plan — employees pay the full cost for coverage on a pre-tax basis.

    Under all options, you can visit any provider. However, you may pay lower expenses when using an in- network EyeMed provider.


Not all of the Mountain to Sea Trail is on land. In fact, it includes three ferry rides! So, grab your lifejacket, you might need it for this trip.


Having a lifejacket while traveling on water is important because it provides you with safety and security. Think of your flexible spending accounts as your lifejacket — providing you with financial security.

NCFlex offers you two different flexible spending account options:

  • The Health Care Flexible Spending Account; and

  • The Dependent Day Care Flexible Spending Account.


The Health Care Flexible Spending Account coverage is provided through P and A Group. With this coverage, you are able to set aside money through pre-tax contributions to pay for eligible out-of- pocket medical, dental and vision expenses such as copays and coinsurance.

You get to decide the amount you need for financial security by contributing between $120 to $2,700. What’s more, you get a convenience or debit card when you create your account to pay for your eligible expenses.

As a reminder, if you have a family member who has a Health Savings Account, you can’t use your Flexible Spending Account for expenses for that family member. Have your family member talk to their HSA vendor if they have questions about this.


The other flexible spending account that can provide you with financial security is the Dependent Day Care Flexible Spending Account.

Like the Health Care Flexible Spending Account, you also set aside money through pre-tax contributions. With this account, the money is used to pay for eligible child care and adult day care expenses so you and your spouse, if applicable, can work or attend school full-time.

You have the option to contribute between $120 to $5,000 per household per year.

When you enroll, you will receive a convenience or debit card to pay for eligible dependent care expenses, up to the amount available in your account.

If you are also enrolled in the Health Care Flexible Spending Account, you will use the same card to pay for
expenses for both spending accounts.


There is one catch when you contribute to either Flexible Spending Account— you must use it, or you lose it.

Under the Health Care Flexible Spending Account…

  • Expenses can be incurred between January 1st and December 31st, 2020.

  • You may rollover up to $500 of unused funds into 2021.

  • However, any unused funds greater than $500 will be forfeited.

  • You have until April 30th, 2021 to submit expenses for reimbursement.

    Under the Dependent Care Flexible Spending Account…

  • Expenses can be incurred between January 1st, 2020 and March 15th, 2021.

  • You have until April 30th, 2021 to submit expenses for reimbursement.

  • You will forfeit any money remaining in your account after the deadline to submit eligible claims which is April 30th, 2021.


You’ll probably need to have a first-aid kit handy for any potential bumps and bruises along the trail.


The UNC System provides a variety of plans to aide you on your journey. These include Cancer and Critical Illness Insurance provided through Allstate Benefits.

Cancer Insurance pays benefits for cancer-related expenses and Critical Illness Insurance pays a lump sump benefit in the event of certain health conditions.


TRICARE is the health benefit program for the military community.

If you currently have TRICARE Standard/Extra, Prime, or TRS benefits offered through the Military Community, you may be eligible for the TRICARE Supplement plan, which pays a benefit for costs not covered by TRICARE.

TRICARE and the TRICARE Supplement Plan work together to maximize your benefits and minimize your out-of-pocket expenses. Features of the TRICARE Supplement Plan include:

  • No pre-existing condition limitation

  • Flexibility and freedom to choose your own TRICARE authorized civilian providers

  • No referral or authorization required


We also have voluntary Group Term Life Insurance through VOYA. You can choose to cover yourself, your spouse and your child or children.

Your coverage is limited to five times your base annual earning, and spousal coverage cannot exceed 100% of your elected amount. As a reminder, if you choose coverage over two hundred thousand dollars, you will be subject to Evidence of Insurability.


Have you ever dislocated a joint or gotten a deep cut? How about something more severe, like a concussion or broken bone? The Accident Plan, which is administered by VOYA Financial, helps relieve some of the financial stress that results from an accidental injury.

The Accident Plan pays benefits for specific injuries and events resulting from a covered accident. The benefit amount depends on the type of injury and care received. You have the option to elect coverage to meet the needs of you, your spouse, and/or children. Coverage also includes a sport accident benefit which provides additional benefits if your accident occurs while participating in an organized sporting activity as defined by the plan.


Accidents can happen, so having additional coverage may help you in the long run.

Core Accidental Death and Dismemberment, or AD&D, and Voluntary AD&D Insurance are provided through VOYA. The State of North Carolina pays the full cost of coverage for Core AD&D Insurance as long as you enroll for coverage. And, if you choose, you can select even more protection by enrolling in Voluntary AD&D Insurance.


Don’t forget, if you want to reap the benefits of the NCFLEX programs, you have 30 days to enroll for coverage.

Click “here” to see the monthly rates for coverage available under the NCFLEX programs.


When life gets stormy, it’s important for you to have shelter and a plan so you’re protected.


To safeguard you and your family from life’s storms, we have a couple of options that offer protection. These programs are designed to provide you and/or your family with financial protection in the event of your death, disability or long-term illness. And, some are offered at no cost to you!


Up first are Short-Term and Long-Term Disability Insurance. Disability benefits are available to eligible employees who become continuously unable to perform the duties of their usual occupation due to a mental or physical incapacity while actively employed with the UNC System.

These coverages are provided under the Disability Income Plan of North Carolina. Both plans are provided to eligible employees at no cost.

Short-Term Disability Insurance pays 50% of your base compensation up to $3,000 per month for up to 365 days (the 60-day waiting period is included within the 365 days).

Long-Term Disability Insurance pays 65% of your base compensation up to $3,900 per month for as long as you remain permanently disabled, until you’re eligible for unreduced service retirement.


The UNC System also offers two Supplemental Disability Plans through The Standard for employees enrolled in the ORP and through Lincoln Financial for employees enrolled in TSERS.

These plans can help fills gaps in the state’s disability coverage. Since this is a voluntary benefit, you will pay the full cost of coverage after tax.


Navigating retirement options can make you feel lost in the woods, but the UNC System works with you so you won’t feel left out in the dark. The UNC System offers a choice between two mandatory retirement programs, as well as several voluntary supplemental retirement plans.


Your participation in a retirement program is mandatory. You may choose between:

  • The North Carolina Teachers’ and State Employees’ Retirement System, a defined benefit plan; or

  • The UNC Optional Retirement Prog
    ram, a defined contribution plan.

    It’s important to understand both options because once you choose your plan, it cannot be changed; it is irrevocable. Also, please notify the benefits office before making your retirement election if you transfer from another state agency or university, or if you have ever previously been employed by the State and/or the UNC System because this may impact your eligibility for those plans.

    And while we’ll discuss both retirement plans, they are complex. So, we recommend that you get more information by using the resources provided in this section.


The North Carolina Teachers’ and State Employees’ Retirement System, or TSERS, is a defined benefit plan in which the state controls the investments in this plan. You must contribute 6 percent of your pay on a pre-tax basis, and the UNC System also contributes to the plan on your behalf.

The benefit you receive is based on a formula which includes your age, final compensation and service.


The UNC Optional Retirement Program, or the ORP, is a defined contribution plan where you control your investments. Like the other retirement plan, you must contribute 6 percent of your pay on a pre- tax basis. The UNC System contributes 6.84%. Where this plan differs is you determine how your money is invested and the amount you receive is based on investment performance.

With this plan, you get to choose from two investment providers — either Fidelity or TIAA . It would be wise to consult with a financial or tax advisor before selecting either plan.


And finally, the UNC System provides you with supplemental retirement plans to complement the mandatory options. These plans allow you to put money away on a pre-tax basis for your retirement in addition to the 6 percent that you contribute to TSERS or the ORP.

These plans also provide you with the flexibility to change the amount you contribute or stop participation at any time. The supplemental retirement plans include:

  • The UNC System 403(b) plan and the UNC System 457(b) Plan, both administered through Fidelity and TIAA and sponsored by the UNC System;

  • A 401(k) plan and a 457 Plan both administered through Prudential and sponsored by the State of North Carolina.

    You may elect to participate in the supplemental retirement plans at the same time; however, the IRS limits the amount you can contribute.


Need more information on retirement? We have plenty of resources to guide you in the right direction.


Here are guides that can help you choose your retirement benefit. Click on each image to open the document.


More help is on the way. Click the “Play” button to watch a brief video about your retirement options.


We told you we wouldn’t leave you out in the dark! Here are two more resources to assist you in making a decision between TSERS and the ORP. Click on either image to open the link to that tool.


All UNC System retirement program participants can take advantage of resources offered by CAPTRUST, the UNC System’s investment advisor.

CAPTRUST provides access to Retirement Counselors, webinars, education tools and resources and more – for both TSERS and ORP participants.

CAPTRUST can help you:

  • Choose between enrolling in TSERS or ORP

  • Select the retirement plan fund options best suited for you, and

  • Plan for retirement.


CAPTRUST provides advice no matter what stage you are in your career.

  • If you are in the early stage of your career, CAPTRUST can assist you with enrollment, recommendations on investing, determining the appropriate savings amounts, addressing budgeting questions and the importance of emergency savings.

  • If you are in the middle stage of your career, CAPTRUST can assist you with determining the appropriate savings amounts, recommending investments, saving for life events, reviewing of college savings plans, developing a plan to protect family financial needs, as well as measuring progress toward saving for retirement goals.

  • If you are in the later stage of your career, CAPTRUST can review and recommend investment strategies, saving rates and opportunities, Social Security Options, how to create more income, consideration of consolidating accounts, as well as steps for retirement preparation

    When you call CAPTRUST, a retirement counselor will discuss your individual situation and goals. The result of your discussion is a personalized retirement blueprint that provides an action plan for you to follow to achieve your retirement goals.


Visit www.captrustadvice.com to:

  • Schedule an appointment via the online scheduling tool. You can also call the CAPTRUST Advice Desk at 800.967.9948

  • View upcoming webinars

  • Use calculators

  • Listen to educational recordings

  • Access pertinent financial information such as financial news articles and quarterly plan newsletters


The UNC System works with you so you can take vacation, sick and leave whenever you need it on your journey.


The types of leave available to employees are: Civil, Community Service, Education, Family and Medical, Family Illness, Faculty Serious, Voluntary Shared, Military, Vacation, Sick, Workers’ Compensation and Paid Parental Leave. Civil leave is generally used for jury duty.


The Family & Medical Leave Act was created to balance the demands of the workplace with the needs of employees and their families. This policy provides a mechanism for employees to access, and the UNC System to administer, the benefits made available by this legislation.

Under this policy, employees may use paid leave, leave without pay, or donated voluntary shared leave (for approved recipients only) for absences from work due to childbirth, adoption or foster care placement, or a serious health condition of a
n employee or an employee’s spouse, child or parent. An employee’s job and benefits are protected while an employee takes leave under this policy, whether taken as vacation leave, sick leave, voluntary shared leave, leave without pay or any combination.

In addition, employees have access to Family Illness Leave, which provides up to 52 weeks of unpaid leave in a five-year period as well as Voluntary Shared Leave, in which donated vacation, bonus or sick leave from co-workers can be used in a period of a serious health condition.

Paid Parental Leave provides employees with up to eight weeks of paid leave after the birth or adoption of a child — four weeks for recuperation for the birth parent and 4 weeks for bonding for both birth and non-birth parents.

For more information about leaves, contact your institution’s Human Resources or Benefits Office.


Don’t lose your footing! When walking on the trail, you’ll hit some uneven terrain. However the UNC System offers a variety of programs focused balancing the responsibilities of work and personal life so you don’t miss a step.


As part of our on-going commitment to our employees, the programs we offer include: • Educational

  • Employee Assistance

  • Flexible Work Arrangements

  • Rewards & Recognition


The UNC System offers the tuition waiver program allowing eligible employees to have tuition waived for three courses per academic year at any of the 17 constituent institutions of the UNC system. Participation is voluntary, courses are to be taken on the employee’s time, and may be taken for career development or for personal interest.

The educational assistance program is for employees who take classes through any accredited school or program.

The College Foundation of NC allows you to begin saving money for college for you or anyone else you’d like.

For additional information on the educational programs available and the requirements, please refer to the Benefits section of the Human Resources website.


If you’re going hiking on the Mountains to Sea Trail, you’ll probably need to make a list of things to take with you. So grab your notes, and let’s iron out the details of your trip.


Here are a few things you’ll need to know before you begin:

  • Online enrollment for Health and NCFlex benefits must be made within 30 calendar days of your hire date.

  • Enrollment forms for any University-sponsored benefit you elect must be returned to your institution’s Benefits Office within 30 calendar days of your hire date except for supplemental disability which is 60 calendar days.


  • If you enroll for the ORP, your election forms must be returned to your institution’s Benefits Office no later than 60 days of your date of hire. If you do not elect the ORP within 60 days, you will be defaulted to TSERS. We recommend enrolling within 30 calendar days from your date of hire since contributions are deducted retroactive to your hire date.

  • If you choose TSERS, institutions may have additional enrollment requirements, so pay close attention to all enrollment instructions.

  • Be sure to follow the instructions you are provided and enroll on a timely basis. If you delay any of your benefit elections, you may incur “retroactive” deductions to cover the cost of your elected benefit coverages.


Here’s how to enroll for Health and NCFlex Benefits. Note: all institutions have single sign-on for online enrollment through eBenefits.

  • Refer to your institution-specific enrollment instructions to access eBenefits.

  • Select “Get Started” on the home page and follow the prompts. Please note if you are enrolling a dependent in health coverage, dependent verification documentation is required for all dependents, including a spouse. Visit shpnc.org or contact your benefits office for details regarding required documentation. You will also need to provide your dependent’s Social Security number.

  • After you have made your choices, and they are displayed for you to review and print, you MUST scroll down to the bottom and click “Save Changes” or your choices will not be recorded! Don’t overlook this critical step!

  • Print a copy of your Benefit Summary before logging out.
    Are you following along? Great! Now, let’s find out how to enroll in the other UNC System programs.


There are two ways to enroll for income protection programs, depending on what you choose. Click the corresponding link on the screen to enroll.


If you’re enrolling in the ORP, your institution may require you to complete an election form indicating the ORP as your retirement plan election. In addition, you must complete the forms listed on the screen.

Your ORP contributions will be deducted retroactive to your hire date.

Don’t forget, if you don’t enroll in the ORP within sixty days of your date of hire, you will automatically be enrolled in TSERS.


You will automatically be defaulted into TSERS if you do not enroll in the ORP within 60 days of your hire date. Your institution may also require you to complete an election form indicating TSERS as your retirement plan election.

You must also designate a beneficiary by completing the appropriate forms available by clicking on the URL listed on the screen.

Your TSERS contributions are deducted retroactive to your hire date.


To enroll in one of the supplemental retirement plans, visit the corresponding links on your screen. In some cases, the institutions have their own forms for these supplemental plans which are not found on the URLs listed above. Please check with your institution’s HR representative if you are thinking of enrolling in one of these plans.


When will my coverage become effective?


Review this chart to see when you’re covered.


You can make changes to your benefits during enrollment or if you experience a qualifying life event such as:

  • Marriage;

  • Divorce;

  • Birth or adoption of a child;

  • Death of a spouse or dependent; or

  • Gain or lose access to other coverage.

    Changes are made using the same process as when you enrolled – either online or through paper election forms.

    Don’t let time pass you by! You typically have 30 days from the day you experience the qualified life event in order to change your benefits. If you miss the deadline, you will have to wait until the next enrollment period.

    Please note if you are enrolling a dependent in health coverage, dependent verification documentation is required for all dependents, including your spouse. You are able to upload these documents in eBenefits, the State Health Plan’s enrollment system.


The UNC System is here to support you through every step in your journey.


While this training is coming to an end, that doesn’t mean your journey is over. If you ever find yourself lost, use this training as your compass and personal health, wellness and financial GPS. You can always come back to review the chapters, in any order.

And, for more information about the benefits provided by the UNC System, click the links on your screen. You can also check your institution’s website for additional details and HR and Benefit Office contact information.


This presentation serves as a general overview of the benefits provided by the UNC system. Please note that there may be specific policies, programs or benefits offered by each university.

We encourage you to review all orientation materials and institution-based HR/benefits websites for additional information.


Congratulations! You’ve made it to the end of the trail. Throughout this journey, we’ve highlighted the resources available to help you tailor a benefits package that best meets the needs of you and your family. Don’t forget, if you have need to revisit a topic, simply click on the chapter titles on the slides.

Welcome to the UNC System family!