Several of Duke's benefit programs require employees to enroll or make changes to their enrollment within a specified period of time. There are three different scenarios when employees are permitted to make changes to their benefits elections: (1) when the employee is hired or becomes newly eligible for benefits, (2) when the employee experiences certain changes to his or her family or employment circumstances (called a “qualifying life event”), and (3) during the annual open enrollment period. Enrollment in other benefits may occur throughout the year based upon eligibility.

Newly Eligible: 30 Days

New hires and newly eligible employees enroll in benefits within the first 30 days after eligibility begins. During this 30-day period, employees should review the health, dental, and vision insurance plans offered, then choose the plan and tier that best meet their needs.

Also, within 30 days of the eligibility date, staff should make decisions on supplemental life insurance, voluntary short-term disability insurance, and voluntary long-term disability insurance. After the 30-day time period, staff must provide evidence of insurability to enroll in these plans.

Qualifying Life Events: 30 days

If staff experience a qualifying life event, they may enroll or make changes to some of their Duke benefits within 30 days of the event. Any change must be consistent with the qualifying event; for example, you could add a new dependent to medical insurance coverage following the birth of your child. Qualifying events include such things as:

  • Marriage or divorce
  • Birth or adoption (or placement of adoption) of a child
  • Death of a covered dependent
  • Loss or gain of eligibility for insurance coverage for staff or a covered dependent (coverage must not be an individual policy)
  • Change in spouse's employment status
  • Change in health insurance eligibility due to a relocation of residence

If staff experience a qualifying event, they must notify Benefits at 684-5600 or by visiting the Human Resources office at 705 Broad Street and provide documentation within 30 days of the event to update benefit enrollments. Staff will need to present a copy of supporting documentation, such as a birth, marriage, or death certificate, or divorce decree.

Open Enrollment

All Duke staff who are eligible for benefits will have the opportunity to enroll or make changes in their medical, dental, vision and reimbursement account benefits during the annual open enrollment period. Changes made during the annual open enrollment period take effect January 1 of the upcoming year. Duke staff will be notified directly of an upcoming open enrollment period before it begins. Staff may enroll in many of Duke's other benefits at any time throughout the year, including the 403(b) retirement plan, supplemental life insurance, voluntary disability, personal accident insurance, and personal casualty insurance (renter's, automobile and/or homeowner's insurance).

For a complete listing of benefits offered by Duke, please see Duke Benefits.

BenefitNewly Eligible (within 30 days)Annual Open EnrollmentQualifying life Event (within 30 days)Anytime
Health Insurance (all plans)XXX 
Dental InsuranceXXX 
Vision InsuranceXXX 
Reimbursement AccountsXXX 
Personal Accident Insurance   X
Supplemental Life InsuranceX
Reduced underwriting guidelines if sign-up occurs within 30 days of employment
Personal Casualty Insurance   X
Tax-Deferred Retirement Savings (Hourly-Paid)   X
Once per pay period
Faculty/Staff Retirement Program (Monthly-salaried)   X
Once per pay period
Voluntary Short-term and Long-term Disability   X
Coverage does not require proof of good health if enroll within first 30 days of eligibility

NOTE: Some benefits that are paid for 100% by Duke do not appear on this chart, since participation is automatic and no changes are necessary.