Updated on March 27, 2014
For all options, see the Active State Employees forms section for the Insurance Enrollment and Change form and return to your GIC Coordinator.
Q) I am leaving state service; when does my GIC coverage end?
A) Your coverage ends at the end of the month following the month you end state service, provided that your premium for that month is paid.
Q) I am leaving state service, but I have fewer than ten years of full-time service (as determined by my retirement board). Therefore, I am not eligible for a state pension. What are my health and life insurance options?
A) Yes. If you are leaving state service for any reason other than termination for gross misconduct, you may continue your coverage with some limitations on time and/or benefit levels. Your options are as follows:
- Commonwealth Health Connector health coverage (contact the Health Connector Authority for information and enrollment: 1-877-623-6765 ):
Benefits: A choice of health insurance options with different benefits and prices. Depending on which plan you choose, your monthly premium for the Health Connector could be lower than the monthly premium for COBRA or conversion coverage. Unlike COBRA coverage, Health Connector coverage does not have a maximum coverage period. You can continue coverage as long as you pay your premiums on time.
Drawbacks: Benefits may not be as comprehensive as the coverage you had through the GIC. If you enroll in Health Connector coverage, you are waiving your right to elect health insurance under the GIC's COBRA or conversion options. This option is only available for Massachusetts residents.
- COBRA - health only. You have 60 days to elect COBRA coverage, but the coverage begins on the first day of the month after your coverage as an active employee ended. To avoid owing retroactive premiums, send in your COBRA application promptly to the GIC.
Benefits: Allows you to stay in the same health plan with the same benefits.
Drawbacks: You pay 100% of the premium, plus 2% for administration (no Commonwealth contribution). Maximum coverage period is 18 months.
- Convert to Non-Group health coverage with your current health plan (contact your health plan for the application):
Benefits: You can keep coverage indefinitely as long as you pay the premium.
Drawbacks: Benefits are almost always less comprehensive than GIC coverage.
- Life Insurance Portability - You may continue your basic life and/or optional life coverage (application to continue coverage will be mailed to your home from the life insurance carrier):
Benefit: Continue your life insurance at a competitive rate.
Drawback: Does not include health insurance.
- Convert to Non-Group life coverage with the current carrier (form available through life insurance carrier).
Benefit: Ability to continue life insurance coverage.
Drawback: Benefits almost always less than GIC plan coverage.
Q) I am leaving state service, but I am not retiring. I have ten or more years of full-time service (as determined by The State Board of Retirement or my retirement board) and I am eligible for a state pension. I am leaving my retirement monies in the State's retirement system. How can I continue my health and life coverage with the GIC?
A) You may elect Deferred Retirement coverage provided you keep your money in the state or other GIC-eligible retirement system. If you are getting health coverage elsewhere, the GIC suggests that you, at a minimum, keep life insurance paying 100% of the premium. At retirement, you may apply for GIC health coverage; the Commonwealth will contribute its premium contribution in force at the time you retire. If you are not getting health coverage elsewhere when you leave, you may keep your basic life and health insurance, paying 100% of the premiums until retirement.
If you decide not to leave your money in the state or other GIC-eligible retirement system, or if it is transferred to a retirement system not eligible for GIC benefits, your eligibility for GIC benefits as a Deferred Retiree ends. You may elect to continue your health and life coverage, with some limitations on time and/or benefit levels, in one of the following ways:
- Commonwealth Health Connector health insurance (Massachusetts residents)
- GIC COBRA health coverage only
- Convert to non-group health coverage with your current health plan
- Elect portability of your life insurance, or
- Convert to non-group life insurance with the current life insurance carrier.
Q) I am leaving state service and have twenty or more years of state service or I am age 55 or over and have ten or more years of state service. How can I continue my health and life coverage with the GIC?
A) If you retire after twenty or more years of state service (at any age) or ten or more years of state service at age 55 or over, you are eligible for health and life insurance coverage. See the Retirement section for additional information.
If you elect not to retire, the GIC recommends that you elect Deferred Retirement coverage (see ten or more years of state service).
Q) I am enrolled under the COBRA provision. How do I cancel my coverage?
A) Send a letter to the GIC requesting that your coverage be terminated. Include your name, address, and GIC ID number (usually your Social Security Number). Coverage will be terminated at the end of the month in which your COBRA premium is paid.
This information provided by the Group Insurance Commission.