In recognition of how the current COVID-19 public health crisis has dramatically impacted the needs of many employees and their families, Washington State’s Health Care Authority (HCA) announced that employees who are currently enrolled in a Flexible Spending Arrangement (FSA) and/or the Dependent Care Assistant Program (DCAP) will have three opportunities this year – in March, June and September – to increase or decrease their 2021 contribution amounts.
Normally, employees can only make midyear changes to their FSA or DCAP amounts if they experience a Life Event (such as a marriage or the birth of a child), or in the case of DCAP changes, if they can provide proof of changes to their child care costs (such as changes in preschool rates). Employees will not need to provide proof of child care costs during these three opportunities. UW employees who wish to take advantage of this opportunity will be able to make their updates in Workday in September.
In the meantime, here are some answers to questions you or your staff or faculty may have about this uncommon event:
Do employees need to participate?
No. If employees currently enrolled in an FSA and/or the DCAP are happy with their current elections, no action is required; their current contribution elections will remain the same unless they submit changes in Workday.
Can employees enroll in an FSA or the DCAP during this opportunity?
No. Employees can only enroll in an FSA and/or the DCAP as part of Open Enrollment in November, or if they experience a qualifying Life Event.
How will employees know about this opportunity?
The Health Care Authority (HCA) emailed/mailed PEBB employees on February 18. The ISC will also email all eligible employees (those currently enrolled in an FSA and/or the DCAP) the week of February 22, and then again via Workday on March 1, June 1 and September 1 to let them know how to take advantage of that month’s opportunity to make changes to contribution amounts.
If employees made changes in March and/or June, can they make additional changes in September?
Yes. Eligible employees currently enrolled in an FSA and/or the DCAP can increase or decrease their contribution amounts in March, and then make subsequent changes again in June and/or September. Changes submitted in March go into effect on April 1, changes submitted in June go into effect on July 1 and changes submitted in September go into effect on October 1.