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Employers

Employer Bulletin

State Agencies
Vol. 18, State F
December 7, 2001

Sick Leave Credits Law Change

Under a new law provision, retirees receiving a Wisconsin Retirement System (WRS) annuity or surviving insured dependents may elect to delay use of (escrow) or initiate use of (unescrow) sick leave credits annually. The provision is effective immediately. The Department of Employee Trust Funds (ETF) sent eligible annuitants and surviving insured dependents a memo explaining the new law and included a Sick Leave Escrow Application – WRS State Annuitant Or Surviving Insured Dependent form, ET-4343.

The new sick leave provision allows annuitants or surviving insured dependents to escrow their sick leave credits, providing they can certify they have other health insurance coverage that is comparable to the State of Wisconsin Employees Group Health Insurance Program. To take this action, the annuitant or surviving insured dependent must complete the Sick Leave Escrow Application – WRS State Annuitant Or Surviving Insured Dependent form (ET-4343). Comparable coverage means a plan with hospital and medical benefits substantially equivalent to the state's Standard Plan. Eligible annuitants or surviving insured dependents may escrow only once during a calendar year. The sick leave account balance will then be escrowed (banked) on the first of the month following the date the Sick Leave Escrow Application – WRS State Annuitant Or Surviving Insured Dependent form (ET-4343) is received by ETF. Health insurance premiums will not be deducted from the sick leave account while it is escrowed.

Requirements for re-enrolling in the state plan remain the same through September 2002. Annuitants or surviving insured dependents who wish to re-enroll and activate their sick leave credits (unescrow) for premium payment must contact the self-service telephone line toll-free at 1-877-383-1888 or (608) 266-2323 (local Madison) to request the:

  • Annuitant It's Your Choice booklet (ET-2108),
  • Group Health Insurance Application (ET-2301),
  • Sick Leave Re-enrollment Application (ET-4317), and
  • Medicare Eligibility Statement (ET-4307), if eligible for Medicare.

Coverage will be effective on the first day of the third month after receipt of a properly completed re-enrollment application.

Starting October 2002, ETF will offer an annual opportunity for re-enrollment into the state plan. Annuitants and surviving insured dependents can re-enroll in the state plan and activate their sick leave credits from escrow. This re-enrollment period will coincide with the annual Dual-Choice Enrollment period for coverage effective January 1 of the following year or the first of the month in the following year that the participant selects.

If annuitants or surviving insured dependents wish to terminate their coverage through the State of Wisconsin Employees Group Health Insurance Program and escrow their remaining sick leave credits, they must respond to the memo noted above by submitting the ET-4343 form - they must have comparable health insurance coverage in place.

Annuitants or surviving insured dependents with questions about the change in law should call ETF toll-free at 1-877-533-5020 or (608) 266-3582 (local Madison). Employers with questions about this new provision may contact the Employer Communication Center at (608) 264-7900.

 

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