There are certain times throughout the year when you may enroll in health and supplemental benefits, or change your coverage.

Open Enrollment

Group of employees

The 2023 health benefits open enrollment period is September 26 - October 21, 2022. This is your opportunity to change health plans, change from family to single coverage, enroll if you had previously deferred coverage, cancel coverage for yourself or an adult dependent child, and more. You should review important changes for the 2023 plan year, and confirm your health plan network and service area, as well as plan design options. You should also consider dental and other insurance options to supplement your coverage. 

Active state employees: You must enroll each year in Pre-Tax Savings Accounts, such as flexible spending accounts for health care, dependent day care, health savings accounts, and parking and transit benefits.

Open enrollment is available to all who are eligible under the State of Wisconsin Group Health Insurance Program. This includes employees, retirees, currently insured COBRA continuants, surviving spouses, and dependents. Changes in coverage become effective January 1, 2023.

View the Open Enrollment Quick Reference

New Employee

If you are electing health insurance coverage, you must enroll within 30 days of your date of hire (in an eligible position), or first eligible appointment. You can choose for your coverage to be effective on either:

  • The first of the month on or following your hire date, or
  • The date you are eligible for an employer contribution

Check with your payroll or benefits office to find out when your employer contribution begins. If you choose to start your coverage before you receive employer contributions, you will pay the full premium.

UW graduate assistants and WRS employees: If this is not your first eligible appointment, you may still be eligible for the initial 30-day enrollment period if you have a 30-day employment break between appointments.

Life Change Event

Have you recently had a baby? Gotten married? Divorced? Moved? Throughout the year you may experience life events that allow you to change your benefits outside of the annual open enrollment period.

The life events guide explains which events allow you to make changes, deadlines, and required documentation.

View the Life Events Guide


When you retire, your health plan (if you are enrolled) will automatically continue in most circumstances. If you terminate employment after 20 years of creditable service but are not eligible for an immediate annuity, you may continue your coverage by filing a Continuation-Conversion Notice (ET-2311) form within 90 days of your termination of employment.

To continue coverage in supplemental benefits offered by ETF, you must return a continuation form directly to the insurance vendor. See the Enroll or Make Changes to Dental, Vision, and Accident Plan page for more information.


If you are eligible for Medicare, then you and your Medicare-eligible dependents must be enrolled in the hospital (Part A) and medical (Part B) portions of Medicare at the time of your retirement, as soon as you turn age 65, or have another Medicare enrollment opportunity. You will then automatically be enrolled in the prescription drug (Part D), Navitus MedicareRx plan, which is offered by Navitus.

Because all health plans offered by ETF have coverage options that coordinate with Medicare, you will remain covered by your health plan even after you enroll in Medicare.

Please contact ETF if you do not receive the required Medicare Eligibility Statement (ET-4307) at least one month before your 65th birthday, or if you have been on Social Security disability for 24 months.