Employee Eligibility

Regular full-time employees (for benefits purposes, .75 full-time equivalency and above) are eligible for the University health credit toward the cost of health plan coverage, receive 403(b) retirement savings plan matching contributions, life insurance coverage in an amount equal to 1x annual salary, Accidental Death & Dismemberment (AD&D) coverage in an amount equal to 1x annual salary, and long-term disability insurance (LTD) after one year of service. Regular full-time employees may also take advantage of a wide array of other great benefits, including dental insurance, vision insurance, supplemental life insurance and much more. Learn more about regular full-time eligibility. »

Temporary employees may be determined eligible for the Affordable Care Act (ACA) health care credit toward the University health plan. ACA eligibility requirements state that you must work 30 hours or more per week on average. STEPS and other temporary employess with a current FTE of .75 or greater in either one, or multiple assignments are eligible. Also, if you average more than 30 hours per week over your first 12 months of employment, or during the measurement period (April 1 - March 31), and you do not currently have a .75 FTE, you are eligible.

Regular and temporary part-time employees (with an assignment of .20 FTE or greater) may also participate in employee medical plans, but do not receive an employer credit toward the cost of health insurance coverage. Part-time employees may also take advantage of many other insurance offerings.

Dependent Eligibility for Benefits Coverage

Eligible dependents include individuals of the following relation to the employee or retiree:

  • spouse
  • dependent children up to age 26
  • mentally or physically disabled children of any age who were or became disabled before the age limit and who were already covered by your plan
  • adult sponsored dependent (an unrelated individual age 18 or older who has resided in the same household as the covered UK employee or retiree for at least one year). Note: Employees may choose to cover a spouse OR an adult sponsored dependent. Sponsored dependent eligibility details »
  • children (up to age 26) of an adult sponsored dependent Sponsored dependent eligibility details »

General Retirement Status Eligibility Guidelines

Employees may be considered University of Kentucky retirees in one of the following circumstances:

  • Retired at age 65 or older, with five or more years of consecutive years of service (see distinct guidelines below for subsidized health plan coverage)
  • Retired at less than 65 years of age (early retirement) while meeting the "Rule of 75",  which requires a combination of age and service to equal 75 with a minimum of 15 years of continuous regular full time service

Consider Date of Retirement Eligibility

Retirees at any age who meet the Rule of 75 and who were hired prior to January 1, 2006 are eligible to receive a UK credit toward the cost of health plan coverage and participate in other medical plans (dental, vision). Note: Premiums for retirees under age 65 vary based on date of retirement eligibility, as explained further below. 

Retirees at any age who meet the Rule of 75 and who were hired on or after January 1, 2006 may participate in a University retiree health care plan on an “access only” basis: Upon retirement, you may participate in a University retiree health care plan by paying the full cost of the group rate health premium for retirees. Retirees hired on or after 1/1/2006 may also participate in dental and vision plans. 

Medical Plan Eligibility For Retirees & Spouses

Eligible retirees and spouses have access to University health plan options, with UK subsidies toward the cost of health plan coverage when specific requirements are met.

Please note the following overall guidelines related to health plan coverage in retirement:

  • To receive a UK credit toward the cost of health plan coverage, you have been hired prior to January 1, 2006 and meet the Rule of 75 (age + years of service = 75, with 15 years of continuous service prior to retirement).
  • You must be enrolled in a university health plan at the time of retirement in order to participate in the health plan after retirement.
  • You and any eligible dependent(s) covered on your plan at the date of your retirement may remain on your current health plan (or equivalent for out of state residents.)
  • If, after retirement, you cancel your University health plan without utilizing your one-time deferral, you will not be eligible to re-enroll unless you take advantage of the one-time deferral option. The "deferral" allows you (and a spouse) to drop coverage and re-enroll one time, if you continue coverage under an employer-sponsored plan.

Retirees Age 65 and Over - Medicare Advantage plan

Eligible retirees (and spouses) age 65 and older may receive coverage under UK's Medicare Advantage health plan. For retirees, the Medicare Advantage plan is secondary (or supplemental) to federal Medicare insurance, which provides primary coverage

  • Retirees who meet the rule of 75, and who were hired prior to January 1, 2006, receive a UK credit toward the cost of retiree only coverage. Additional coverage levels (spouse, child(ren), family are also available. Review current Medicare Advantage rates. »
  • Retirees age 65 years or older with more than 5 years but less than 15 years of service are eligible to participate in the Medicare Advantage health plan at the full monthly rate (no UK credit toward cost of coverage). 
  • Any surviving spouse of a retiree (hired prior to January 1, 2006) who is covered under a UK health plan may receive one half of the single UK Medicare Advantage plan credit towards the cost of the health coverage. In order to be eligible for the surviving spouse credit, the retiree must have had coverage on his or her spouse at the time of death and the retiree must have been eligible to receive the credit. The credit will cease if the surviving spouse re-marries.

Early (less than age 65) Retiree Rate UK-HMO, UK-RHP, UK-EPO OR UK-PPO

  • Individuals retired or eligible to retire prior to July 1, 2007 receive a credit toward the cost of coverage and pay the published early retiree rate(s).
  • Individuals who become eligible to retire on or after July 1, 2007 (hired prior to January 1, 2006) pay a rate determined by age and years of service. Check rates and see details. » 

"Working Retiree" Health Plan Options: Special Rate on UK-HMO, UK-RHP, UK-PPO or UK-EPO 

Individuals at any age who have officially retired from the University are eligible for coverage under active employee plans (UK-HMO, UK-PPO, etc.) at the working retiree rate. Guidelines: 

  • UK retirees of any age returning to work for the University of Kentucky on a temporary or part-time basis for at least eight hours per week minimum, on average (.2 FTE*). Retirees with work assignments .19 FTE or less are not eligible for the working retiree rate
  • ​Working retirees may choose from the same plans as active employees (UK-HMO, UK-RHP, UK-PPO, UK-EPO) and pay the working retiree rate.
  • If a working retireemeets ACA eligibility requirements, the ACA credit will be applied to the University health plan.

Working retiree rates (working .20 FTE or greater)

HMO, RHP, PPO and Indemnity plans

Coverage Level Monthly cost UK pays Retiree pays
Retiree or spouse only $523 $495 $28
Retiree + child(ren) $783 $495 $288
Retiree + spouse $1,044 $495 $549
Retiree + family $1,307 $495 $812

EPO plan

Coverage Level Monthly cost UK pays Retiree pays
Retiree or spouse only $680 $495 $185
Retiree + child(ren) $1,018 $495 $523
Retiree + spouse $1,358 $495 $863
Retiree + family $1,700 $495 $1,205

*Note: 20% employment (.2 FTE) is generally defined as working 8 hours weekly or 7.5 hours weekly depending on whether the planned working time is based on a 40 or 37.5 hour week.