Insurance Options while on Leave of Absence without Pay (LWOP)

Absence for less than one month: If you will be on leave for less than one calendar month, please disregard this information as your insurance premiums will continue to be deducted from your monthly paycheck.

Absence for a month or longer: If you will be on leave of absence without pay (LWOP) for an entire calendar month or longer, you will receive communication from HR explaining your insurance options for the duration of your leave.

Insurance tips while on LWOP:

  • You can view your current coverage on the Review My Insurance Benefits webpage.
  • HR will send a notice that outlines the cost of insurance while on LWOP.
  • The LWOP notice will provide coverage continuation information as follows:
    • Continuation of ALL insurance coverage.
    • Suspend ALL insurance coverage.
    • You will not have any insurance coverage until you return to work in a benefits eligible position and submit an Insurance Enrollment / Change Application to the HR Service Center (HRSC) within 31 days of your return to work in a benefits eligible position.
    • Combination of continuing some benefits and suspending others.
  • Leave of Absence concurrently used with FMLA. Reminder: FMLA provides premium sharing for the duration of FMLA. Premium sharing eligibility ends with the FMLA award.
  • Leave of Absence ineligible for FMLA-No premium sharing.
  • You must make your selection and return the form to the HR Service Center (HRSC) within 15 days of the date on the notice. Failure to return the form may result in cancelation of coverage, including medical coverage.

Faculty Employees: Please contact the Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost at (512) 471-4363 for additional guidelines that pertain to your leave status.

Premium Billing while on LWOP

If you elect to maintain insurance while on LWOP, bills are generated through the What I Owe website. Payment for each month is due by the first of the month. The preferred method of payment is to use the What I Owe online payment system. Payment may also be made by check or money order payable to The University of Texas at Austin. Please include your UT EID on the check or money order. Failure to pay by the first of the month may result in cancellation of insurance coverage.

*Once a bill has appeared in the What I Owe page, you may pay it in the following ways*

What I Owe

Credit Card

  • Pay on the Web using your credit card or electronic file transfers. Go to the What I Owe page and log in with your UT EID and password. *Only MasterCard, Discover and AMEX are accepted. Credit card payments are not accepted by phone. Must include member EID.

Check or Money Order

  • Make payments payable to: The University of Texas at Austin
  • Include you UT EID (located on the insurance bill next to your name)
  • Write "Employee Insurance" on the check or money order
  • Mail payments to: The University of Texas at Austin, P.O. Box 13177, Austin, TX 78711
Contact Information

For billing or payment questions, contact Payroll Services at 512-471-5271 or go to the Payroll Services website. Lobby hours are Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Important Reminders for Benefits during LWOP

  • Leave Accruals: You may not use any time accrued while on leave of absence until you return to work in a benefits eligible position.
  • Re-enrollment for Benefits: To reinstate benefits upon the return to benefits eligible employment, you must complete and submit Insurance Enrollment / Change Application to the HR Service Center (HRSC) within 31 days of your return to work date.
  • Summer months: If you are employed on the basis of an academic year (September-May) and your LWOP is during the spring semester, your LWOP status will continue through the summer months.
  • Mandatory Retirement Programs: Employer and employee contributions to your Teacher Retirement System (TRS), or Optional Retirement Program (ORP) will stop with your last paycheck. Contributions will resume when you return to work to a benefits eligible position. You will not receive service credit towards vesting for any month in which no contribution is received.
  • Termination of Employment: Coverage maintained while on LWOP will end on the last day of the month in which you separate from employment. To continue benefits post-employment, you may continue the medical, dental and/or vision coverage through COBRA. You must request the COBRA application forms within 60 days of your insurance termination date. The COBRA Application Request form and more information about COBRA is available online.

UT Flex Medical Reimbursement Account during LWOP

Your contributions will stop as of the last day of the month in which your monthly contribution was made. Contributions will resume the date you return to active work status.

  • You will be required to continue to make contributions to your UT FLEX Medical account while on LWOP if your reimbursements have already exceeded the amount you contributed at the time when you go on LWOP.
  • Contributions will be recalculated upon your return to work in a benefits eligible position so that your total annual election is deposited to your account by the end of the plan year.
  • You can only be reimbursed for expenses incurred during your LWOP by continuing to make contributions to the UT FLEX Medical program. An expense is "incurred" when the treatment or service is received, not when the bill is received or paid.
  • If you return to work from LWOP and wish to participate in UT FLEX Medical you must submit forms to re-enroll within 31 days of returning to work.

UT Flex Dependent Care Reimbursement Account during LWOP

You are not eligible to continue the UT Flex Dependent Care while on LWOP. Your payroll contributions to this account will resume once you return to work in a benefit eligible position.

  • Contributions will be recalculated upon your return to work in a benefits eligible position so that your total annual election is deposited to your account by the end of the plan year.
  • If you return to work from LWOP and wish to participate in UT Flex Dependent Care, you must submit forms to re-enroll within 31 days of returning to work.

Change of Status Event

If you experience a Change of Status event while on LWOP that impacts your insurance coverage, you have 31 days from the date of the event to submit required forms and documentation to the HRSC. Please visit the Change of Status Events webpage for more information.

How to reinstate benefits following LWOP

All employees who return to work in a benefit eligible position must submit insurance forms to the HRSC within 31 days of returning to work to re-enroll or change your insurance and/or UT Flex Medical coverage.

If you do not submit forms within 31 days of your return to work in a benefits eligible position, your next opportunity to add or make changes to coverage will be the next Annual Enrollment period.

Evidence of Insurability (EOI) may be required at that time.