If you are the family member of a UW System employee who has recently passed away, contact the employee’s institution’s benefits contact immediately for information about how to continue benefits and apply for any death benefits available.

Review the information below for details specific to each plan. Visit the Forms & Resources web page for plan applications, forms, and brochures.

If family coverage was in force at time of death, employer premium contributions for health insurance for the employee and insured family members end at the end of the month in which the employee passes away. Coverage for covered dependents automatically continues at the full premium rate (no employer contribution).

Contact the Department of Employee Trust Funds at (877) 533-5020 for information regarding how the premium will be collected.

  • If family coverage was in force and employee was vested in the Wisconsin Retirement System at the time of death, unused sick leave credits can be used to pay the monthly premium, or the credits can be escrowed (saved) for future use. See the Sick Leave Credit Conversion Program brochure for details.
  • Surviving family members may voluntarily terminate coverage by providing written notification to Department of Employee Trust Funds (ETF). Coverage will end on the last day of the month in which ETF receives written notification to end coverage.

Any premiums paid for coverage months following the date of death will be refunded.

If family members were covered at the time of the employee’s death, coverage ends at the end of the month in which the employee passed away. UW-Shared Services, Service Operations will send a continuation notice to the employee’s family. The family then has 60 days from the date of the continuation notice to elect continuation coverage. If the family does not receive the continuation notice timely, they should contact UW-Shared Services, Service Operations at serviceoperations@uwss.wisconsin.edu or (888) 298-0141 (7:45-4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday).

Coverage for a spouse and/or children may continue for up to 36 months or until they no longer meet the eligibility requirements of the plan, whichever occurs first.

Any premiums paid for coverage months following the date of death will be refunded.

If family members were covered at the time of the employee’s death, coverage ends at the end of the month in which the employee passed away. UW-Shared Services, Service Operations will send a continuation notice to the employee’s family. The family then has 60 days from the date of the continuation notice to elect continuation coverage. If the family does not receive the continuation notice timely, they should contact UW-Shared Services, Service Operations at serviceoperations@uwss.wisconsin.edu or (888) 298-0141 (7:45-4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday).

Coverage for a spouse and/or children may continue for up to 36 months or until they no longer meet the eligibility requirements of the plan, whichever occurs first.

Any premiums paid for coverage months following the date of death will be refunded.

Survivors must submit a Death Benefit Information Request Form (ET-7301) to the Department of Employee Trust Funds (ETF) to report the death. Survivors may also call ETF at 1-877-533-5020 to report the death. ETF will notify Securian (State Group Life Insurance Plan carrier), who will send a claim form to the beneficiary. A Notice of Death (ET-6301) will also need to be completed and submitted to Securian.

If Spouse and Dependent coverage was in force at the time of the employee’s death, coverage for spouse and dependents ends 90 days after the date of death (no premium due during this period).

Surviving family members may convert Spouse and Dependent coverage to an individual life insurance policy by submitting a conversion application and first premium directly to Securian within 90 days from the date of death (each family member must convert coverage separately). Surviving family members can contact UW-Shared Services, Service Operations at serviceoperations@uwss.wisconsin.edu or (888) 298-0141 (7:45-4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday) for a conversion application.

Any premiums paid for coverage months following the date of death will be refunded.

Survivors must contact the employee’s institution's benefits contact to report the death. The Individual & Family Life Insurance Plan carrier (Securian) will send a claim form to the beneficiary.

If Spouse and/or Children coverage was in force at the time of the employee’s death, coverage for spouse and/or children ends at the end of the month in which the employee passed away.

Surviving family members may convert Spouse and Dependent coverage to an individual life insurance policy by submitting a conversion application and first premium directly to Securian within 31 days from the date of death (each family member must convert coverage separately). Surviving family members can contact UW-Shared Services, Service Operations at serviceoperations@uwss.wisconsin.edu or (888) 298-0141 (7:45-4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday) for a conversion application.

Any premiums paid for coverage months following the date of death will be refunded.

Survivors should contact the employee’s institution's benefits contact to report the death. The UW Employees, Inc. Life Insurance Plan carrier (Securian) will send a claim form to the beneficiary. Any premiums paid for coverage months following the date of death will be refunded.

Survivors must contact the employee's institution's benefits contact to report the death. The University Insurance Association Life Insurance Plan carrier (Securian) will send a claim form to the beneficiary.

If the death was accidental, contact the Accidental Death & Dismemberment Plan carrier (Zurich American Insurance Company) at (866) 841-4771 to report the death and request a claim form. Zurich must receive the claim form within 90 days of death.

If family coverage was in force at the time of the employee’s death, covered family members have 60 days from the date of death to convert coverage to an individual policy. Each family member must convert coverage separately. Family members may convert coverage by contacting Zurich American Insurance Company at 1-800-834-1959 (reference UW System Policy # GTU-8364005). Family members can also contact UW-Shared Services, Service Operations at serviceoperations@uwss.wisconsin.edu or (888) 298-0141 (7:45-4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday) for a conversion application.

Any premiums paid for coverage months following the date of death will be refunded.

If family members were covered at the time of the employee’s death, coverage ends at the end of the month in which the employee passed away. UW-Shared Services, Service Operations will send a continuation notice to the employee’s family. The family then has 60 days from the date of the continuation notice to elect continuation coverage. If the family does not receive the continuation notice timely, they may contact UW-Shared Services, Service Operations at serviceoperations@uwss.wisconsin.edu or (888) 298-0141 (7:45-4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday).

Coverage for a spouse and/or children may continue for up to 36 months or until they no longer meet the eligibility requirements of the plan, whichever occurs first.

Any premiums paid for coverage months following the date of death will be refunded.

Coverage ends on the employee’s date of death. Any premiums paid for coverage months following the date of death will be refunded.

Funds remaining in the employee’s Health Care, Dependent Day Care or Limited Purpose FSA is accessible after death for expenses incurred by the employee or eligible dependents prior to the date of death. Surviving family members must submit a claim form and proof of death to the FSA Administrator to receive reimbursement. Contact the FSA Plan Administrator at (833) 881-8158 to start the claims process.

How the employee's HSA is handled when they pass away depends on whom they designated as the beneficiary.

  • If the employee's spouse was designated the beneficiary, the HSA will be treated as the spouse's HSA after the employee's death.
  • If the beneficiary is someone other than the spouse, the HSA can no longer be an HSA as of the date of death. The fair market value of the HSA becomes taxable to the beneficiary in the year the employee passes away.
  • If no beneficiary designation was made, the employee's estate is the beneficiary.

For balances with the current HSA administrator (Optum/CYC, after January 1, 2020) call (833) 881-8158 to report the death and for information on accessing funds. For balances with the previous HSA administrator (TASC) call 1-844-786-3947 to report the death and for information on accessing funds.

Survivors should submit a Death Benefit Information Request From (ET-7301) to the Department of Employee Trust Funds (ETF) to report the death. Survivors may also call ETF at 1-877-533-5020 to report the death.

ETF will send a claim form to the beneficiary.

Contact recordkeeper(s) for information regarding benefits payable upon death.

Contact Wisconsin Deferred Compensation at (877) 457-9327 for information regarding benefits payable upon death.

Beneficiary Designations

Remember to review and update your beneficiary designations when you have a life event to make sure that your benefits are paid according to your wishes. Benefit plans that have beneficiary designations include life insurance plans, retirement plans and the health savings account.

For more information review the Beneficiary Information web page.

Every effort has been made to ensure this information is current and correct. Information on this page does not guarantee enrollment, benefits and/or the ability to make changes to your benefits.

Updated: 09/24/2021