Open Enrollment

Open Enrollment is an annual opportunity for faculty and staff, retirees and survivors, and benefits-eligible graduate students to make changes to their benefits for the following calendar year.

Save the Date

Open Enrollment for 2021 benefits runs Monday, October 19 through 5:00 p.m. Friday, October 30, 2020.

Add Open Enrollment reminders to your calendar:

What's New for 2021

New Health Plan Option

Eligible faculty, staff and retirees will have an additional health plan choice for 2021. The university will add Michigan Care to the available options, a new managed care plan. Enrollment in Michigan Care is limited to those who live in a specific geographic area within southeast Michigan. Learn more about Michigan Care and see if you are eligible to enroll.

Use the new Health Plan Coverage Comparison tool to view a detalied comparison of coverage options for Michigan Care and the other U-M health plans.

Health Care Flexible Spending Account Annual Contribution Increase

FSAs are pretax accounts faculty and staff may use to pay for eligible health care expenses and/or dependent day care expenses.

  • The annual contribution limit for a Health Care FSA will increase to $2,750.
  • IRS rules do not allow FSA enrollments to continue from one year to the next. If you want to participate in a Health Care FSA and/or a Dependent Care FSA in 2021, you will need to re-enroll.

Learn more about Flexible Spending Accounts

How to Make Changes During Open Enrollment

Please note: Online enrollment is recommended for faculty, staff, retirees and LTD participants. The Wolverine Access gateway will have a new look for Open Enrollment. Classic Wolverine Access tabs will still be available. 

  • Faculty, staff, and benefits-eligible graduate students may make changes online through Wolverine Access benefits self service during Open Enrollment, October 19-30, 2020 (ends at 5:00 p.m.).
  • Retirees, surviving spouses, surviving other qualified adults, and LTD participants may make changes through Wolverine Access benefits self service, or by completing and returning the "Open Enrollment for 2021 Benefits" form included with the benefits information the Benefits Office will mail to their home addresses on file with the university late September. 
  • COBRA participants and those on Leave of Absence or Reduction in Force may make benefits changes by completing and returning the "Open Enrollment for 2021 Benefits" form the Benefits Office will mail, along with benefits information, to their home addresses on file with the university in late September. 

Enrollment Deadlines

No action is required to keep your current benefits, except for Flexible Spending Accounts. IRS rules require annual enrollment to participate in an FSA.

  • Online changes must be completed by 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Friday, October 30, 2020.
  • Completed enrollment forms must be faxed, or postmarked or received by October 30, 2020.

No walk-in service is available. Wolverine Tower is closed during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Changes Are Effective January 1, 2021

New rates and any changes you make during Open Enrollment will go into effect January 1, 2021. Your benefits will remain in effect through December 31, 2021 as long as you remain eligible. 

Important Notes

  • Please make sure your address is up to date with the university. Learn more.
  • Wolverine Tower is closed during the COVID-19 pandemic. Walk-in service is not available.
  • Wolverine Access will have a new look. New Wolverine Access will roll out on September 27, 2020. Check it out now.
    • For quick access to benefits self service, enter Benefits in the Search bar, or click on the Employee Self Service tile, and then select the Benefits tile.
    • Classic Wolverine Access tabs (Faculty & Staff; Students) will still be be an option if you prefer. 
  • Wolverine Access (M-Pathways) supported browsers are Chrome, Edge, Firefox, Internet Explorer, and Safari. Learn more about browser and operating system support.


Changes Outside of Open Enrollment

Outside of the annual Open Enrollment period, you may be able to make specific benefits changes within 30 days of a qualifying family status event. See Life Events for details on making benefits changes.

Benefits You Can Change Any Time

Retirement savings plans, life insurance, and long-term disability plans are not part of Open Enrollment. If eligible, you may enroll or make changes to these plans at any time. 

Note: Retirement Savings Plan Elections Will Be Closed October 29 and 30, 2020

U-M Retirement Savings Plan elections are not part of Open Enrollment and you can make changes at any time throughout the year. However, to avoid conflict with Open Enrollment benefit changes, initiating Basic Plan, 403(b) SRA, and 457(b) Deferred Compensation Plan elections through Wolverine Access Self-Service will not be available on the last two days of Open Enrollment,Thursday, October 29 and Friday, October 30, 2020. These elections will become available on Saturday, October 31, 2020.