Making Changes
You may change your enrollment once each year during the annual enrollment period. You will be notified in advance of the annual enrollment dates. Coverage changes will take effect the following January 1.
Qualifying Life Events
When Changes Take Effect
If your enrollment change is approved, it will become effective on the date the qualifying life event occurred.
In most cases, you cannot change your healthcare benefit election during the year. However, you may be permitted to add or drop a dependent, or enroll for or drop coverage, if you experience a change in one of the following areas:
  • Legal marital status—including marriage, death of a spouse, divorce or annulment. Note: Legal separation is not considered a qualifying life event. If you cover your spouse under your Stryker healthcare benefits, you may not drop him or her from your coverage in the event of legal separation.
  • Declaration of Domestic Partner Status—declaration or termination of partnership
  • Number of dependents—including birth, adoption, placement for adoption, acquiring a stepchild, acquiring a foster child, obtaining legal guardianship of a child, or death
  • Dependent status—a dependent child either satisfies or fails to meet Stryker's eligibility requirements (e.g., by reaching age 26 or because of disability status)
  • Compliance with a court order regarding medical coverage of a dependent child or a Qualified Medical Child Support Order (QMCSO) or National Medical Support Notice (NMSN)
  • Employment status—you, your spouse or your dependent child either start or stop working and lose coverage through another health plan
  • Work schedule—standard working hours for you, your spouse or your dependent child either increase or decrease. A change in work schedule includes a switch between full-time and part-time employment (or vice versa), a strike or lockout or an unpaid leave of absence. If your spouse is covered under his or her employer's benefits plan, and your change in work schedule is considered a qualifying life event under your spouse's plan, you may become eligible to participate in that plan. In this situation, you may be able to drop Stryker coverage in order to enroll for coverage under your spouse's plan.
  • Residence or worksite—you move in or out of your medical plan's service area as the result of a change in the place where you or your spouse live or work
  • Dependent's legal residence—your eligible spouse or other dependent moves to the United States from another country. Note: In the event that you enroll your spouse or other dependent for coverage in this situation, your contributions for his or her coverage will be made on an after-tax basis for the remainder of the plan year. Pre-tax contributions may begin the following plan year.
  • Loss of other health plan coverage—you, your spouse or your dependent child lose coverage under another employer-sponsored health plan
  • Significant change in coverage under another employer plan—coverage provided by your spouse's or dependent's employer changes
  • Enrollment period under another employer plan—the enrollment period for benefits under your spouse's or dependent's employer plan occurs while your elections are in effect
  • Eligibility for Medicare or Medicaid—you or a covered dependent becomes eligible for or loses eligibility for Medicare or Medicaid
  • Reduction in hours of service—you and your dependents may drop your group health plan coverage, even if you remain eligible for such coverage, if:
    • You were reasonably expected to work 30 hours per week and you experience a change in employment, after which you are reasonably expected to work less than 30 hours per week
    • You intend to enroll yourself and any dependents dropping coverage in another health plan (satisfying the Affordable Care Act's definition of minimum essential coverage) effective no later than the first day of the second month after you drop Stryker's coverage.
    • Note: You are not permitted to change your health care FSA elections because of a reduction in hours of service.
  • Enrollment in a health plan offered through the public Marketplace—If you are eligible for a special enrollment period to enroll in public Marketplace coverage, or you want to enroll in public Marketplace coverage during the public Marketplace's annual open enrollment period, you may drop group healthcare coverage under the Stryker plan, even if you remain eligible for coverage under this plan. You (and any dependents whose coverage is dropped at this time) must intend to enroll in Marketplace coverage that is effective no later than the day immediately following the last day your coverage under the Stryker plan is dropped. You are not permitted to change your health care FSA elections because you intend to enroll in a plan offered through the public Marketplace.
If you need to change your healthcare benefit election due to one of these life events, your Benefits representative must approve any benefit election changes. See "Life Event Guide—Healthcare" for details about making benefit changes as a result of a qualifying life event.
Qualifying Life Event Rules
Documentation Required
You will be asked to provide proof of the life event (if applicable) within 30 days of any qualifying event and dependent documentation, such as a marriage or birth certificate, within 30 days of any qualifying life event in order to enroll on a pre-tax basis.
Changes to your healthcare benefit election must be consistent with the qualifying life event. This means that the event must affect eligibility for health benefits under Stryker's plan or a plan sponsored by your spouse's or dependent's employer. For example, if you get married, your new spouse becomes eligible for coverage under the Stryker Corporation Welfare Benefits Plan. In addition, you may become eligible for health plan coverage through your spouse's employer. In this situation, the qualifying life event permits you to:
  • Add yourself or your spouse to Stryker's plan, or
  • Drop coverage under Stryker's plan if you enroll for coverage under your spouse's health plan.
If you are enrolled in a medical plan option other than the UnitedHealthcare PPO, HSA or Out-of-Area plan, see the supplemental summary plan description for the applicable plan (provided in the Location-Based Provisions section) or contact your Benefits representative for specific information regarding eligibility requirements. You will be asked to provide proof of the life event (for example, loss of coverage under another health plan) and dependent documentation, such as a marriage or birth certificate, of any qualifying life event. See "Life Event Guide—Healthcare" for further details on Qualifying Life Events.