International GA Insurance Waiver Process Guidelines -- FAQs for HR Liaisons
Are International GAs employed by TAMUS part 06 (Texas AgriLife Research) or 07 (Texas AgriLife Extension Service) included in the International GA Insurance Waiver Report?
Yes, GAs employed by system part 02 (TAMU-CS), 06 (Texas AgriLife Research), 07 (Texas AgriLife Extension Service), 10 (TAMUG), 12 (TTI), 23 (TAMHSC), and 28 (TEES) will be included in the waiver report if they meet ALL the conditions described in the Summer International GA Insurance Waiver Guidelines.
Does the International GA Insurance Waiver Process apply to TAMUQ students?
TAMUQ students who are enrolled only at TAMUQ will not be charged SSHIP because they are not on F or J visas. However, students on the TAMUQ campus enrolling in TAMU-CS courses and who are maintaining their F or J status are charged SSHIP.
Will an International student be eligible for the waiver if they are enrolled in courses during the Spring and begin employment in a benefit eligible GA position on 02/01?
The student in this scenario will be charged SSHIP based on their enrollment in courses in the spring. The student would not be eligible for the waiver since their employment in a GA benefit eligible position begins on February 1 and would not cover January.
Where can we find the waiver process for newly employed international GAs on F-1 or J-1 status?
The process can be found on the TAMUS Benefits for Graduate Student Employees – Staff Instructions document.
I have an International graduate student on a 9-month work period in fall/spring. The student is not enrolled or employed during the summer, and will return to their assistantship position on 9/1. If the student remains an active employee in Workday during the summer, and is not enrolled in summer classes, will they be charged SSHIP?
If the student is not enrolled during the summer, they are not charged SSHIP.
I have an International graduate student on a 9-month work period in fall/spring. They are enrolled in TAMU-CS classes over the summer but they are not employed. There is a reasonable expectation they will return to employment in a benefit-eligible GA position in the fall. Will they be charged SSHIP?
Because the student is enrolled in TAMU-CS coursework during the summer, they will be charged SSHIP. However, the student would be eligible for the waiver if they meet ALL of the conditions noted on the Summer International GA Insurance Waiver Guidelines, including remaining an active employee in Workday as of June 1 (i.e. is not placed on unpaid time off or unpaid LOA). Graduate and Professional School.
I have an International graduate student on a 9-month work period in fall/spring. There is a reasonable expectation they will return to employment in a benefit-eligible GA position in the fall, thus we are leaving them as an active employee in Workday during the summer. Later in the summer, we learn that the student will not return to a GA benefit-eligible position in the fall. What should we enter in Workday as the last day employed and termination date?
Do not retroactively terminate the employee. The “termination date” is the date the termination is processed in Workday. The “last date worked” is the last date of the active appointment. The HR Liaison should remind the graduate student they need to enroll in SSHIP using a Qualifying Event enrollment. More information on how to enroll can be found on the Student Health Plan Website.
In prior terms, our department had several students not show up on the waiver report. It was learned that their Alien Work Authorization Expiration Date was updated with ISS but not updated in Workday. What can HR Liaisons do to avoid this issue from re-occurring?
HR Liaisons can run the “Workers with other ID’s” report in Workday to identify active GAs with expired or missing Alien Work Authorization Expiration Date other ID’s. This should be done to identify any possible inaccuracies or outdated information. If updates are needed, the HR Liaison must contact the GA to complete an I-9 re-verification. This data feeds from the I-9 system to Workday.
Other related FAQs not specific to International StudentsI have a graduate student in a 9-month appointment and receiving benefits through an Assistantship. The student will transition to a fellowship next fall and continue to receive benefits as a Fellow. Can the student remain an active employee in Workday during the summer until they are transitioned from benefits as a GA to benefits as a fellow in the upcoming fall term? If not, what are the options for the student to retain benefits in the summer.
The GA would not be entitled to summer benefits as an employee because there is not a reasonable expectation that they will return to a graduate student employee benefit-eligible position in the fall. They should be terminated at the end of the spring term. For the summer, the student would be able to elect continuation coverage up to 3-months directly from AHP. In the fall, the student would also be able to enroll in benefits as a fellow when their fellowship starts.
I have a graduate student in a 9-month appointment and receiving benefits through an Assistantship. There is a reasonable expectation they will return to an Assistantship position in the fall. Are there any options so that the graduate student employee can be employed in a student worker position in the summer without losing benefits?
Yes. The recommendation is to add the student worker position as an Additional Job in Workday. This will maintain the graduate student employee’s primary position as a benefit-eligible position, and the student worker position will be the additional job for the summer.
Are non-Graduate Student Employee International Students eligible to apply for the alternative health insurance waiver process through AHP?
Students can apply for waivers directly through Academic Health Plans.
Are graduate students who are receiving benefits from an entity other than the TAMUS eligible to apply for the alternative health insurance waiver process through AHP this summer if they enroll in courses through TAMU-CS, TAMUG, and/or TAMHSC?
To be eligible for the waiver, ALL the conditions described in the Summer International GA Insurance Waiver Guidelines must be met to be eligible for the waiver. This includes receiving benefits through the A&M Care Plan, J Plan or the Graduate Student Employee Health Plan. If ALL conditions are not met, the graduate student will not be able to apply for the alternative health insurance waiver process through AHP this summer.
I have a graduate student that will take leave in the fall but there is a reasonable expectation they will return to employment in the spring. Can the student be placed on Leave Without Pay/Leave of Absence (LWOP/LOA) in the fall?
Yes, but the student will not appear on the fall waiver reports and will be enrolled in and charged for SSHIP.
What are some examples of when it is appropriate to put a GA on unpaid time off or unpaid Leave of Absence (LOA)?
Unpaid time off is for an employee out for less than 30 days, LOA in Workday is for an employee out for more than 30 days. LOA has historically been referred to as Leave Without Pay (LWOP). With appropriate approval per 31.99.99.M0.01 President’s Delegation of Authority for Human Resources Administration Matrix and HROE Leave of Absence Guidelines, an employee may go on unpaid time off or unpaid LOA for illness, injury, or for other reasons. LOA may also be appropriate when a GA is approved for an International Temporary Work Location (ITWL) that exceeds the maximum 60-day approval time for the ITWL. HR Liaisons should contact the appropriate HR office (email@example.com for A&M, firstname.lastname@example.org for Texas A&M Health Science Center) if they have additional questions about handling unpaid time off, or LOA, and implications for benefits. Employees, as a whole, should not be placed on leave to bypass the SGIP waiting period.
I have a student who is charged SSHIP during the summer while enrolled in the Graduate Student Employee Health Plan. The waiver requirements were not fulfilled by the deadline. When can the student expect a reimbursement for SSHIP?
Reimbursement for students charged SSHIP during the spring/summer while enrolled in the Graduate Student Employee Health Plan is expected in November.