Domestic Partner Benefit Coverage

The University of Iowa offers you the opportunity to insure your domestic partner under various benefit programs, including health, dental, and accidental death and dismemberment insurance. If you file an Affidavit for Domestic Partnership, your family status will change, there will be associated changes in premiums and University contributions, and there may be changes in your tax liability.

In order to insure a partner, you must file an Affidavit of Domestic Partnership (which is valid for same or opposite-sex partners), or a State of Iowa Affidavit of Common Law Marriage with the University Benefits Office (opposite-sex partners only - see information on Common Law Marriage). You need only to complete this affidavit once and it will remain in effect until such time as the relationship ends. It is your responsibility to notify the Benefits Office if a domestic partner relationship ends. A new affidavit would have to be filed for any new relationship. After you have filled out the affidavit, a new benefits event will be opened for you under “Benefits Enrollment” on the HR Self-service website. You will then be able to make your benefits changes online, in the same manner that you make changes during the annual online open enrollment.

When the completed enrollment form has been received by the University Benefits Office, you and your domestic partner will receive identification cards for the selected health/dental insurance plans. All claims will be filed by your partner under your name and insurance ID number.

If you are currently classified as Single for Benefits coverage, adding a domestic partner with or without a child/or children will increase your costs.

Children of either you or your domestic partner may be insured under any of the benefit programs providing they meet the guidelines which have been established by the insurance carrier and the University.

If you already have your own child (or children) and you are responsible for their insurance, adding your partner’s child/children to your coverage will not result in an increased cost to you.

The University is prevented by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) from allowing you to pay for coverage on a before tax basis. The exception to this rule is if your domestic partner meets the Internal Revenue Service dependency guidelines, then your domestic partner may be included under the before tax program. These dependency guidelines require that the employee must provide more than 50% of the domestic partner's support and both of you must share the same household.

If you feel that you meet this qualification, you must note this on your Affidavit in order to qualify for this special program. Otherwise, you and your partner will be considered separately concerning both the University contributions and for the payment of any premiums.

The University will apply the Federal COBRA regulations for your domestic partner. This means that if your domestic partner's insurance is canceled as a result of termination of your employment, ending of the domestic partner relationship, or a child of the partner no longer qualifying as a dependent, then the individual who loses the coverage will be eligible to continue the insurance on a voluntary basis.

The issue of benefits for your domestic partner is complex. If you have additional questions, please feel free to contact the Benefits Office directly at 335-2676. All information supplied by you and your domestic partner is kept confidential and this information is only released to the insurance carrier or to parties outside of the Benefits department which are involved in the processing of the enrollments and deductions.