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Insurance Insights

Fort Dearborn Life Launches New Brand Name: Dearborn National

Beginning January 4, 2010, Fort Dearborn Life Insurance Company, the current provider for Life Insurance, Accidental Death and Dismemberment Insurance, Long-Term and Short-Term Disability Insurance for UT System employees, retirees and dependents, began a transition to market its products and services under a new brand name — Dearborn National™. 

In the coming months, you will see new marketing materials, forms, and a rebranding of the Web site with the new Dearborn National look.

While the new brand name Dearborn National will be utilized to communicate and advertise Fort Dearborn Life Insurance Company and its affiliates, the new brand name does not affect ownership of the company. The Fort Dearborn Life Insurance Company will maintain its legal name and continue to underwrite and provide products and services.

Will Fort Dearborn Life Insurance Company Continue to Be Responsible for Paying My Claims?
Yes, Fort Dearborn Life Insurance Company continues to be the underwriting company and will continue to process claims accordingly, as well as provide service and support as usual.

Who Do I Call with Questions?
You will continue to call the same Customer Service number you have called in the past. For the first six months of 2010, Customer Service will answer calls with a transitional message indicating that Fort Dearborn Life Insurance Company is now marketed as Dearborn National. Beginning June 2010, Customer Service will begin answering calls with a Dearborn National greeting.

While the rebranded Dearborn National Website will be rolled out over the coming months, until then you can continue to visit the current customized UT Website at http://www.fdl-life.com/ut/.

Read list of Frequently Asked Questions.

Changing Your Group Insurance Benefits Mid-Year

Normally, benefits eligible employees or retirees are permitted to make changes to their benefit elections only during the Annual Enrollment period (typically July of each year) for the UT System uniform group insurance program (UGIP).  However, Federal tax law and the UGIP plan rules specify certain “changes of status” events -- sometimes also called “life events” or “qualifying events”—that provide a basis for an employee or retiree to revoke an existing benefit election for themselves or a covered dependent and/or make new coverage elections before the next annual enrollment period.

Common examples of qualified “change of status” events include:

Employees and retirees have 31 days (or if the change is due to a change in CHIP status, 60 days), from the date of a qualifying change of status event to notify their institution’s Benefits Office and change their benefit elections to correspond with the qualifying event.  It is very important to note that if the qualifying status change has the effect of rendering you or one of your dependents ineligible for current benefits coverage (for example: a change of appointment that brings an employee below a 20 hours per week, divorce of a spouse with current  dependent coverage, or, in the case of a child with current dependent coverage, marriage or reaching age 25),  you must report the status change within 31 days to remain in compliance with state law and the UGIP plan rules.

If the status change entitles you to add or change coverage for yourself or a dependent, you must make the election changes during the 31-day (or 60 for CHIP status changes) period. If you fail to elect the corresponding change within the 31 day period (60 day for CHIP status changes), you lose the ability to make that change mid-year. Instead, you will be required to wait until the next Annual Enrollment period to make any benefit enrollment changes and the changes will take effect the beginning of the next plan year on September 1. Evidence of Insurability may be required to add certain benefit coverages if you wait until Annual Enrollment instead of enrolling during the qualified status change period.

The Texas Insurance Code (TIC) Chapter 1601 determines the categories of individuals who are eligible for UGIP coverage as an employee - retiree - or a dependent -under any coverage offered by the UT System group insurance program (UGIP).  If a status change results in a loss of eligibility for coverage, that change must be reported as soon as possible so coverage can be terminated for that individual and the individual can be notified of his or her right to any continuation coverage available under COBRA. An ineligible individual who receives benefits to which they were not legally entitled can be required to repay those benefits. Failure by an employee to report a status change that results in ineligibility for coverage is also a violation of UT System policy and may result in disciplinary action. In some cases, a failure to report or remove an ineligible individual from UGIP coverage may also constitute insurance fraud which may be reported to the Texas Department of Insurance for investigation and possible legal action.

For questions regarding changes of status, please refer to OEB Policy 310 or contact your Institution Benefits Office.

Contact Us

If you have a Benefits question, submit your question by replying to the “newsletter email” or by sending an email to benefits@utsystem.edu.

UT System Employee Benefits Web site: www.utsystem.edu/benefits/
UT System Retirement Programs Web site: www.utretirement.utsystem.edu
Your Local Benefits Office: http://www.utsystem.edu/benefits/contacts#1