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Mandatory Insurance FAQs

You may also want to view details about the Student Blue Insurance plan.

The waiver requirement calls for “existing CREDITABLE coverage”.  What exactly is CREDITABLE coverage?

Creditable Coverage means coverage under any of the following: (a) a self-funded employer group health plan under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974; (b) group or individual health insurance coverage; (c) part A or part B of title XVIII of the Social Security Act; (d) Title XIX of the Social Security Act, other than coverage consisting solely of benefits under section 1928; (e) Chapter 55 of Title 10, United States Code; (f) a medical care program of the Indian Health Service or of a tribal organization; (g) a state health benefits risk pool; (h) a health plan offered under chapter 89 of Title 5, United States Code; (i) a public health plan (as defined by federal regulations); (j) a health benefit plan under section 5(e) of the Peace Corps Act (22 U.S.C. § 2504(e)); (k) the Health Insurance Program for Children established in Part 8 of Chapter 108A of the General Statutes, or any successor program.

You are encouraged to check with your health insurance company to find out if your coverage is defined as "creditable coverage" under ERISA. Creditable Coverage includes continuation or conversion coverage but does not include accident only, credit, coverage for onsite medical clinics, disability income, Medicare supplement, long-term care insurance, dental, vision, coverage issued as a supplement to liability insurance, insurance arising out of a workers' compensation or similar law, automobile medical payment insurance, or insurance under which benefits are payable with or without regard to fault and that is statutorily required to be contained in any liability insurance policy or equivalent self-insurance.

To waive, your insurance policy must be effective (active) by September 1 for the fall semester or by February 1 for the spring semester. If your insurance is effective after those dates, you cannot waive out using that insurance until the waive/enroll opens for the next semester. When searching to purchase a health insurance policy, please allow adequate time. Depending on the insurance you are looking at, it could take up to 45 days or more to become effective. 

What happens to my student insurance when I graduate?

If you are currently enrolled in the UNC System Student Health Insurance Plan and graduate, the student insurance will continue to provide coverage through the end of the semester policy coverage period. (Fall - December 31; Spring - July 31).

What do I do if I waived out of the UNC Student Health Insurance Plan and my insurance ends?

If you waived out of the UNC System Student Health Insurance Plan and have a Qualifying Life Event (for example: age off your parent's insurance or insurance is lost due to a job loss) you can contact BCBS directly at 1-888-351-8283 to purchase the student insurance for the remainder of the semester coverage period. Qualifying Life Event insurance enrollment needs to be done within 30 days of losing your previous insurance. Your insurance effective date depends on your enrollment date.

When will the Student Health Insurance charge be applied to student bills?  

Student Health Insurance will be applied to all student bills in July for the Fall semester; and in November for the Spring semester.

Is there an insurance option for my spouse and dependents on the Student Health Insurance Plan?

There is no spouse or dependent coverage on the Student Health Insurance Plan. The Graduate Student Health Insurance Plan (GSHIP), available to Research Assistants and Teaching Assistants, does include spouse and dependent coverage. The PostDoc insurance plan also has spouse and dependent coverage.

Does the fall semester insurance begin August 1 even if a student enrolls in the plan and pays later? 

Yes, except in Qualifying Life Event enrollment. The Qualifying Life Event effective date is determined by the date of enrollment in Student Blue.

Can I waive with health insurance I just purchased?

To waive, an insurance policy must be effective (active) on or before September 1 for the fall semester and on or before February 1 for the spring semester. If your insurance is effective after those dates, you cannot waive out using that insurance until the waive/enroll opens for the next semester.

How does a cancellation/withdrawal from the University impact the Student Blue insurance and the insurance charge on your University Account?

  • If a student cancels/withdraws from school within the first 31 days of the plan semester effective date (August 31 or January 31): the student will be canceled from the Student Blue plan and the premium will be removed from their University account. Any insurance benefits paid will be recouped by the insurance vendor. An exception can be made in the event of a student illness or injury and the student can remain on the plan and the premium will stay on their University account until the semester termination date (December 31 or July 31) . This determination is made case by case.
  • If a student cancels/withdraws from school after the first 31 days of the plan semester effective date (September 1 or February 1): the student will remain on the Student Blue insurance plan until the semester termination date (December 31 or July 31) and there will be no premium refund. If a student receives an approved waiver before the semester waiver deadline, the premium will be removed from their University account
  • Students that do not complete the University Registrar's withdrawal or cancellation process before the end of the semester waive and enroll period will be responsible for the student insurance premium. The student insurance premium will not be removed for a withdrawal or cancellation retroactive to a past semester.

Do I need to enroll in the University Student Blue insurance plan each semester?

Yes, if you want to participate in the University Student Blue insurance, you should enroll online at Student Blue each semester before August 1 for the fall semester and January 1 for the spring semester.

How is insurance eligibility affected if a student first enrolls as a part time student and later changes to a full time student?

Changing from a part time student to a full time student is considered a Qualifying Life Event and this allows students to enroll in the Student Blue insurance. The student can contact Blue Cross Blue Shield for rates and benefits. Qualifying Life Event insurance enrollment is handled directly by Blue Cross Blue Shield at (888) 351-8283 or email@studentbluenc.com.

How do students who enroll late in the University enroll in or waive the UNC System Student Health Insurance Plan? 

Late enrollment is considered a Qualifying Life Event and students are allowed to enroll in the University sponsored insurance. Qualifying Life Event insurance enrollment is handled directly by Blue Cross Blue Shield at 888-351-8283.

If late enrollment in the University is past the semester waive deadline, the student is not required to waive.

Will insurance waivers be checked and verified each semester? Does a student need to waive each semester?

Waivers are checked and verified each semester. Students are required to have an approved waiver for each semester to have the insurance charge removed from their University account.

Do I have to submit my insurance information each semester?

Yes, during the fall waiver process there is an option to have your insurance information re-verified for the spring semester, but remember it is your responsibility to verify that your spring waiver has been approved. An approved waiver is required each semester to have the Student Health Insurance removed from your University account.

What if a student waives, but a week later drops the insurance plan they used when waiving? 

It is a requirement of enrollment for all eligible students to have health insurance. Not having health insurance is a breach of the student conduct code since continuous insurance coverage is required for each semester.

When will students receive their UNC System Student Health Insurance card? 

Insurance cards for students who enroll in Student Blue will be mailed before the fall policy effective date of August 1. If you enroll after August 1, insurance cards will be mailed within 10-14 business days of your enrollment at www.studentbluenc.com/#/uncch. If you do not actively enroll in Student Blue, you will be mailed a card 2-3 weeks after open enrollment ends. If you do not receive your card in accordance with the timeline above, contact Blue Cross Blue Shield at email@studentbluenc.com or call 1-888-351-8283.

How are students billed the premium for the UNC System Student Health Insurance?

Student Health Insurance is added with tuition and fees each semester on University accounts. 

What plan did the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill endorse? 

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill endorses the UNC System Student Health Insurance Hard Waiver Plan. It is administered by Blue Cross Blue Shield. All North Carolina State Universities participate in the same Student Blue insurance plan.

Will students that participate in club sports be covered under the student health insurance plan? 

Yes, students that participate in club sports, and are enrolled in the Student Blue insurance plan, will have the same policy benefits as any other student.

Is there an insurance option if a new student begins classes in the summer, instead of the fall?

If a new student begins classes in the summer and meets the insurance eligibility requirements, they can purchase the student insurance directly from Blue Cross Blue Shield at email@studentbluenc.com or 888-351-8283. This would be considered a late spring enrollment in the University.

Can Financial Aid be applied to the Student Health Insurance charge?

Any questions regarding your financial aid should be directed to the Office of Student Scholarships and Aid.

What Wellness/Preventive benefits are included in the UNC System Student Health Insurance Plan?

The University student insurance plan meets all Affordable Care Act (ACA) Preventive/Wellness benefits. Wellness/Preventive benefits can be found at www.healthcare.gov . Choose all Topics, Prevention & Getting Care, then What are my preventive care benefits?

Who is required to show proof of insurance?

It is a requirement of enrollment for all eligible students to have active health insurance. All students seeking treatment at Campus Health Services are required to show proof of insurance.

I pay a Campus Health Fee on my UNC Chapel Hill bill each semester. How is health insurance different?

The Campus Health Fee is part of tuition and fees at UNC Chapel Hill and covers routine office visits, Counseling and Psychological Services, Physical Therapy and more. Health insurance offsets the cost of services not covered under the Campus Health Fee. Insurance gives students access to services outside of Campus Health Services and it has benefits for services such as hospitalization, required surgery or specialty services for illnesses or injuries.

Why is the UNC System requiring health insurance?

Unexpected health care expenses such as those associated with illness, accidents, or mental health care can destabilize a student’s financial situation and derail his or her progress toward a degree. These potential barriers to attendance and degree completion are reduced when students have health insurance. Conversely, students without health insurance who do not have access to needed specialty care or hospitalization may attempt to continue their academic pursuits but fail to reach their full potential due to their untreated illness.

On January 1, 2014 the Individual Mandate took effect The individual mandate is the provision of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) requiring most people without employer-based coverage to buy qualifying coverage on their own, or pay a tax penalty.

I am covered already by health insurance. What do I need to do so I don't get billed for the Student Blue Insurance?

Students who have an active creditable insurance policy (i.e. through parent plans, family plans, employer-sponsored plans, or the Graduate Student Health Insurance), submit a waiver request online using their insurance policy information for verification through the secure website at www.studentbluenc.com. The waive process is not complete until you receive a return email stating your waiver has been approved. After you receive an approved waiver, the insurance charge will be removed from your University account. Eligible students who do not receive an approved waiver will be enrolled in the UNC System Student Health Insurance Plan and will be responsible for the Student Health Insurance Fee. An approved waiver is required for each semester.

What does the University-sponsored insurance plan cover?

For detail information about the insurance plan benefits please go to Benefits at Student Blue.

I worry about identity theft. Why do I have to provide my private information?

We understand that concern. This is why Blue Cross Blue Shield will not sell our students' information to anyone, including direct mail marketing vendors. Great care is taken to minimize the potential for security breaches that might lead to fraud or other malicious use of personal information.

Can Medicaid be used to waive out of Student Blue?

Yes. Medicaid is considered creditable coverage. The only exception to this would be where the Medicaid coverage is limited to Family Planning only.  Family Planning is not considered creditable coverage and the waiver will be denied.