Washington University offers eligible postdoctoral appointees a comprehensive benefits package. Health benefits plans are designed to help protect postdoctoral appointees and their covered dependents.

Here is a quick reference from the Summary of Benefits to determine who is eligible for Washington University’s benefits:

Postdoctoral Appointee Eligibility

All WashU postdoctoral appointees are eligible for benefits:

  • Postdoctoral Research Associates are eligible because they are University employees.
  • Postdoctoral Research Scholars are eligible because the cost of benefits must be covered by the outside funding source or the University. If the funding agency’s funds are not sufficient to completely cover the Postdoctoral Research Scholar’s benefits (including the Postdoc Scholar’s portion of costs), the department must provide the remainder. Learn more here.

You have 31 days from your date of hire or the date you became eligible for benefits to enroll in WashU health and insurance benefits. Once you have made your elections, coverage is effective as of your date of hire or benefits eligibility date.

The benefits you elect will remain in effect through the calendar year, unless you have a qualified change in status (see the Summary of Benefits for more information).

Your next opportunity to change your benefits will be Open Enrollment, usually in the fall. Changes are effective the next calendar year.

Dependent Eligibility

Dependent eligibility for benefits-eligible postdoctoral appointees is restricted to:

  • Your spouse, defined as a person you are legally married to under applicable state law where the marriage was performed. (This does not include ex-spouses, even if you are required to provide court ordered benefits.)
  • Your same- or opposite-sex domestic partner, defined as a person to whom you are not legally married, but who resides with you in a non-platonic relationship and with whom you have an emotional and financial commitment. You and your domestic partner must not be married to or the domestic partner of another person. This eligibility may have tax implications, for which you are responsible.
  • Your or your spouse’s/domestic partner’s child under age 26 (includes a natural child, stepchild, a legally adopted child or child placed for adoption or child under full court appointed legal guardianship under age 26).
  • Your child age 26 or older who is disabled and dependent on you for support, as long as the disability existed prior to the child attaining age 26.