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Open Enrollment 2019

What's New for 2019 Open Enrollment

Enrollment Period: October 22 - November 9

The annual Open Enrollment period is generally the only time during the year when you can make changes to your benefit elections and enroll or disenroll yourself and/or your dependents. This year’s Open Enrollment is active, meaning that all employees are required to participate by confirming elections and dependent information online. This is required in order for the College to comply with Affordable Health Care reporting requirements.

Enrollment Deadline:

The open enrollment period will begin on Monday, October 22 through Friday, November 9. If you currently participate in a Medical Flexible Spending Account, Dependent Care Flexible Spending Account, or Health Savings Account, you must actively elect or re-enroll in this account by Friday, November 9.

New this year: Benefitfocus Enrollment System

We are pleased to introduce a new benefits enrollment system, Benefitfocus. Benefitfocus will now serve as the enrollment site for Swarthmore College employees’ health and welfare benefits. The system will simplify the process for enrolling in and managing benefits during Open Enrollment and throughout the year. Benefitfocus will allow employees to learn about their benefit options, select the plans that are right for them, and easily manage enrollment in medical, dental, vision and life insurance plans. It also lets employees manage their health savings account (HSA), flexible spending accounts (FSA), transit benefits, and more all through a single tool.

Benefitfocus will also be available for employees to make mid-year qualifying changes, as allowed by plan rules, and will act as the document repository for such changes.

The portal can also be accessed from a mobile device by downloading the Benefitfocus mobile app from the Google Play or Apple App Store; use the company code Swarthmore.

Accessing the Benefitfocus system during Open Enrollment (*the system will be accessible beginning October 22)

  1. Log into your mySwarthmore account.
  2. Select the “Open Enrollment” link on the top of your mySwarthmore homepage.
  3. When you arrive at the Welcome page, select “Click here to Complete Open Enrollment” on the right side of the screen.
  4. You will then be directed to the Benefits Portal.  Following the welcome message, select “Get Started”.
  5. You will be presented with a screen listing all of your current dependents (if applicable).  If dependent information is correct, click “Next”.
  6. If you do not see a dependent(s) you wish to cover listed, click the “Add Dependent” button to begin adding the dependent(s), if you do not need to add a dependent.  If a dependent child is older than six months, you will be required to enter a SSN.
  7. The next screen will list your 2018 benefit enrollment.  Any section that requires an annual election (FSA, HSA, Dependent Care), will have a box that reads “Enroll Here”; you will be required to finish these sections before you can complete your enrollment.
  8. If you wish to change any benefit plan, you will need to select the “Edit Coverage” option in the appropriate section.  Some examples include: changing medical plan or dental plan, or enrolling in any voluntary benefits for the first time.   If you wish to decline a benefit, click the “Decline Coverage” option on the left side of the appropriate plan section.
  9. If you are editing your medical plan coverage, you will see the option to review projected annual costs for each plan, based on your own personal/family utilization (10/1/17 – 9/30/18).  If you have not been enrolled in Swarthmore’s medical plan for at least one year, you will see a national cost average (and not personal cost information).
  10. If you wish to change medical plans, follow through the prompts to select your new medical plan.
  11. Click “next”.
  12. You will be offered a medical flexible spending account (or HSA if applicable), and a dependent care spending account next.  Make your election or decline this benefit.
  13. The next screen will summarize your elections so far.  Click “Save” in green.
  14. After saving your elections, you can still make changes to any benefit by selecting the “Edit Coverage” option in the appropriate benefit section.
  15. Once all sections have been completed and you have selected the green “Complete Enrollment” icon at the bottom of the screen, you will receive a confirmation number stating you have completed your enrollment.  You will also have the option to download a copy of your Benefit Summary Report. 


If you want to enroll or continue your enrollment in either the Medical Flexible Spending Account, the Dependent Care Flexible Spending Account, or the Health Savings Account you MUST ENROLL EVERY YEAR. Your current elections will not be rolled forward.

You may also enroll in a limited-purpose Flexible Spending Account. If you have a Health Savings Account (HSA) the IRS eligibility rules don’t allow you to also have a Health Care FSA. A Limited Purpose FSA is designed specifically for employees who enroll in the High Deductible Health Plan (HDHP) and have an HSA. A Limited Purpose FSA is available for reimbursement of dental and vision expenses only.

If you are interested in enrolling in a Limited Purpose FSA for 2019, please contact John Cline ( or Diane Echternach ( before the end of the open enrollment period on November 9, 2018.

Health Savings Account ("HSA")

  • If you selected the High Deductible Health Plan, you have the option to enroll in a Health Savings Account that allows you to save pre-tax for your annual deductible as well as other qualified medical expenses now and in the future.

Flexible Spending Accounts

  • Health Care Flexible Spending account contributions are limited to $2,650 per year and Dependent Care Flexible Spending account contributions are limited to $5,000 per year.

Open Enrollment Materials

Summaries of Benefit Coverage

Benefit Rates For 2019

Other Forms and Coverage Descriptions for voluntary benefit enrollment

Additional Resources