Need to Save for Retirement or
Want to Contribute More?
Did you know that you can adjust your contributions to your 403(b) or 457 (b) retirement plan anytime during the calendar year even if you made a change during Open Enrollment last November?
If you are currently participating in the University of Maine System’s 403(b) or 457(b) plan with TIAA, you may be able to save even more for retirement by increasing your pre-tax contributions.
Here is why...
As you know, the University of Maine System offers employees the opportunity to save for retirement and supplement basic pension benefits by making contributions on a pre-tax basis. This opportunity allows for saving on Federal and State taxes.
Contributions may be made up to the maximum permitted by the Internal Revenue Code [Section 403(b) and 415] with TIAA. See below for further information. To find out who is eligible, how to enroll or make changes to your plan, go to the UMS employee portal www.myyms.maine.edu, and visit under Human Resources/Employee Information/Benefits headings.
How much can I contribute?
In general, you may elect to contribute up to $18,000 in calendar year 2017. This amount is the general limit on what you can elect to defer under the 403(b) plan and may be adjusted annually in accordance with Internal Revenue Service (IRS) guidelines.
However, please keep in mind...
Additional catch-up contributions may be permitted if certain criteria are met. Specifically, if you are at least age 50 (or will turn age 50 during the calendar year), you may defer an additional $6,000 contribution, which is referred to as a catch-up contribution.
This means that if you are under age 50, you may contribute a maximum of $18,000 in calendar 2017; if you are age 50 or older or will turn age 50 sometime during calendar year 2017, you may contribute a maximum of $24,000 ($18,000 plus $6,000 age 50 catch-up during the calendar year).
What do I have to do to contribute or adjust my contributions to the 403(b) plan?
To begin pre-tax contributions or to change your current pre-tax contributions, please complete your elections online in MaineStreet. If you do not have access to a computer, contact the Employee Benefits Center (EBC) at (866) 269-9635 and complete a Salary Reduction Agreement.
Please keep in mind that you must establish an account directly with TIAA, the sole record keeper. You may change your 403(b) contributions at any time during the calendar year and as often as you like. You may, of course, keep your contributions at their current level.
457(b) Limits are exactly the same
All UMS employees who are eligible to tax-defer income under the 403(b) plan are also eligible to defer under the University’s 457(b) plan. While the 457(b) plan operates similarly to any other tax-deferred voluntary option relative to deferral of federal and state taxes, IRS regulations currently permit you to defer the calendar year maximum under each plan.
The 457(b) calendar maximums are the same as the 403(b) limits above. Therefore, if you are under age 50, you could defer a total of $18,000 in the 403(b) plan and $18,000 in the 457(b) plan; if you are age 50 or older or will turn age 50 sometime during the calendar year, you could defer a total of $24,000 in the 403(b) plan and $24,000 in the 457(b) plan.
To begin or change contributions under the 457(b) plan, please adjust your elections on line in MaineStreet. If you do not have access to a computer, contact your Employee Benefits Center at email@example.com or (866) 269-9635 and complete a Salary Reduction Agreement.
Did you know you don’t have to be a financial expert to be smart about money?
April is National Financial Literacy Month! Knowing how to manage your money can help you pursue financial goals like paying down debt, saving for retirement, buying a house or other priorities. To make the most of your money, create a plan that helps you save and invest wisely and get the most from your employer benefits. Learn more.
The University of Maine System does not provide legal, tax, or financial advice. Employees are encouraged to contact their financial representative or tax professional
Other coverage: Your plan supplements the preventive care services listed above with additional services that are commonly ordered by primary care physicians during preventive care visits. These include services such as urinalysis, EKG, thyroid screening, electrolyte panel, Vitamin D measurement, bilirubin, iron and metabolic panels.
This document provides highlights of preventive care coverage generally. Some preventive services may not be covered under your plan. For example, immunizations for travel are generally not covered. Other non-covered services/supplies may include any service or device that is not medically necessary or services/supplies that are unproven (experimental or investigational). For the specific coverage terms of your plan, refer to the Evidence of Coverage, Summary Plan Description or Insurance Certificate.
“Cigna,” the “Tree of Life” logo and “Together, all the way.” are registered service marks, of Cigna Intellectual Property, Inc., licensed for use by Cigna Corporation and its operating subsidiaries. All products and services are provided by or through such operating subsidiaries, and not by Cigna Corporation. Such operating subsidiaries include Connecticut General Life Insurance Company (CGLIC), Cigna Health and Life Insurance Company (CHLIC), Cigna Behavioral Health, Inc., and HMO or service company subsidiaries of Cigna Health Corporation, including Cigna HealthCare of Arizona, Inc., Cigna HealthCare of California, Inc., Cigna HealthCare of Colorado, Inc., Cigna HealthCare of Connecticut, Inc., Cigna HealthCare of Florida, Inc., Cigna HealthCare of Georgia, Inc., Cigna HealthCare of Illinois, Inc. (IL & IN), Cigna HealthCare of Indiana, Inc., Cigna HealthCare of St. Louis, Inc. (MO, KS & IL), Cigna HealthCare of North Carolina, Inc., Cigna HealthCare of New Jersey, Inc., Cigna HealthCare of South Carolina, Inc., Cigna HealthCare of Tennessee, Inc. (TN & MS), and Cigna HealthCare of Texas, Inc.
855050 e 08/15 © 2015 Cigna. Some content provided under license.
*Savings are based on a 90-day fill/refill and are subject to your plan’s provisions. Your benefit plan may differ based on state law. Please check your plan documents for more details and to confirm that you have the Cigna Home Delivery Pharmacy benefit.
All Cigna products and services are provided exclusively by or through operating subsidiaries of Cigna Corporation, including Cigna Health and Life Insurance Company, Connecticut General Life Insurance Company, Tel-Drug, Inc., Tel-Drug of Pennsylvania, L.L.C., and HMO or service company subsidiaries of Cigna Health Corporation. “Cigna Specialty Pharmacy Services” refers to the specialty drug division of Tel-Drug, Inc. and Tel-Drug of Pennsylvania, L.L.C., doing business as Cigna Home Delivery Pharmacy. The Cigna name, logo, and other Cigna marks are owned by Cigna Intellectual Property, Inc.
886437 11/15 © 2015 Cigna. Some content provided under license.
One of the many benefits available to members of the University of Maine Benefit Program is MDLIVE, a virtual care provider able to respond to your non-emergency questions and concerns 24/7/365.
What is MDLIVE?
With MDLIVE, you can access a doctor from your home, office, or on the go- 24/7/365. Our Board Certified doctors can visit with you either by phone or secure video to help treat any non-emergency medical conditions. Our doctors can diagnose your symptoms, prescribe medication, and send prescriptions to your pharmacy of choice.*
While MDLIVE is not intended to replace your primary care doctor, a virtual doctor’s appointment can sometimes substitute for a doctor’s office, urgent care, or an emergency room visit.
It is important to note that MDLIVE is designed to handle non-emergency medical issues. You should not use MDLIVE if you are experiencing a medical emergency. In case of a medical life threatening emergency, you should dial 911 immediately.
When can I start using my new account?
You can start using MDLIVE immediately after you sign up and activate your account. Sign up and activation are totally free. If you are required to pay, you will only be asked for your credit card information when you visit with a doctor. Once you have an MDLIVE account, you can browse doctor profiles, view available appointment times, and schedule an appointment with the doctor of your choice. Want to go one step further? Be sure to fill out your medical history profile to better prepare your MDLIVE doctor for your appointment.
Where is MDLIVE available?
MDLIVE is available anywhere in the United States. Our network of Board Certified doctors will be provided to you based on the state you are located. We make sure that each doctor is fully licensed to practice medicine in your state.
How much does it cost?
Getting started is totally free. If you’re receiving MDLIVE as part of a group benefit, you may not be required to pay at all. If you are required to pay, you will only be charged after you choose to consult with a doctor and your appointment time and payment information are confirmed. You can cancel your appointment and receive a full refund, provided that you cancel at least 24 hours before your appointment time. MDLIVE accepts most major credit and debit cards.
Want to learn more about MDLIVE?
Visit https://mdlive.com/ums or call 1-888-726-3171 and find out how this benefit offered by your University of Maine System Health Plan can fit your needs.
New Facilities Joining Tier 1 Benefits
For those of you in a benefit plan in which inpatient and outpatient facility copay’s are tiered based upon preferred providers, we are pleased to announce that effective January 1, 2017, the following facilities fall into your preferred tier (Tier 1) benefits.
These groups are associated with MaineHealth, a newly aligned collaborative with Cigna.
In addition to benefiting from a lower facility copay, MaineHealth’s contract with Cigna
will promote a higher level of quality of care, and lower costs for you and your family members.
With this latest development, all hospitals in Maine are now rated Tier One within the University of Maine System Health Plan(s).
For more information on your coverage and network providers, please visit your Benefits Page.
EHPTF: Not Just Another Acronym
What does EHPTF really stand for?
The Employee Health Plan Task Force (EHPTF) is a multi-stakeholder forum to provide guidance to the University of Maine System (UMS) regarding health care benefits for employees and their dependents.
Why is their work so important?
Because the University of Maine System is “self-insured” – As a self-insured employer, UMS pays for all medical and prescription claims for covered employees and dependents. All the risk of increased costs – as well as the benefit of slowing the rate of increase in health care costs – goes to UMS and employees in the form of monthly contributions costs. Each year monthly employee contribution amounts are determined based upon the most recent twelve months of closed claims. (For more information on what it means to be self-insured, go to www.fairhealthconsumer.org and enter “self-insured” in the keyword search).
If UMS is self-insured, why does my insurance card come from CIGNA?
UMS hires CIGNA as our plan administrator. CIGNA is paid an administrative fee to process claims, administer our medical and prescription plans and provide related services such as Disease Management, 24-Hour Health Information Line, Home Delivery Pharmacy, and Customer Support. (Go to www.MyCIGNA.com to access or get information on these and other resources such as CIGNA’s Health Cost Estimator and My WebMD Health Manager.)
What happens if the current year actual claims are more than predicted?
If at any time the actual claims expense is more than the established contribution amount, UMS must make up for the shortfall through other, unrestricted UMS financial resources.
What happens if actual claims are less than predicted?
If claims expense is 1% or more below the predicted contribution rate over a two-year period, current bargaining agreements and Board of Trustees policy provide for a rebate to be paid to affected employees.
No matter the season, breathing fresh air gives your body, brain, and spirit a boost! Outdoor exercise can increase your energy while decreasing tension, frustration, and depression. In the winter, exercise can be more invigorating, thus having an intensified positive effect on your body. All forms of exercise can increase your level of those “feel-good” hormones known as endorphins. Because your body has to work harder in the cold weather, your endorphin production is boosted even more, which can lead to a happier state of mind. Plus, exposure to natural light is a known depression fighter, especially for Seasonal Affective Disorder, a condition brought on by the shorter, darker days.
Cold weather exercising does have it challenges. You should be prepared and take steps to be safe:
Cancer and its many treatments
There are nearly as many treatments for cancer as there are types of cancer, making it one of the most complex diagnoses possible.
Cancer can begin in the lungs, the colon or even in the bloodstream. It can stagnate in certain areas of the body or spread through the body, and the spreading can happen slowly or very rapidly.
While cancers are alike in some ways, they can differ significantly in many others - including how they grow and spread.
Oncology research has advanced to the point that more people than ever before lead full lives after cancer treatment, but there is still not a definitive cure for cancer, and the multitude of treatment options further complicates managing the disease.
In addition, cancer has become so common that doctors are often quick to diagnose it and treat the disease as if it is invasive or fast-moving - which is not always the case.
If you have been diagnosed with cancer, it's important to confirm it is being treated appropriately. Treatments vary widely, and can include traditional therapies (such as surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy), newer forms of treatment (clinical trials) and complementary or alternative therapies.
Cancer can be difficult to diagnose, and misdiagnosis is increasingly common. With treatments that include surgery and radiation therapy, the need for certainty in your diagnosis is imperative before you and your doctor can even determine an appropriate treatment method.
This is an example of where the Best Doctors benefits can be so important and useful. After an in-depth review of your medical case by our experts, you will receive a straightforward, easy-to-understand report that either confirms your diagnosis and treatment or recommends a change. If you have been diagnosed with cancer, take advantage of Best Doctors to look beyond the diagnosis and plan for the best, most appropriate treatment.
Call 866-904-0910 or go online to members.bestdoctors.com
This information is not meant to provide medical advice or service, and should not be construed as the professional advice of Best Doctors. As such, Best Doctors does not guarantee or assume responsibility for the correctness of the information or its applicability regarding any specific factual situation. Personal health problems should be brought to the attention of physicians and appropriate health care professionals.
Best Doctors and the star-in-cross logo are registered trademarks of Best Doctors, Inc. in the United States and other countries. All rights reserved.