Employee Benefits

SMU, through Sutter Health, offers a broad range of employee benefits including health, vision and dental care, sick leave, vacation and holiday leave, retirement program, life insurance, flexible spending accounts, voluntary tax-deferred annuities, educational leaves, sabbatical leaves, tuition reimbursement, tuition remission on SMU courses, disability insurance, and more.

Enroll in Benefits

SMU offers employees the option of before-tax reimbursement accounts which may be used for reimbursement of expenses related to dependent care and health care as described below

Dependent Care Reimbursement Account

The dependent care reimbursement account may be a tax-effective way to pay for child care or other dependent care services. The advantage of using the dependent care reimbursement account is that reimbursement payments are made in dollars that are not taxed. Employees who wish to participate may make before-tax contributions through payroll deduction.

Healthcare Reimbursement Account

The healthcare reimbursement account may be used to pay many types of healthcare services not covered by medical, dental or vision benefits options. The main advantage is that employees may be reimbursed for healthcare services with pretax dollars. Employees who wish to participate may make before-tax contributions through payroll deduction.

This plan is administered by the vendor  WageWorks, 866.363.4128.

Health Plans

A number of health plan options are available for benefit-eligible, full-time and benefit-eligible, part-time employees and their eligible dependents for financial protection against certain costs associated with the provision of medical care. Coverage for eligible employees is effective the first of the month following 30-days of hire.

Each year, a period of time will be designated as open enrollment. During this time, employees may choose their health plan for the next 12-month period. If an employee does not make an election during this period, the previous plan chosen by the employee will automatically continue or the employee will be enrolled in the default plan identified by ABSMC. New employees who do not make an election during the designated period for new employees will automatically be enrolled in the Medical Waiver option.

Employees or dependents may be eligible to continue participation in the health, dental and vision plans, at their own expense, for 18 or 36 months following these qualifying events:

  • Death of the employee (36 months)
  • Termination of employment (18 months)
  • Reduction of employee's hours resulting in non-benefit status (18 months)
  • Divorce or legal separation (36 months)
  • Loss of dependent status under terms of plan (36 months)

2020 Comparison Benefit Guide

2020 Dental Plans

2020 Vision Options

Live Well for Life

2019  Health Insurance Rate Sheet

Dental and Vision

Dental and vision plans are provided for benefit-eligible, employees and eligible dependents to help defray the cost of care. The eligibility requirements are the same as for the health plan.

Benefit Waivers

Each year during open enrollment or as part of new employee benefits enrollment, employees may elect to waive the health, dental, and vision package. In order to waive benefits, an employee must provide HR with proof of medical coverage. Employees waiving coverage will receive pay in lieu of benefits at a level designated available for full-time or part-time employment.

Employee Assistance Program (EAP)

SMU knows that employees may experience stress due to family obligations and responsibilities, other factors such as economic or lifestyle changes, or health concerns. SMU provides a helpful benefit called the Employee Assistance Program (EAP).

SMU employees and his/her eligible dependents may initiate EAP visits each year. EAP is a program designed to help an employee attend to himself/herself or a family member in difficult times. Faculty and staff, and eligible dependents can make an appointment for a consultation by calling 800.477.2258 or visiting Sutter Health EAP.  A professional will be assigned to work with the faculty or staff member in confidence. This voluntary treatment plan is confidential and telephone calls or visits are not shared with SMU personnel.

As a means of financial protection, basic life insurance is provided for employees. Insurance may be purchased to benefit eligible employees in order to supplement basic life insurance coverage. Employees that purchase supplemental life insurance may also purchase coverage for dependents.

Learn More

A retirement plan that includes investment alternatives and a matching contribution plan is available to all benefit-eligible employees. The retirement plan rewards special contributions of the long-service employee by providing a measure of financial security during retirement.

Eligibility and Participation

After one year's employment, all employees working a regular schedule of at least 20 hours per week are eligible. In order to begin participating in the plan, employees must sign up with one of the chosen vendors. Detailed information on vendors and retirement benefits are available from HR. Qualifying employees may contribute to the retirement plan on a voluntary basis prior to the completion of the first year of employment. These contributions may be on a pre-or post-tax basis. Voluntary contributions are not matched by the University.

The Standard


403(b) Forms