Process a Life Event

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Introduction

During your time with the City of West Allis, you may experience a life event that will require a change in your health insurance or other benefits. Before a life event occurs, you should get to know your options and obligations. As you browse this page, keep in mind the following important information:

  •  Life event changes must be made using the City’s online system for benefits enrollment, Kenz Innovation HCM; see "Processing a Life Event" below for details
  • If you miss the deadline to process a life event, you will have to wait until the annual open enrollment period (typically late January)
  • Proper documentation (e.g. birth certificate, divorce decree) must be provided for certain changes, such as adding or removing qualified dependents; see "Special Information" below for details
  • Some changes may prompt you to make additional decisions, such as changes to your beneficiaries or tax withholdings; see "Other Considerations" below for details
  • A Qualifying Life Event allows you to make changes to your life insurance coverage without evidence of insurability; see "Other Considerations" below for details and application
  • There may be a change in the amount deducted from your pay due to election changes

Qualifying Life Events

Employees can make changes to their benefits once per year during the open enrollment period, which is typically in late January. You cannot make changes to health, dental, or other benefit coverage outside of the annual enrollment period unless you experience a qualifying life event. Qualifying Life Events include:

  • Legal marital status changes, such as marriage, divorce, separation, or death
  • A change in the number of dependents, such as birth, adoption, legal placement, or death
  • Gain or loss of other coverage, such as would occur if your spouse or dependent enrolls in another benefit plan 
  • Medicare, Medicaid, or Title 19 eligibility, or attaining Medicare age

Employees interested in learning more about benefits, including effective dates and enrollment deadlines, should review the Employee Benefits Guide.

Processing a Life Event

If you experience a qualifying life event, you must make any changes to your benefits within 30 days of the event using Kenz Innovation HCM, the City’s online system for benefits enrollment. To process a life event:

1. Log In to Kenz Innovation HCM 

Navigate to cwa.mykenzinnovationhcm.com. The site works best with Microsoft Edge, Mozilla Firefox, or Google Chrome. Once on the Kenz Innovation HCM login page, enter your username and password. 

Note: Your username is your first name + your last name + “CWA” (i.e. JaneDoeCWA). You selected your password at the time of your first login to the system. If you forgot your password, use the “Can’t access your account?” feature on the login page to reset it. If you are having issues accessing Kenz Innovation HCM, contact Human Resources at HR@westalliswi.gov.

2. Choose the Life Event

Using the upper left navigation, select “My Benefits” followed by “Life Event.” You will be directed to select the life event. Follow the on-screen prompts to provide details on the life event. For instance, you will need to enter birth, marriage, or divorce dates, so have this information handy.

Note: If the change you wish to make isn’t shown, email Human Resources at HR@westalliswi.gov.

3. Make Your Elections 

If you are adding dependents to your coverage, you must either elect or waive coverage for each benefit option (e.g. health, dental, vision, flexible spending account, etc.). Select “option available” to view available benefits. After making all elections, select “save elections” to finalize the life event.

IMPORTANT: Entering dependent information does not automatically enroll them into coverages. You must select the box next to your dependents’ name to enroll them into each plan.

4. Birth / Adoption / Award of Legal Guardianship (if applicable)

Kenz Innovation HCM will ask you for a Social Security number. If you don’t yet have one, enter all nines (e.g. 999-99-9999), update this information as soon as you receive it, and forward to HR@westalliswi.gov via secure email.

Note: As soon as you have it, provide a birth certificate via secure email to HR@westalliswi.gov to confirm the life event.

Special Information

In addition to the general instructions provided above, please note the special information for each scenario below.

Child Maximum Coverage Age

If your dependent child has reached the maximum coverage age (26), they will be dropped from your coverage automatically at the end of the month in which they reach maximum coverage age. You do not need to process this event in Kenz Innovation HCM. You will receive an email from Human Resources with information on COBRA coverage and other details.

Dependent Coverage

Eligible dependents may participate in the City’s health, dental, and vision plans only if the employee is also enrolled. An eligible dependent means a covered employee’s: 

  • Legally recognized spouse (domestic partners are not eligible for health benefit coverage)
  • Natural blood-related child, step-child, legally adopted child, or a child under your legal guardianship (as determined with a court decree) whose age is less than 26 years old. Each child must legally qualify as a dependent as defined by the United States Internal Revenue Service guidelines or applicable state law
  • A covered employee's child whose age is less than 26 years old and is entitled to coverage because of a medical child support order
  • Grandchild, provided the employee's covered dependent (the parent of the grandchild), is not age 18

Marriage 

  • You have 30 days from the date of the marriage to add your spouse to your benefits. 
  • The effective date for health and dental benefits is the date of the marriage.
  • As soon as you have it, provide the marriage license or certificate via secure email to HR@westalliswi.gov to confirm the life event

Divorce

Following your divorce, your former spouse is no longer a dependent. You MUST remove your former spouse from your insurance plan using Kenz Innovation HCM and submit documentation via secure email to HR@westalliswi.gov.

Gain or Loss of Other Coverage

Any time you or a qualified dependent has a gain or loss of other coverage, this could be considered a Qualified Life Event. You can make changes to your City of West Allis coverage by selecting the “Gain of Other Coverage” or "Loss of Other Coverage" button on the Kenz Innovation HCM life events page.

You may also wish to consider joining the Family Savings Plan (FSP). The FSP is a way for you to save money by transitioning from your City health insurance to another employer-sponsored plan (typically your spouse’s plan). With the Family Savings Plan, you and your family can be reimbursed for eligible out-of-pocket health care expenses (including copayments, coinsurance, and deductibles) and, in some cases, premiums. Visit the FSP webpage for more information.

Separation from Employment

When your employment ends – whether through retirement or voluntary/involuntary separation – your benefits will continue through the end of the month of separation. If not eligible to enroll in retiree benefits, you may be eligible for COBRA; see below for details.

Medicare

Active employees and covered dependents who are Medicare eligible may remain on the City's plan. Contact the Social Security Administration to discuss Medicare registration requirements.

COBRA

  • Employees may be eligible to continue health insurance coverage for up to 18 months after separation of employment by electing COBRA (short for Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1985) and paying the full cost.
  • A spouse and dependents may continue coverage under COBRA for up to 36 months if they lose coverage due to the death of the employee, divorce from the employee, loss of dependent status due to age, or the employee’s eligibility for Medicare.
  • If you are an active COBRA participant, you have the right to make changes to your health plan elections during the City's annual open enrollment period. 
  • For more information on COBRA, visit the U.S. Department of Labor’s COBRA website.

Other Considerations

You may wish to consider changing other benefit-related options at this time. Select the links below to access forms for making these changes.

Beneficiary designations

Your pension and life insurance are administered by the Wisconsin Department of Employee Trust Funds; to update your beneficiaries, mail your completed form directly to the address on the form.

Life insurance coverage

A Qualifying Life Event allows you to make changes to your life insurance coverage without evidence of insurability; submit a completed form to HR@westalliswi.gov no later than 25 days after the life event.

State and Federal withholdings

You may wish to update your State or Federal tax withholdings; discuss these changes with your tax professional.