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Division of Human Resources

Enroll & Make Changes

After the initial enrollment, subsequent insurance enrollments and changes must be made during an open enrollment period for the following plan year, unless a qualifying life event occurs that allows mid-year changes.

State Insurance Benefits

Learn the necessary steps to receive and maintain the insurance coverage you need.

Eligible employees may enroll in state insurance benefits within 31 days of their date of hire. 

Failure to complete enrollment documents within 31 days of hire will result in a missed opportunity to enroll initially and your next opportunity to enroll will be during open enrollment or due to a qualifying life event, whichever occurs first.

The university uses an online system to ensure that you have completed all of your new employment tasks. You will receive an email notification to get you started.

Important: If you are refusing all insurance benefits, you must complete the Active Notice of Election  form and submit it to your campus Benefits Office.

Generally, transfer employees cannot make changes to state benefits, unless a special eligibility situation occurs simultaneously with the transfer to USC.

Open enrollment occurs annually from October 1 – October 31. All changes made during open enrollment are effective for the new plan year, beginning January 1.

Each year, employees may:

  • Enroll, cancel or change health and vision plans
  • Add or drop dependents
  • Cancel or decrease optional life insurance or dependent life spouse coverage

Changes are made online through MyBenefits.

Employees may also:

  • Enroll or increase optional life and dependent life spouse, which may require medical evidence of insurability 
  • Enroll or re-enroll in MoneyPlus Flexible Spending Accounts (Medical Spending Account, Limited-use Medical Spending Account, Dependent Care Spending Account) using MyBenefits

During odd enrollment years (e.g., 2025, 2027), subscribers may:

  • Enroll, cancel or change dental plans

If you have a qualifying life event outside of an open enrollment period, you may be able to make changes to state insurance benefits:

  • Within 31 days of your life event, contact the Benefits Office at 803-777-6650. If you are employed at a campus other than Columbia, contact your campus benefits administrator [pdf].
  • Generally, upon notification, your benefits administrator will initiate an online transaction in MyBenefits for your review and approval
  • Provide appropriate documentation [pdf], e.g., a marriage certificate to add a new spouse
  • To make a change, enroll or cancel a MoneyPlus Flexible Spending Account MSA,LMSA,DCSA), complete the Active Notice of Election (NOE) Form [pdf] and submit it to your benefits counselor
  • At any time during the year, subscribers may update contact information and beneficiary designations with SC PEBA Insurance by accessing the MyBenefits online enrollment system. 
  • Subscribers may update name and address information by submitting the Name/Address Change form [pdf] to the USC Benefits Office.  


State Retirement Benefits

Your retirement benefits are an investment in your own future, so be sure to thoughtfully consider your options and enroll within the first 30 days of your employment.

Eligible employees have 30 days from their date of hire or date of eligibility to make a selection into state retirement benefits. If you do not make a selection within that time period, you will automatically become a member of South Carolina Retirement System (SCRS) or Police Officers Retirement System (PORS), which is irrevocable.

Enrollment into retirement benefits is initiated through the university’s online system. You will receive an email notification asking you to complete a task in our system. Once that task is completed, you will receive an email from PEBA that allows you to make your state retirement enrollment selection. Important: If you do not respond to the email from PEBA within 30 days of your initial date of hire, you will default into an applicable plan SCRS or PORS), which is irrevocable.

Note: Generally, employees transferring from another PEBA-participating employer cannot make changes to state retirement benefits at the time of transfer to USC.

There is an annual open enrollment period between January 1 and March 1. During this time, State ORP members may:

  • Change vendors either by using Member Access, or by completing Form 1162
  • Irrevocably switch to SCRS, if at any point during the open enrollment period, they have at least one year, but no more than five years of participation from initial enrollment in State ORP

All changes made during this time will be effective April 1.

  • At any time during the year, active members can change their address on file with SC PEBA Retirement through Member Access. Retired members can also change tax withholdings, and modify existing direct deposit authorizations. 
  • Subscribers may update name and address information by submitting the Name/Address Change form [pdf] to the USC Benefits Office. 


South Carolina Deferred Compensation Program (SCDCP)

SCDCP is administered by the USC Payroll Office.

Eligible employees may enroll in SCDCP at any time throughout the year by following the instructions in the  SCDCP Enrollment Guide [pdf] to enroll online  (enter USC Payroll Center Number 1417). Empower Retirement will notify the Payroll Office to start your payroll deduction(s).

Note: Participants transferring to USC from another SCDCP participating employer must contact Empower Retirement and provide the USC Payroll Center Number 1417.

Participants can increase, decrease or stop contributions at any time using the SCDCP website

  • 401(k) contribution changes may take up to two pay periods to take effect
  • 457 contribution changes are monthly

Empower Retirement will notify the Payroll Office accordingly.


USC Supplemental Benefits  

These plans are administered by Colonial Life and Trustmark.

Eligible employees have 30 days from their date of hire to enroll.

The University of South Carolina partners with Ward Services, a third-party enrollment vendor, to offer a personalized enrollment experience.

Schedule a one-on-one (virtual or in-person on campus) meeting with a Ward Services benefits representative to learn more, ask questions and get assistance enrolling in these benefits.

For online scheduling support, call 844-533-2022. Once your appointment is scheduled, you will receive a confirmation and reminder email from AppointmentPlus. If you don’t receive these emails, please check your junk mail.

Open enrollment occurs once a year. Eligible employees may enroll in plans by scheduling a meeting with a Ward Services benefits representative.

Ward Services is a third-party enrollment vendor approved by the Division of Human Resources and Hub International.

Automobile and homeowner's insurance may be purchased anytime throughout the year, but may be subject to approval of other conditional clauses outlined within the policy.

Learn more about these programs »

Learn more about the 403(b) Plans >>

Log into the Retirement@Work  portal with your USC username and password to:

  • Enroll in your University of South Carolina 403(b) Plan.
  • Change your voluntary contribution amount at any time.
  • Choose your preferred retirement plan provider(s).
  • View retirement plan balances across plans and investment providers.
  • Access tools and resources for planning.

To enroll you may be required to enter a plan number or code on your selected provider’s site to continue with enrollment.  

  • Corebridge Financial
    An access code is not required.  When prompted, enter “University of South Carolina” as your employer.

  • Fidelity Investments
    An access code is required.  When prompted, enter USC Employer Number 86892.

  • TIAA
    An access code is not required when using the TIAA link on the Retirement@Work confirmation page.

Refer to the Retirement@Work Quick Start Guide to log into the portal.

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