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Changing FTE (Standard Hours): Impact to Benefits and Leave - FAQs

The following information is general in nature and subject to change as benefits or leave plans change. To discuss your individual, specific benefit elections or options, and obtain the most recent information, please contact the Benefits office by email at benefits@ku.edu or by phone at 785-864-4946.

What type of position provides benefits eligibility?

Visit Benefits Eligibility to determine if a position is benefits eligible.

How would changing to a part-time position affect benefits eligibility?

  • If the FTE is less than 48% time, benefit program participation is limited to Charitable Contributions, the Voluntary 457 Deferred Compensation Retirement Plan and the 529 Education Savings plan.  Please refer to Temporary & Student Employee Voluntary Benefits for more information.

  • If the position is “regular” and the FTE is at least 48%, you will be eligible for all benefits. Some benefits are calculated as a percentage of salary, such as mandatory retirement. Therefore, FTE changes which result in salary changes will impact those benefits. Other benefits are flat dollar amounts and will not be impacted by salary changes such as optional group life insurance.

What benefits will be affected if both a change in FTE and salary occurs?

Retirement Plan Contributions

Kansas Public Employees Retirement System (KPERS):  Employee contributions are based on Tier level.  Currently Tier 1 members contribute 4% and Tier 2 members contribute 6%.  The State’s contribution is established by the legislature.  Kansas Board of Regents Unclassified retirement plan: Employees contribute 5.5% of gross salary; KU contributes 8.5% of gross salary up to the IRS contribution limits.

Health Insurance Benefits

Employees in full-time benefits eligible positions pay a smaller portion of the health, dental and prescription drug premiums.  Employees in part-time benefits eligible position pay a larger portion of those same premiums.  To find out the specific premiums, please visit Employee Health Insurance or contact the Benefits Office by email at benefits@ku.edu or by phone at 785-864-4946.

Voluntary Retirement Plan Contributions (VTSA)

The amount eligible to be deferred into the VTSA program will be impacted by FTE. If FTE changes, contact the Benefits Office by email at benefits@ku.edu or by phone at 785-864-4946 and a calculation will be performed to determine the maximum amount that can be deferred.

Flexible Spending Accounts (Health and/or Dependent Care)

The amount of money you set aside for reimbursement for health care expenses cannot be changed because FTE changes. But, money you set aside for reimbursement of dependent care expenses can be changed if your FTE changes from full to part-time or vice versa.

Life Insurance Coverage

Life insurance benefits will be calculated using the highest of: 150% of your annual salary or 150% of your salary over the last twelve months prior to death.

Disability Insurance Coverage

If you become eligible for long-term disability coverage, your disability benefit will be 60% of your salary at the time disability commenced, less social security disability benefits.

How will leave accruals be affected by changes in FTE ( full-time equivalency)?

  • Accruals for sick and vacation leave will depend upon whether you are exempt (salaried) or non-exempt (hourly) for FLSA purposes. Vacation leave maximums remain the same. Academic year faculty/academic staff accrue only sick leave. For information about vacation leave accrual, visit Vacation Leave. For information about sick leave accrual, visit Sick Leave.
  • If you are non-exempt (hourly), a decrease in FTE would result in less hours worked, and may therefore reduce your leave accruals.
  • If you are exempt (salaried), a decrease in FTE may reduce your leave accruals.

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