Death of a Dependent

After the loss of a dependent, you may need to update or change the following information:

Remove your dependent from your health, dental and vision insurance:

  • You must complete and submit the Benefits Change Form PDF Document to the Benefits Division within 31 days of the loss. A death certificate is required.
  • If you were previously covered under your late spouse’s plan, you and your dependents may elect coverage with Northwestern University.
  • You cannot change the health or dental plan in which your family is enrolled.
  • Insurance premiums are not prorated. Regardless of the date of the loss, you are financially responsible for the entire month of insurance premiums.

Change your life insurance coverage:

  • If your spouse passed away, use the Benefits Change Form PDF Document to waive spouse life insurance.
  • Waive your dependent child life insurance if you no longer have a qualifying dependent child, using the Benefits Change Form PDF Document.
  • Allow the Benefits Division five business days to process your Benefits Change Form before changing your life insurance beneficiaries through the Self Service Portal.

Reevaluate your eligibility for the Dependent Care Flexible Spending Account (FSA):

  • If your spouse passed away you may be newly eligible for the Dependent Care FSA and the Employer Match. To enroll in an FSA complete the Benefits Change Form PDF Document. To apply for the Employer Match submit the Dependent Care University Match Application PDF Document.
  • If you no longer have qualifying dependent children, you must waive the Dependent Care FSA and the Employer Match. Any unused money remaining in the account will not be reimbursed.