Skip to content Skip to navigation

Review Your Eligibility for Enrollment

You are eligible to participate in the Stanford University Postdoctoral Scholar Benefits Program if you are a postdoc that has been appointed 30 or more hours per week.

Certain plans also permit  you to cover your eligible dependents.  The health care, dental, and vision plans allow you to cover your:

  • Spouse (unless legally separated) or registered domestic partner of the same sex, as well as opposite-sex partners when one partner is age 62 or older and is qualified for Social Security benefits.*
  • Married and unmarried dependent children who are under 26 years, regardless of student status.

In addition to your natural child, the term "child" also includes stepchild, legally adopted child, a child who has been placed with you in anticipation of adoption, a child for whom you are the legal guardian, and a child of your registered domestic partner. The child also must be your tax dependent if he or she is a child of your registered domestic partner.

Stanford University also provides health coverage to certain children if the university is directed to do so by a qualified medical child support order (QMCSO) issued by a court or state agency of competent  jurisdiction.

Under this law, courts may require a postdoc, in certain events such as a divorce, to provide medical, dental and vision coverage to a child who might  not otherwise  be covered. Contact the Postdoc Benefits Office at (650) 724-9490 or postdocbenefits@stanford.edu to obtain a copy of the QMCSO procedure.

If you enroll a dependent, the Postdoc Benefits Office requires proof of dependent eligibility for the dependents you cover.  The Dependent Eligibility Documentation table details what is considered acceptable proof of dependent eligibility.

For the medical, dental and vision plans, you may choose from one of the following enrollment categories:

  • Postdoc Only
  • Postdoc + Spouse/Registered Domestic Partner
  • Postdoc + Child(ren)
  • Postdoc + Family (includes Spouse/Registered Domestic Partner and Children)

You may select different enrollment categories for your medical, dental and vision plans. For example, you may enroll your entire family for medical coverage, but only yourself for dental; or you, your spouse and child for medical and you and your spouse for dental.

You also have the option to waive postdoc medical, dental and vision benefits.

*Currently, registered domestic partners are not included in the IRS code as tax dependents. Thus, the IRS requires us to report the value of the medical coverage paid on behalf of a registered domestic partner (less any post-tax contributions) as taxable income to you.