Health at SMU

Qualified Life Events

Certain events in your life may require that you make changes to your Medical, Dental, and/or Vision coverage, Flexible Spending Account(s), and Life Insurance. With the exception of your 403(b) Retirement Plan (which can be changed anytime throughout the year), there are only two opportunities to make changes to your benefits:

1) During the annual Open Enrollment period
2) When you have a Qualified Life Event

A qualified life event is generally defined as a change in your status due to marriage, birth or adoption of a child(ren), death of a family member, divorce, loss or gain of insurance coverage by your spouse, or termination of your spouse's employment. Other events may also qualify. 

Allowable Changes

For detailed guidelines on the allowable benefits changes for the various life events, please go to Change of


Notify the Department of Human Resources


All qualifying life events require submission of supporting documentation to the Department of Human Resources. Immediately following your life event, send an email to and include the following:


  • Your SMU ID #
  • General description of the event
  • Event effective date
  • Names of individuals affected by the event

Be sure to attach a copy of your supporting documentation to your email.

You have 31 days from your event date to make allowable changes via Access.SMU Employee Self-Service.

Acceptable supporting documentation includes:

  • Marriage license
  • Divorce or separation decree
  • Birth certificate
  • Spouse employment status documents (offer letter, COBRA notice, etc.)
  • Spouse coverage status change (enrollment or termination notice, etc.)

Proof of dependent status:

If you are enrolling your spouse and/or eligible dependents for the first time, proof of the dependent relationship must also be submitted (in addition to documentation supporting the event).

For spouse: Copy of marriage license AND a document dated within the past 3 to 6 months which confirms a current / existing financial connection (i.e. most recent joint tax return, a joint account bill, etc.). In the event of divorce, a copy of the fully executed divorce decree must be provided.


For dependents: Copy of birth certificate, adoption or legal guardianship decree. If you wish to enroll a dependent child age 19 or older in the Dental Plan, documentation must be provided verifying full-time student enrollment.