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Employment, Workplace Rules, Benefits and Governmental Notices

Education Benefits, Supplemental Dependent Tuition

Scope

Certain employees identified by Human Resources

Policy Statement

SUPPLEMENTAL POLICY

  1. Eligible dependents, eligible employees, and eligible former employees are as defined in the Supplemental Dependent Tuition Benefits Eligibility Policy ("Supplemental Policy"). This Supplemental Policy is separate from the general Syracuse University Dependent Tuition Benefits policy that applies to eligible employees ("General Policy"). The purpose of the Supplemental Policy is to allow certain employees and former employees that have been designated by the Syracuse University Office of Human Resources ("Office of Human Resources"), in writing, to receive the dependent tuition benefits described in the Supplemental Policy without any eligibility waiting period (i.e., participants under the Supplemental Policy will not be subject to the three years of continuous full-time employment eligibility requirement that applies under the General Policy). The Supplemental Policy shall be tested as a plan that is separate from the General Policy under the nondiscrimination requirements in Section 117(d)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, and the University shall withhold any taxes that may be required as a result of such testing. When a participant in the Supplemental Policy satisfies the eligibility requirements of the General Policy, the participant shall no longer be eligible for dependent tuition benefits under the Supplemental Policy and instead shall only be eligible for dependent tuition benefits under the General Policy. All references in the remainder of this Supplemental Policy to a Dependent Tuition Program or Benefit shall mean the Dependent Tuition Program or Benefit that is available under the Supplemental Policy.

  2. The eligible dependents must meet admissions requirements leading to acceptance by the college or university of their choice, in a program of study leading to their first baccalaureate degree. To continue receiving tuition benefits, eligible students must continue to meet the academic requirements of their specific program.

  3. Eligible students are eligible for only one Dependent Tuition Program at a time. Eligible students with both parents employed by the University are eligible for only one Dependent Tuition Program and for the defined length of time specified by that Program.

  4. Tuition benefits may be applied to undergraduate course work only. All credit hours taken under the Dependent Tuition Program, even though not passed or completed, and those dropped after the financial deadline, will be considered used benefits and will not be subsequently reinstated. The records of the Registrar's Office shall be determinative in establishing credit hour usage for dependent tuition limits.

  5. Dependent Tuition may be applied to a semester or summer study abroad program through DIPA or another qualifying program for which the eligible student has met the acceptance requirements, if enrolled in the Dependent Tuition program.

  6. Dependent Tuition Benefits do not cover tuition before the eligible student's initial matriculation date. Not covered: Project Advance, Advance Placement, Pre-College Programs or any Summer Session courses taken before the initial matriculation date.

  7. Applicants for Dependent Tuition Benefits are required to timely apply for a New York State TAP award each year Dependent Tuition Benefits are being used. This requires filing, within federal deadlines, a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), to automatically generate a pre-printed New York State TAP application (an exemption from the FAFSA filing requirement, based on income, is available if certain requirements are satisfied). Failure to satisfy the requirements in this paragraph will result in a $200 reduction of the Dependent Tuition Benefit ($100 each semester).

The total value of the Dependent Tuition Benefit is equal to the number of credit hours required for completion of the first baccalaureate degree. This is the eligible student's Dependent Tuition allotment. The Dependent Tuition Benefit is applicable to regular tuition charges only. Charges for housing and meals, fees covering student activity, laboratory, individual instruction, music and voice lessons, health, athletics and other fees are not covered by Dependent Tuition.

Dependent Tuition Benefits could, in certain circumstances, be subject to taxes. If such circumstances are present, the University will withhold whatever taxes are required by applicable law.

Leaves

An approved leave of absence, whether paid or unpaid, which is obtained in accordance with applicable University policies, will not affect eligibility for Dependent Tuition Benefits unless the leave of absence results in the termination of all benefits eligibility with the University. Any eligible student enrolled in classes at the point of termination of benefits eligibility may complete the courses in which he or she is enrolled that semester. Tuition and fees for classes taken in subsequent semesters will be the responsibility of the student.

Termination

Termination of benefits eligible employment will result in immediate termination of all Dependent Tuition Benefits (except to the extent the Office of Human Resources provides otherwise in writing). Any eligible student enrolled in classes during the semester in which the termination occurs may complete the courses in which he or she is enrolled that semester. Tuition and fees for classes taken in subsequent semesters will be the responsibility of the student.

Retirement, long term disability, or death

Upon retirement, death or long-term disability of an eligible employee whose eligible dependent is matriculated and actively using Dependent Tuition Benefits, the Dependent Tuition Benefit will continue under the original terms of the individual program until completed. To qualify for Dependent Tuition Benefits for eligible dependents not yet matriculated and actively using the Dependent Tuition Benefit at the time of death, retirement, or "long-term disability" (as that term is defined by the Office of Human Resources), the eligible employee must have seven (7) years of continuous full-time employment, or the equivalent for part-time employees, prior to his or her change in employment status. Hours counted toward the equivalency requirement would include all hours up to 40 hours per week. The Office of Human Resources reserves the right to make such exceptions to these requirements, in writing, as are determined to be in the best interest of the University.

Programs

Dependent Tuition Eligible dependents receive full tuition for matriculated undergraduate study only at Syracuse University, University College, or Utica College. Limited to the number of credits required for his/her first baccalaureate degree. Summer Session courses are available under the Dependent Tuition Program to those eligible students matriculated into Syracuse University, University College, or Utica College.

Tuition Exchange

Eligible dependents receive tuition for full-time undergraduate study at another member institution of Tuition Exchange, Inc. leading to the first baccalaureate degree. Limited to a maximum of eight semesters. Tuition is not guaranteed at any of the participating member colleges. Tuition Exchange scholarships are awarded by the participating member institutions according to their own criteria. The value and duration of each award may be restricted. Summer Session courses are not available under the Tuition Exchange program, except for qualifying study abroad programs (see Supplemental Policy #5).

Cash Grant

Eligible dependents receive up to $1250 per semester for a total of eight semesters of full tuition for matriculated full-time studies leading to the first baccalaureate degree. Summer Session courses are not available under the Cash Grant program, except for qualifying study abroad programs (see Supplemental Policy #5).

Transferring between programs

Changing programs within SU: Eligible students transferring from one degree program and/or school or college within Syracuse University to another will be eligible for the number of credit hours required to complete the undergraduate degree program to which the student has transferred less the number of credit hours already used under the Dependent Tuition Program since matriculation, even though some of the pre-transfer credits may not be applicable to the new degree.

Transferring from another institution to SU: For eligible students transferring from another institution to SU, the value of the Dependent Tuition Benefit shall be the number of total credit hours required for completion of the SU undergraduate degree program to which the student is admitted LESS those credits accepted by SU from other institutions toward the completion of the new degree program.

Transferring from either the Cash Grant or Tuition Exchange programs to SU: For an eligible transferring student who was the recipient of either Cash Grant or Tuition Exchange Benefits while studying at another institution, the value of the Dependent Tuition Benefits shall be the number of credits required to complete the SU undergraduate degree program to which the student was admitted LESS 12 credit hours for each semester of benefit used under the Cash Grant or Tuition Exchange program OR the number of transferred credits accepted by SU, whichever is greater.

Transferring from SU to another institution under either Tuition Exchange or Cash Grant programs: The eligible student allotment will be eight semesters LESS the number of semesters used under the Dependent Tuition Benefit program at SU.

As is the case with all of its employee benefits, the University reserves the right to amend or terminate these benefits at any time and from time to time, and retains the discretion to construe any ambiguity or uncertainty that might arise with respect to this policy.

Supplemental Dependent Tuition Benefits Eligibility Policy

Syracuse University Employees

Syracuse University employees eligible for Dependent Tuition Benefits under the Supplemental Policy are:

  1. Benefits eligible full- and part-time staff who have been designated by the Office of Human Resources in writing as being eligible to participate in this Supplemental Policy; or

  2. All regular full- and part-time faculty (percent of effort for part-time faculty: 62.5 percent to 75 percent per academic year) who have been explicitly appointed by a single academic unit to the category of regular full-time or regular part-time, for a period of more than one academic year, and who have been designated by the Office of Human Resources in writing as being eligible to participate in this Supplemental Policy; or

  3. Any participant in the University's Tenured Faculty Voluntary Phased Retirement Program who has been designated by the Office of Human Resources in writing as being eligible to participate in this Supplemental Policy.

In addition to satisfying the eligibility requirements described above, an employee wishing to qualify for Dependent Tuition Benefits must receive compensation through the University's Syracuse New York payroll system, and must be classified as being eligible for Dependent Tuition Benefits in the records of the Office of Human Resources.

Under the Dependent Tuition Program for enrollment in Syracuse University, University College, or Utica College, eligible Syracuse University employees whose eligibility date (as specified by the Office of Human Resources in writing) falls after June 1 but before January 1 will be granted the benefit for the fall semester. Eligible employees whose eligibility date (as specified by the Office of Human Resources in writing) falls on or between January 1 and June 1 will be granted the benefit for the spring semester.

Under the Cash Grant and Tuition Exchange programs, if the eligible Syracuse University employee's eligibility date (as specified by the Office of Human Resources in writing) falls after the first day of classes the Dependent Tuition Benefit does not begin until the following semester.

Former Employees

Former employees eligible for Dependent Tuition Benefits under the Supplemental Policy are those who have been designated by the Office of Human Resources in writing as being eligible to participate in the Supplemental Policy.

As is noted at the beginning of this Supplemental Policy (see Supplemental Policy #1), eligibility for Dependent Tuition Benefits under this Supplemental Policy shall cease when a covered employee or covered former employee satisfies the eligibility requirements for dependent tuition benefits under the General Policy.

Dependents

The dependents of eligible employees and former employees who have met the eligibility requirements specified above (such eligible employees and former employees shall be referred to as "Participants") are eligible for Dependent Tuition Benefits under the Supplemental Policy, provided such dependents 1) are unmarried, 2) are registered as full-time students prior to their 25th birthday, and 3) satisfy the requirements listed below during the applicable year.

Eligible dependent means:

  • the Participant's biological child;
  • children of the Participant's spouse or eligible same-sex domestic partner;
  • children for whom the Participant is the legal guardian or has legal custody; and
  • the Participant's adopted children and children who have been placed with the Participant for adoption;

provided that the following criteria are met:

Prior to each such child enrolling for the University's Dependent Tuition Benefits ("Benefits") and at such other times as are specified by the Office of Human Resources, the Participant certifies on the University's "Certification of Dependent Status" form ("Certification Form") that he or she:

  1. will claim each such child as a dependent on his or her federal income tax return for each calendar year during which the child receives a Benefit;
  2. agrees to provide the University with such federal income tax documentation evidencing compliance with the certification in (1) above as is acceptable to the University, and to provide such documentation at such time(s) as are specified by the University; and
  3. acknowledges that if he or she fails to provide the documentation in (b) above in a timely manner, the University will have the right, in its discretion: 1) to either issue the Participant a bill for the full costs of the Benefits provided to each such child, or to issue a corrected Internal Revenue Service Form W-2 to reflect any additional gross income that may be a result of the Benefits being provided to each such child; and/or 2) to take any other steps permitted by law to address the Participant's failure to satisfy the requirements of the Certification Form.

If a Participant is unable to satisfy the requirements in the preceding sentence because of a divorce or a legal separation from his or her spouse, the Office of Human Resources may allow an eligible child of the Participant to still be eligible for Benefits if (i) the Participant can provide such documentation as the Office of Human Resources considers to be satisfactory that the child is the Participant's dependent child within the meaning of Section 132(h)(2) of the Internal Revenue Code, and (b) the Participant and the child satisfy such other requirements regarding the Benefits as are specified by the Office of Human Resources.

An eligible dependent will not be eligible for Benefits beyond age 25; except that, if the dependent reaches his or her 25th birthday during a semester while registered for, and attending, classes as a full-time student, such dependent will be allowed to complete that semester. Benefits for eligible dependents who are age 24 or older could, in certain circumstances, be taxable.

An eligible dependent must also satisfy such other dependent requirements as are specified by the Office of Human Resources.

Full-Time Student Status

An eligible dependent is a full-time student if he or she is:

  1. registered for a minimum of 12 credit hours (6 credit hours, if enrolled at University College) of classes, and matriculated at, and attending, what the University determines is an accredited institution of learning (an accredited institution of learning is an institution that offers courses of study leading to an associate, bachelor or graduate degree); and
  2. considered by the University to be a full-time student at an accredited institution of learning, and is continuously registered as a full-time student.

A full-time student will continue to be eligible:

  1. during the period of time an accredited institution of learning recognizes as the recess period between semesters, provided the full-time student is enrolled for the next academic session;
  2. while participating in an institution's cooperative opportunity program; and
  3. during an institution's recognized legal holidays and vacation periods.

Spouses/Same-Sex Domestic Partners

While spouses/eligible same-sex domestic partners are not considered dependents under IRS regulations, they may qualify for Dependent Tuition Benefits under this Supplemental Policy if the spouse/eligible same-sex domestic partner:

  1. has been accepted as a matriculated full-time student;
  2. is registered for more than the six credit hours of classes per semester or summer session that are permitted by the Remitted Tuition policy; and
  3. satisfies the other applicable requirements for Dependent Tuition Benefits.

Human Resources should be contacted directly for evaluation of specific circumstances to determine eligibility of spouses/same-sex domestic partners for this benefit. Benefits for eligible same-sex domestic partners could, in certain circumstances, be taxable. A same-sex domestic partner will be required to satisfy the eligibility requirements for same-sex domestic partner benefits specified by the Office of Human Resources.

Policy Administration

Links to Procedures and Related Information

Date: February 2006


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