Research Foundation Regular Employees

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The Research Foundation for SUNY (RF) offers an array of benefits to eligible employees. These benefits can add an exceptional value to your employment.

Open Enrollment Dates

The open enrollment period for health benefits, voluntary short-term disabiliity insurance and Flexible Spending Accounts is Nov. 1 — Nov. 30, 2022.

Make your changes online at Changes will take effect January 1, 2023.

Please be sure to retain a copy of your confirmation statement when completing your enrollment.

How To Enroll In Your Benefits

Download RF SUNY Benefits Bulletin

RF SUNY Self Service

Download the Employee Self Service Guide

The RF Employee Self Service portal is where you can manage most of your employment tasks online. Start by setting up your account:

  1. Go to account set up
  2. Using the RF ID Number you were given when you were employed, create a password

The Research Foundation Employee Self Service portal offers many features:

  • Ability to quickly and accurately do tasks online, such as:
    • Enroll for benefits
    • Enter dependents and beneficiaries
    • Update your contact information
  • Easy access to your direct deposit payslips, paycheck stubs, tax forms and current benefits enrollment

Your Benefits

Medical,Dental,Vision Flex Spending Retirement Disability Life Insurance


The Research Foundation offers a suite of retirement benefits to employees.

Basic Retirement Plan

The Research Foundation's basic retirement plan is a defined contribution plan designed to satisfy the requirements of Section 401 (a) of the Internal Revenue Code. RF contracts with TIAA-CREF to provide services under this plan. Once you have met the eligibility requirement, The Research Foundation will begin contributing to your account. To meet the eligibility requirements, RF employees working the required hours of service (975 hours of service for a 37.5- hour week or 1,000 hours for a 40-hour week) will participate in the Basic Retirement plan upon completing a waiting period of one year of qualified service. The contribution rate is based on your hire date.

Prior Service Credit

The Research Foundation recognizes employment with other organizations in meeting service requirements for participation and vesting in the basic retirement plan. Continuous, non-student employment with an eligible employer immediately preceding your Research Foundation appointment will be considered for qualified service credit. To be regarded as qualified service, your employment must be within the United States and have terminated no more than one (1) year before your Research Foundation appointment begins.

Optional Retirement Plan

The Optional Retirement plan allows you to supplement your retirement savings with pretax, biweekly contributions to a retirement annuity account or mutual fund accounts. All contributions to the plan are immediately vested. The Optional Retirement Plan is a defined contribution plan under section 403(b) of the Internal Revenue Code (IRC). Your contributions fully fund the benefit.

Suppose you are an active non-student employee of the RF (including employees who are paid hourly). In that case, you can participate in the Optional Retirement Plan regardless of the hours worked. There is no waiting period, and you do not have to be a vested participant in the Basic Retirement Plan. Deductions begin on the payroll in which you elect to participate.

Retiree Health Insurance

The RF will continue your Health Care coverage after you retire if you meet the following eligibility requirements and you pay the required premium.

  • At least age 55
  • Be enrolled in the RF Health Care plan when you retire
  • Have completed a minimum of 10 years of full-time service or the equivalent in part-time service at 50 percent or more of full-time effort (e.g., a person working 50 percent of full time for 20 years would qualify) with the RF immediately before you retire
  • Be continuously employed by the RF during the one-year period immediately before retirement
  • Enroll in Original Medicare Parts A and B when you reach age 65, but not part D.

If you do not meet these eligibility requirements, you may continue coverage under the RF Health Care plan under COBRA prior to age 65.

The RF will continue Health Care coverage for your eligible dependents if they have been covered under your plan for at least one full year before you retire. No new dependents can be added to your coverage after you retire. If you die, health insurance for your covered dependents will continue for the remainder of their lifetime, while your dependents remain eligible and pay the required premium.

Health Coverage
If you were hired: Up to age 65:
Before January 1, 1986 The RF will pay the full premium for your coverage.   You must enroll in Medicare Part A and B when you reach age 65 and pay the Part B premium
On or after January 1, 1986 and were eligible to retire on or before December 31, 2011 Until you become covered by Medicare, you are responsible for the same share of the premium as an active employee.  Payment details will be provided at the time of retirement.   At age 65, the RF will pay the full premium for your coverage once you become covered by Medicare Parts A and B.   You must pay the Part B premium.
On or after January 1, 1986, and were not eligible to retire on or before December 31, 2011 The amount you pay will vary with the number of full-time equivalent years of service you have at retirement.  For those age 65 or over, premiums will be offset in part by the standard cost of Medicare Part B.

For All Retirees At Age 65

Medicare Part A & B becomes your primary insurance coverage at age 65. That standard monthly rate is $121.80.

Retirees at age 65 will work with AON Retiree Health Exchange to select a secondary insurance plan. You will pay your monthly premium directly to the insurance carrier you select and submit for reimbursement through a Health Reimbursement Account (HRA) provided by The Research Foundation. This is a yearly subsidy based on your years of service. If you have any funds remaining in your HRA account at the end of the year, this amount will roll over to the following year.

HRA Contribution
Employees Hired before 1/1/2012 - Annual HRA Contribution
Service Category
Retiree Spouse
10-14 Years $2,221 $0
15-19 Years $3,953 $144
20+ Years $4,619 $3,375
All current retirees under pre-2012 rules and those eligible to retire under pre-2012 rules $4,619 $4,619
HRA Contribution
Employees Hired on or after 1/1/2012 - Annual HRA Contribution
Service Category
Retiree Spouse
10-14 Years $0 $0
15-19 Years $2,919 $144
20+ Years $4,619 $3,375

Planning for Retirement

Planning for retirement ahead of time will ease your transition from active employment into retirement. You should begin exploring your income options at least once a year by working with TIAA-CREF.

As a member of TIAA-CREF, you may call 1-800-842-2776 to request retirement income estimates. You may also wish to meet with a TIAA-CREF Representative. You may call 1-800-732-8353.

You may also schedule a time to meet with a member of the benefits team by contacting us.

Additional Benefits for Retired RF Employees

Library Privileges

All retired faculty and staff continue to have all library privileges automatically. If you run into any issues with these benefits, you may contact:

Coordinator of Bison Billing and Borrowing
118 Capen Hall
North Campus
(716) 645-5950

Membership in the Emeritus Center for Faculty and Staff

The Emeritus Center was established in 1977 to provide all university faculty and staff who retire with a means that would enable them to continue their relationship with the University community. Human Resource Services provides the names and addresses of all retirees to the Membership Chairperson of the Emeritus Center. For more information, you may contact:

Membership Chairperson
Goodyear Hall
1st Floor Lounge
South Campus
(716) 829-2271

Access to Recreation Facilities

The UB Division of Athletics provides access to recreation facilities at a discount for retirees. For more information, you may contact:

Marcus Hutchins
152 Alumni Arena
North Campus
(716) 645-6871

Access to UB's Communications Network

Retirees may continue to have access to UBmail. For problems, you may contact:

The RF Benefits Team

Contact an Expert

Sean O'Brien.

Sean O'Brien

RF Benefit Services

Phone: 716-645-4485


Manage Your Benefits

After you've made your initial benefits selections, whether you have declined any of our coverage options or not, there are some special circumstances in which you can make changes to your pretax benefits. For your health insurance, and dental insurance you will need a qualifying event to make changes without penalty. You may change your vision care coverage anytime during the year.

A qualifying event is a change in your status or your dependent’s status that permits a change to be made in pretax health insurance elections outside of the annual Open Enrollment period. The change in status must result in a gain or loss of coverage or coverage options. The election change must be consistent with the change in status, and must be made within 60 days of the event. To make changes to your benefits any time other than open enrollment you will need to submit an RF Benefits Enrollment Form to the benefits team along with supporting documentation of your qualifying event. (e.g. birth certificate, marriage license, statement of loss of insurance)

You have 60 days from the day of any qualifying event or special enrollment period to submit the necessary documentation.

You may also make changes to your health insurance, dental insurance, vision care coverage, and flexible spending accounts during open enrollment for the following plan year.