Employee Benefits & Incentives

At CareFirst, we feel it is important to provide our associates with a comprehensive and competitive benefits package, which is an important part of your total compensation.

This is why our employee benefits program includes a wide range of options designed to meet your and your family’s wellness and financial needs.

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Managed health care is important to all of us. It is the focus of how we do business with our clients, and how we offer medical benefits to our associates. Currently the CareFirst medical options available to employees are:

Maryland, DC & Northern Virginia Associates:

  • CareFirst Healthy Blue Regional Option (Blue Choice coverage area)
  • CareFirst Healthy Blue National Option
  • CareFirst Healthy Blue CDH 1500 Option with HSA

West Virginia Associates:

  • CareFirst Healthy Blue National Option
  • CareFirst Healthy Blue CDH 1500 Option with HSA

The plans deliver health care primarily through managed networks of providers. Some plans also give you the flexibility to receive care from out-of-network providers. You can search for providers in the Provider Directory.

Benefits are available 31 days following your date of hire.

You may also enroll your eligible spouse and/or children for benefits provided they meet the eligibility requirements.

Planning for your family’s financial security in the event of an associate’s death is important. By planning ahead, associates can protect their family.

For eligible associates, the CareFirst program offers associates several life and accident insurance plans to help meet their family’s needs. Some are provided by the Company at no cost, while other plans are available at group rates.

The following survivor benefits and choices are available to eligible associates:

  • Basic Life Insurance for full-time associates (no cost)
  • Basic Accidental Death and Dismemberment for full-time associates (no cost)
  • Voluntary Life Insurance and Voluntary Spouse Life Insurance
  • Voluntary Dependent Child Life Insurance
  • Voluntary Accidental Death and Dismemberment for associate and eligible dependents
  • Business Travel Accident Insurance (no cost)

CareFirst offers a way for associates to pay for some of their expenses on a tax-free basis. The CareFirst Benefits program allows associates to set aside tax-free money in three types of Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs). The associates may then use the money to pay certain expenses. These accounts include:

  • Health Care Flexible Spending Account
  • Dependent Care Flexible Spending Account
  • Adoption Assistance Flexible Spending Account

CareFirst provides associates with a Paid Time Off (PTO) program to help meet associate needs for time away from work. The program consists of Paid Time Off Base (PTO-Base) and Paid Time Off – Purchased (PTO-Purchased). Under the Program, associates choose how to spend their time off – whether for sickness, child or elder care, personal appointments, vacation, an emergency, or other reasons.

In addition to PTO-Base, the Company offers benefits that can help associates meet other time off needs such as paid time off for jury duty and military leave, and paid holidays for full-time associates. Below are the CareFirst observed holidays:

  • New Year’s Day
  • Martin Luther King’s Birthday
  • President’s Day
  • Memorial Day
  • Independence Day
  • Labor Day
  • Thanksgiving Day
  • The Friday after Thanksgiving
  • Christmas Eve
  • Christmas Day
  • New Year’s Eve (half day)

CareFirst’s transit and parking benefits allow associates to set aside money on a pre-tax basis to pay for certain transportation costs of commuting to and from work. Associates may be able to use one or two accounts, depending on work location and how they commute to and from work. There are three types of accounts:

  • Subsidized Contract Parking
  • Public Parking
  • DC Mass Transit Transportation Accounts

There a specific eligibility requirements for each benefit.

FLEXPLUS benefits include a variety of additional benefit choices for associates and the associate’s family. These programs include:

  • Long term care insurance
  • Critical Illness insurance
  • Accident insurance
  • Group legal benefits
  • Automobile & homeowner insurance
  • 529 College plan

In addition to providing associates with a wide range of health, life, disability, and time off benefits, CareFirst offers associates a tuition assistance program to pay for college expenses.

Tuition assistance may be available to all full-time associates and by benefit-eligible associates in accordance with the program. Associates must be employed by the Company for six continuous months of service before receiving tuition assistance. Under the program, associates may apply to receive tuition assistance for courses taken for credit at an accredited college or university.

While an associate’s paycheck is the family’s current link to financial security, building retirement income for the future is just as important. CareFirst recognizes this and offers associates a 401(k) Plan to help meet future income needs.

The CareFirst 401(k) Plan gives associates the opportunity to build a financial future. With the Plan, associates can save money on a pre-tax basis for retirement to supplement the benefits provided by the Company’s contributions to the 401(k) Plan.

With the Plan, you may:

  • Choose between 1%-50% of total pay on a pre-tax basis, subject to the annual IRS limit
  • Receive Company matching contributions (50% of the first 6% of pay saved through the Plan)
  • Receive an automatic 401(k) Retirement Contribution equal to 2% of associate pay (all associates hired after 1/1/2009)
  • Choose from a variety of investment options including a Roth 401(k) option
  • Defer taxes on Company matching contributions, your own pre-tax contributions, and all earnings in the account until they are withdrawn
  • Monitor account online, by using toll-free telephone service, or through quarterly Participant statements

Associates are always 100% vested in any contributions they make to the Plan – after 3 Years of Vesting Service, associates become 100% vested in Company contributions.

Full-time and part-time benefit eligible associates are eligible to participate in the Plan from first day of employment.

CareFirst is committed to helping associates balance their work and life obligations. CareFirst complies with applicable Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) requirements – Federal FMLA and DC FMLA.

Federal FMLA – provides eligible associates with up to 12 weeks of certain job-protected,unpaid leave within a rolling 12-month period. Associates must be employed by CareFirst for 12 months and must have worked at least 1250 hours to be eligible for Federal FMLA.

DC FMLA – provides eligible associates with up to 16 weeks of certain job-protected, unpaid medical leave; and up to 16 weeks of certain job-protected unpaid family leave for specific family and medical reasons, within a rolling 24-month period. Associates must be employed by CareFirst for 12 months and must have worked at least 1000 hours to be eligible for DC FMLA.

The Company offers a comprehensive package of disability protection in the event of sickness, disability, pregnancy, or accidental injury that causes associates to be absent from work for an extended period of time. Regular, full-time and regular part-time associates who are scheduled to work 20 hours or more per week are eligible to participate in these plans. Coverage under the plans begins after associates complete 180 calendar days of employment.

Short Term Disability (STD) is a benefit plan that allows associates to be covered for salary continuation in the event of an eligible disability, for up to 25 weeks per calendar year.

Long Term Disability (LTD) is a fully-insured benefit plan designed to provide associates with a partial source of income in the event of a Long Term Disability, with payments beginning on the 181st consecutive calendar day of an eligible disability.

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CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield is an Equal Opportunity / Affirmative Action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or national origin, disability, or protected veteran status.