Human Resource Services

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My Benefits | A Death Occurs

A Death Occurs

A Qualified Life Event

Personal Information

After a death there are many things that may need to be updated:

Personal information such as name, address, and emergency contacts can be updated by logging into MyUNIverse and choosing Update My Personal Information.

Tax information can be updated by logging into the eBusiness Suite and selecting W-4 Form Employee Withholding Allowances under the UNI Employee Self Service link.

Principal Financial Group offers free access to the Will and Document Center from ARAG. The center will help guide you through will and power of attorney preparation. To take advantage of this benefit, visit Select the "New Account" button. Input the university's account number: N10962. Follow the online instructions from there. If you have any questions, contact the toll-free customer care number: 1-800-546-3718.


Acceptable Documentation must be provided to support a change in benefits.

  • Death Certificate, or
  • Certified copy of the public record of death, or
  • Certified copy of a coroner's certificate

Health, Dental, & Vision Coverage

You must remove a dependent from your health, dental, and vision plans after they have passed away. You may also change from one plan to another, and may also add coverage for yourself and dependents if needed. The change will be effective the first of the next month in which the event took place. Any other changes to your plan must be made during the open enrollment period. To make a change due to a qualifying life event, and submit necessary documentation, please log into Benefits Self-Service.

Flex Spending – Health Care and Dependent Care

If you need to make a change or enroll in health care or dependent care flex spending due to a qualifying life event, you do so through Benefits Self-Service. Your deductions will start the first of the month after the election is made.

Life and/or Voluntary Life Insurance

Human Resource Services will notify Principal Financial Group of the death. Principal Financial Group will then reach out to the beneficiary on file if there are any questions. Once Principal Financial Group has been notified by UNI, you may reach them via phone if you have any questions at 800-986-3343.


If you need to update your life insurance beneficiaries due to a qualifying life event you can do so by logging into Benefits Self-Service.

For IPERS beneficiaries, please fill out the IPERS Enrollment and Beneficiary Designation form and submit to IPERS at the address on the form.

To update your TIAA beneficiaries please log onto the TIAA website and update your beneficiaries accordingly.


  • Funeral Leave
    Staff members may use up to 3 days of earned sick leave per occurrence when death occurs in their *immediate family.
  • Pallbearer Leave
    Staff members may use up to 1 day of earned sick leave per occurrence when serving as a pallbearer or funeral attendant for someone who is not a member of their *immediate family.

*Immediate family is defined, and limited to, the staff member’s spouse, children, grandchildren, foster children, stepchildren, legal wards, parents, grandparents, foster parents, stepparents, brothers, foster brothers, stepbrothers, sons-in-law, brothers-in-law, sisters, foster sisters, stepsisters, daughters-in-law, sisters-in-law, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, first cousins, corresponding relatives of the faculty or staff member's spouse, and other persons who are members of the staff member's household.

If you have additional questions, please contact Human Resource Services at 319-273-2423 or email your inquiry to and a member of the Benefits team will respond.

Grief Support

Grief support services are offered at no additional cost to you.

  • Employee and Family Resources (Employee Assistance Program- EAP)
    • Counselors are available by phone for confidential questions and support at any time, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call to set up an in-person appointment or speak to a counselor over the phone. In-person appointments are set up quickly with counselors conveniently located near your home or workplace. EFR has a large network of providers so they are able to connect you with a provider most suitable for you and in a location that is most convenient for you.
    • Contact Information for Scheduling an Appointment:
      800-327-4692 (Nationwide, toll-free)
      Send a Message to an EAP Counselor
  • Principal Financial Group Beneficiary Support Services
    • Principal offers grief support for a spouse or loved one. Licensed counselors at Magellan Healthcare offer the following services:
      • 24/7 access to confidential guidance and coping strategies.
      • Personal coaching over the phone or video teleconference.
      • Local legal and community resource referrals.
        • Participants are referred to a local lawyer. A consultation is available by phone or in person, and there is no charge for up to one one-hour consultation per topic per year. Additional legal services are available at discounted rates.
      • Private self-screening for depression.
      • Plus, employees also have access to online resources, such as:
        • Health and wellness resources
        • Legal tools and forms
        • Self-assessments for grief, depression and stress
        • Resources for talking to children about death
        • Parenting and eldercare support

Crisis Response for Supervisors, Managers, Directors, Department Heads, & Deans

If an employee death occurs, Employee and Family Resources has a crisis response program ready to provide assistance. If you feel crisis response is something you need for your department, or you have questions, please call Human Resource Services at 319-273-2423 to discuss options.

Other incidents that may require a need for crisis response:

  • On-site accidents
  • Assaults
  • Robbery
  • Workforce changes

At any time, please feel free to reach out to the benefits team at If it is about a situation, please do not provide specific details in the email message.