Re-enrollment into Default Fund
Effective April 1, 2019, all participants who were enrolled in the MERS Health Care Savings Program prior to 1/1/2019, regardless of employment status, undergo a re-enrollment.
The MERS Retirement Strategy is a complete, diversified investment program offering a one-stop investment strategy based on your expected retirement date. Each Retirement Strategy fund has a "target date" in its name. The target date is the approximate year when you expect to retire and begin withdrawing from your account. As each participant may have a different expected retirement date, MERS uses an average normal retirement age of 60 as a default.
The asset allocation of each Retirement Strategy automatically changes over time for you – targeting higher growth during your working years and increasing security as you near and go through retirement. You may change that target date fund at any time, if your retirement goals change.
In preparation for the re-enrollment, there will be a plan-wide freeze on all HCSP accounts from 5:00 p.m. (EST) on Friday, March 22, 2019, through 5:00 p.m. (EST) on Friday, March 29, 2019. This means that your investments will remain in the market, however, no investment changes can be made during this time.
Your funds will be invested in the Retirement Strategy as of market open, 8:00 a.m. (EST) on Monday, April 1, 2019 and you will receive confirmation via email (if we have one on file) and in your myMERS account. After this time, you can make any investment changes you would like going forward.
We recognize that some participants may prefer to stay in their current investment allocation and therefore we are offering two options to opt out of the re-enrollment.
Option 1 (preferred method):
Prior to 4:00 pm EST on Friday, March 22, 2019, log in to your myMERS account and make any change to your HCSP allocations, including re-entering your current allocations (if you'd like to keep your assets in the funds they are in). By doing so, your set allocations will be excluded from the re-enrollment on April 1, 2019. You will receive a confirmation of your choice.
Contact the MERS Service Center to request a paper Opt-Out form. You will need to complete and return the form before March 22, 2019 in order for your choice to be processed before the re-enrollment takes place. If we receive your form after this date, your funds will be reallocated to the Retirement Strategy on April 1, 2019, and MERS will contact you to review your investment options.
Investment Cost Reduction and Fee Removal
We are pleased to inform you that due to operational efficiencies and continued growth, we reduced operational costs on your account by two basis points ($0.20/$1,000 invested) and removed the $24/year administrative fee that was accessed.
New Enhancements to Claims Administration
Affects terminated participants only
Effective January 1, 2019, Alerus Retirement and Benefits is the new administrator for HCSP claims. This change only affects participants who have access to utilize their Health Care Savings Program account funds – typically this means participants who have terminated from their HCSP-providing employer and have an account balance.
You can find more information on using your HCSP account in the HCSP Handbook.
If you have any questions on this transition, please contact the MERS Service Center at 800.767.MERS (6377).