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Highline College Human Resources Payroll and Benefits

Hourly Employees

Benefits Eligibility

The Washington State Health Care Authority (HCA) has provided new guidelines for hourly employee benefits eligibility.  Employees who work 480 hours or more over a consecutive 6 month period become benefit eligible at the beginning of month 7.

An employee must report a minimum of eight hours in month 7 to receive the insurance benefits. After establishing eligibility, if an employee does not work a minimum of eight hours in any month, the employee will lose benefit eligibility and must reestablish eligibility by working a minimum of 480 hours or more over a new 6 consecutive month period.

These new guidelines become effective January 2010, but the period we use to calculate 480 hours is six months PRIOR to January 2010. Any employee who has worked 480 hours over the previous six months on January 2010, will be eligible for benefits.

As a reminder, the employer contribution for insurance premiums for non-student temporary hourly employees is funded by their employing department, and not through central funding. 

We have provided a Q&A sheet that may answer many of your questions.

We have also provided a table that summarizes the three main rules for monitoring hours for hourly employees.