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Retiring from Vanderbilt

Action Items Checklist

  1. Notify your supervisor. Exempt employees should give four weeks notice and non-exempt employees should give two weeks notice.
  2. Decide whether you want to continue your health, dental, vision, Flexible Spending Account, if applicable, on a self-pay basis through COBRA. You will receive a COBRA packet from the COBRA Administrator, Benefit Express. You must complete the enrollment form and return it to Benefit Express by the deadline specified in your packet. If you do not submit a completed enrollment form by the specified date, you will lose your right to elect continued coverage.
  3. If you will be moving, please notify Human Resources of your change of address. Log in to Oracle Cloud, click on Personal Information in the navigator tab, then Edit, and enter your updated information (see Quick Reference Guide). You need a VUnetID and ePassword to use Oracle Cloud. If you no longer have a VUnetID, contact Human Resources.
  4. Return your Vanderbilt key(s), pagers, ID card, and any other Vanderbilt property to your departmental administrator on your last day of work.

Benefit Details

Health, Dental, Vision Coverage

  • Your health, dental and vision coverage ends on the last day of the month in which you retire from Vanderbilt.
  • A letter of credible coverage will be mailed to health plan participants after your coverage ends.
  • You may choose to continue your health, dental and/or vision coverage on a self-pay basis through COBRA for up to 18 months.
    • You have 60 days to elect COBRA coverage from the date of your COBRA-qualifying event.
    • Initial payment is required within 45 days of election date in order for benefits to be provided under COBRA.
  • Depending on your age at retirement, use the Online Claims & Services page of the Social Security website to find information on and apply for Social Security benefits.
  • If applicable, explore your Medicare options within 60 days of termination of your Vanderbilt Group Health Care coverage. Contact TN SHIP for free and objective counseling on Medicare and all related health insurance issues at 877.801.0044. Visit State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) for Medicare Participants for more information.
  • You may wish to research supplemental health alternatives (BlueCross 65, Healthspring, AARP, etc.)
  • The new state health exchanges may be an option to consider. Visit to research options and apply for coverage.

Flexible Spending Account (FSA)

  • Your contributions to your FSAs stop with your last paycheck (unless you are eligible and elect to continue contributions to your FSA under COBRA).
  • You can submit claims for expenses that you incurred on or prior to your last day of employment.
  • Claims are due by April 15, following the Plan Year of participation. You can file claims for eligible expenses incurred while you were in an eligible employment status by the filing deadline.  You can still use the Flexible Spending Account Reimbursement Request Form and submit your claims to Benefit Express by the deadline of the run-out period, which is April 15. To obtain claim forms and review your balance you must register at For tips on registering click here.
  • If you have a MasterCard for the Health Care Flexible Spending Account or Health Reimbursement Account, you must destroy the card and NOT use it past your termination date. You can file claims for eligible expenses incurred while you were in an eligible employment status by the filing deadline. If you use the MasterCard past your end of employment date, you are responsible to repay those charges. See the Summary Plan Description for more information.

Health Reimbursement Account

    • HRA funds must be used on or before your termination date, however you have until the following April to submit those claims for reimbursement. For more information visit the Health Reimbursement Account page.

Retirement Benefits

You may request a distribution or rollover of any or all of your Vanderbilt retirement funds at any time after you leave Vanderbilt or you may choose to leave your retirement funds with your investment companies. Effective October 15, 2015, Vanderbilt requires most former employees with balances less than $1,000 in the Vanderbilt University 403(b) Retirement Plan to roll their savings over to another plan or account, or take the balance as a distribution. Click here to learn more

You may contact your investment company to make an appointment to discuss the details of your account. These representatives will be able to view your account information and discuss your future distribution options with you.

To request a distribution or rollover:

  1. Contact your investment company(ies) to request the appropriate form(s).
    • Fidelity 800.343.0860 or
    • TIAA 800.842.2776 or
    • VALIC 800.448.2542 or
  2. For TIAA or VALIC, complete the form(s) and submit to Vanderbilt's Office of Benefits Administration for plan administrator approval. Be sure your form includes your spouse's notarized signature, if you are married. Spousal consent is required for all distributions, regardless of the amount. Fidelity forms should be returned directly to Fidelity.
  3. Mail TIAA or VALIC form(s) to: Benefits Administration, PMB #407704, 2301 Vanderbilt Place, Nashville, TN 37240-7704. Fidelity forms should be returned directly to Fidelity.
  4. The plan administrator will approve the request and forward it within two business days to the investment company(ies). (The plan administrator will contact you if the form is incomplete).


Faculty and staff who have reached the age of 59½ can process withdrawals against their retirement account. You are responsible for paying applicable penalties (and income taxes for pre-tax contributions) on the withdrawal amount. For more information on your options and things to consider, click  here .

Life Insurance

Your life insurance policy with MetLife ends on your last day of employment with Vanderbilt.

  • If applicable, you might consider converting your Group Term Life within 30 days of your last day of employment. Contact MetLife toll-free by calling 800.GETMET8, for more information.

Accrued Leave for Staff

  • PTO: You will be able to cash out all time from your PTO bank when leaving Vanderbilt.
  • Grandfathered sick time is not cashed out.

Volunteer Opportunities

  • Vanderbilt volunteers make a big difference every day for our patients, staff and visitors. Learn more about volunteering at Vanderbilt.
  • The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Vanderbilt provides adults aged 50 and over with educational programs, stimulating tours and trips, and cultural activities and events.

updated 3/2/2021