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Dependent Enrollment

Students will be required to provide proof of  dependent status in order to enroll dependents on U-SHIP, according to University policy

Dependent Enrollment Instructions

In order to enroll dependents on U-SHIP, students must follow these steps:

  1. Enroll themselves during the open enroll period. 
  2. Once you've received confirmation of enrollment, send the completed Dependent Enrollment Form and provide the appropriate documents (see Acceptable Verification of Dependent Eligibility section below) to the student insurance advocates by email (

Students will only need to submit proof of dependent status once, but please note that students must act each year to enroll or waive U-SHIP for themselves and to enroll dependents. 

Eligible Dependents

Students enrolled in U-SHIP can choose to cover eligible dependents, including:

  • Same- or opposite-gender spouse or civil union partner
  • Same-gender domestic partner (only for domestic partnerships registered with the University prior to 7/1/17).
  • Children under the age of 26, including natural children, stepchildren, adopted children, or wards; any child named in a court order for whom you are legally responsible for providing coverage under the terms of a qualified medical child support order; and your eligible same-gender domestic partner’s child who depends on you for support and lives with you in a regular parent-child relationship. Note: If you would like to add a newborn child to your U-SHIP coverage, please complete the Petition to Add within 31 days of the child’s date of birth.
  • Unmarried eligible children over age 26 if the child is incapable of self-sustaining employment due to a mental or physical disability that occurred before attaining age 26, is dependent on you or your eligible spouse, civil union partner, or same-gender domestic partner for primary support and maintenance and is covered continuously by the plan prior to and beyond age 26.
  • Military veteran dependent children up to age 30 if the child has established residency in Illinois, served in the active or reserve components of the U.S. Armed Forces, and received a release of discharge other than a dishonorable discharge.

Acceptable Verification of Dependent Eligibility

Please make sure that the record is in English; translations of non-English documents must be certified.

Same and Opposite-Gender Spouse

  • Marriage certificate OR
  • Page one of your 2021 federal or state tax return (please cross out wage and social security number information) listing spouse/ partner

Same and Opposite-Gender Civil Union Partner

  • Certificate of Civil Union OR
  • Page one of your 2021 federal or state tax return (please cross out wage and social security number information) listing spouse/ partner

 Eligible Same-Gender Domestic Partner

  • Statement of Domestic Partnership approved from the University of Chicago prior to 7/1/2017

Child(ren) Under Age 26

One of the following:

  • Page one of your 2021 federal or state tax return listing the child(ren) as a dependent (please cross out wage and social security number information)
  • Birth certificate
  • Adoption documents
  • Other appropriate legal documents

For military veteran dependents, the “Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty” document is also required

Removal of Referral Requirement and Subsequent Change to Dependent Student Wellness Eligibility – Update

As a result of a recent Illinois Department of Insurance mandate eliminating referral requirements for insurance plans like U-SHIP that are considered “Preferred Provider Organizations” (PPOs), the following changes will go into effect September 1, 2022:

  • U-SHIP enrollees will no longer be required to obtain a referral from UChicago Student Wellness for medical or psychotherapy services outside of Student Wellness, and the $50 per visit non-referral deductible will be eliminated. 
  • Because dependents may now access outside providers with no deductible charge, dependents will no longer be eligible for services at UChicago Student Wellness, which is intended to serve enrolled students at the University. As such, students with dependents will no longer be charged the quarterly U-SHIP Dependent Fee.
  • U-SHIP dependents seeking care are encouraged to utilize in-network providers to receive maximum benefits under the plan.  The list of both medical (UHC Choice Plus) and behavioral health (Live & Work Well) in-network providers may be found on the UnitedHealthcare MyAccount under “Find Providers.” During the 2022-23 academic year, dependents who were previously seen by a Student Wellness provider will be able to contact the Student Wellness Care Navigation team for assistance with finding an off-campus provider.  You can reach the team by emailing or calling 773-834-WELL (773.834.9355).

Please also refer to this new FAQ for information regarding the removal of the referral requirement and how it impacts dependent eligibility for Student Wellness. 

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