OPEN ENROLLMENT - Plan Year 2021
Open Enrollment is your one time of the year to verify your personal benefits information, make any changes you wish to your plan elections, enroll in a flexible spending account (FSA) and add or remove dependents.
Enrollment requires using Employee Self-Service (ESS).You may also log in to ESS from a computer outside of the County's network. Required documentation must be scanned and uploaded to ESS in order to complete enrollment for dependents. For assistance with logging into ESS, please contact your agency's Help Desk.
If you wish to participate in a FSA for the 2021 plan year, you MUST enroll during Open Enrollment. Payroll deductions will be taken over 26 pay periods. Remember: FSA enrollment does not roll over from year to year.
Open Enrollment is only available October 1st through October 31st, so please be sure to make changes to benefits elections for you and your dependents during this time.
If you miss this window of opportunity, the only changes you will be able to make to your current benefit elections will be in conjunction with a "qualifying life event" like marriage or the birth of a child.
How to Enroll
Enrollment Resource Links:
- Employee Self Service (in office)
- Employee Self Service (from home)
- Commuter Benefit
- Cook County Voluntary Benefits
- Deferred Compensation
REMEMBER: Any changes you make to plan elections during the Open Enrollment period go into effect the start of the new plan years (December 1st for all benefits except FSA, which is January 1st). If you enroll in the health care or dependent care FSA, deductions will begin with the first pay check of the calendar year.
Virtual Open Enrollment Sessions
Session 1: Open Enrollment 101: Employee Self Service
Watch a recording of the live events, hosted by the Employee Benefits staff through Microsoft Teams for an overview of your benefits plan options, Open Enrollment schedule and a video of the Open Enrollment process using Employee Self Service.
- October 7 - 11:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. (Recording)
- October 7 - 3:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. (Recording)
- October 8 - 7:30 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. (Recording)
Session 2: Open Enrollment - So Many Choices and Questions!
During these sessions, hosted on Microsoft Teams, Employee Benefits staff will answer your questions. A representative from Blue Cross Blue Shield also will participate to answer your questions about such topics as medical plan comparisons, selecting a primary care physician, and wellness resources.
- October 14, 2020 - 11:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
- October 21, 2020 - 3:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
- October 28, 2020 - 7:30 a.m. to 8:00 a.m.
To attend these events, you must sign up in advance by clicking here for one of the sessions above. Space is limited.
Online Open Enrollment Assistance
If you need assistance with enrollment, click here to schedule an appointment with a member of the Employee Benefits staff.
Additional Digital Resources
Blue Cross Blue Shield
- Go digital with the BCBSIL mobile app!
- How to read your Explanation of Benefits
- What does in-network mean?
- How do I change my Primary Care Physician?
- Understanding Health Plans and Costs
Cook County Deferred Compensation
- Get to know our digital tools
- Save time & get your Rx online
- Compare Rx costs & coverage
- Stay on track with automatic refills
- Tracking your Rx mail order
- Rx coverage & prior authorizations