Tax Advantage Premium Plan (TAPP)

The Tax Advantage Premium Plan (TAPP) is technically called the California State University Premium Conversion Plan.  TAPP allows you to pay required health plan premiums.  All employees enrolled in a medical plan are enrolled in TAPP. Under TAPP, employee contributions toward medical plan premiums are deducted on a pre-tax basis.  Any such premiums for the CSU sponsored coverage you have selected will be deducted each month from your salary before federal and state income and Social Security/Medicare taxes are calculated and deducted.  This means you will not pay taxes on those premiums--they are converted to tax-free expenses.

Who is eligible?

You are eligible to participate in TAPP if you are an active CSU employee, enrolled in a CalPERS health plan.  

How do you enroll?

If you are a new employee enrolling in health coverage, you will be enrolled in TAPP automatically.  If you prefer to pay your premium from after-tax salary, you must notify Human Resources within 60 days of becoming eligible or during the open enrollment period.

Can I change my election?

Once your choice of pre-tax premium payment has become effective for the plan year, you can only make changes during the annual open enrollment period, unless you have a status change.   The open enrollment period is every September - October for coverage effective January 1 through December 31 of the following year. 

What is a Status Change Event?

Allowable status change events include:

  • Marriage, divorce, annulment or legal separation;
  •  Domestic Partnership or dissolution of domestic partnership;
  •  Death of spouse, domestic partner or dependent, (or loss of eligible dependent status);
  •  Birth, adoption or placement for adoption of a child;
  •  Change in custody that affects the child's eligibility for coverage under this plan or the plan of the child's parent;
  •  Termination or commencement of employment of employee, spouse, domestic partner or dependent;
  •  Commencement or return from an unpaid leave by employee, spouse, domestic partner or dependent;
  •  Change from full-time to part-time employment (or vice versa) by either you or your spouse or domestic partner; if that change affects your medical and/or dental coverage;
  •  Gain or loss of alternative non-CSU coverage;
  •  A significant change in the alternative non-CSU coverage;
  •  Entitlement to Medicare or Medicaid by an employee, spouse, domestic partner or dependent; or
  •  A change in worksite or residence resulting in eligibility or cessation of the employee's coverage under any health maintenance organization offered through the plan.

What happens if my premium changes or if I go on leave?

If your premium contributions change during the year, your TAPP deductions will be adjusted automatically for the change.  Contributions will continue during any paid leave, but will stop if your leave is unpaid.  If your unpaid leave qualifies for continuation of benefits under the Family and Medical Leave Act, you may continue your coverage during your leave on an after-tax basis.  Please contact Human Resources for more information.

What effect does TAPP have on my other benefits?

TAPP will have no impact on your CalPERS retirement nor on any other CSU-paid benefit.   However, depending on your salary, your Social Security Benefits at retirement may be reduced slightly, because you will have Social Security taxes on a lower wage.  Contact your local Social Security Office for more information.

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