The Sick Leave Insurance Program (SLIP) offers retirement-eligible employees an option for using all or part of their unused sick leave balance to pay the state share of their group health insurance premiums after they retire until they become eligible for Medicare (usually at age 65.) You must be the policyholder of a State’s health and dental plan at the time of enrollment.

mature couple smiling and looking at a laptop

For general information on continuing insurance benefits at retirement, review the DAS Retiree Health Insurance webpage.

Sick Leave Insurance Program (SLIP) Calculation Worksheet (Excel)

Sick Leave Insurance Program (SLIP) Calculation Worksheet (Google)



Wellmark Application

Program Overview

You are able to use the value of your accrued sick leave balance at the time of retirement to pay the state share of group health insurance premium. Your sick leave hours are converted into dollars based on a percentage of your sick leave hours at retirement.


State employees eligible for the SLIP program are:

  • Executive branch employees except for SPOC-covered employees
  • Community Based Corrections employees (not administered by centralized payroll)

This program does NOT include:

  • Elected officials
  • Board of Regents employees
  • Executive branch employees represented by SPOC

Similar programs are offered to Judicial Branch and Legislative Branch state employees.

In addition to being in an eligible class of employees:

  • You must have attained at least age 55 by your retirement date.
  • You must be eligible for and receive a monthly retirement benefit from the Iowa Public Employees’ Retirement System. If you rescind your retirement and do not receive a pension benefit, you will not be considered to have taken retirement and will not be eligible for this program.
  • The value of your converted sick leave balance must be greater than $2,000 PLUS the cost of at least one month of the state share of your group health insurance premium.
  • Be the current policyholder of a State-sponsored plan. The policyholder of a State’s health or dental plan is the employee or retiree who elected the health or dental coverage.

Sick Leave Conversion Chart

Your accrued sick leave hours are converted into dollars based on the following table.

Sick Leave Conversion Chart
If the sick leave balance is: The conversion rate is:
Zero to 750 hours 60% of value
Over 750 hours to 1,500 hours 80% of value
Over 1,500 hours 100% of value

SLIP Calculation

Following are the steps to calculate your SLIP account.

  1. Identify the total number of hours of accrued sick leave on the last day of work.
  2. Multiply your sick leave hours balance at retirement by your regular hourly rate of pay at retirement to get the total sick leave balance dollar value.
  3. Subtract the $2,000.00 sick leave payout from the total sick leave balance dollar value. (You are paid up to $2,000.00 in unused sick leave on your final pay warrant upon retirement.)
  4. Use the table in the previous section to determine the sick leave conversion rate. The conversion rate is based on your sick leave balance on your last day of work.
  5. Multiply the remaining amount times the conversion rate.
  6. The result is the SLIP account balance in dollars (not hours).

The final calculated dollar value will be credited to your SLIP account.

SLIP Calculation Example

Below is an example of how SLIP account is calculated.

Assumption: An employee has a sick leave balance of 1,000 hours and an hourly rate of $30.00 at retirement.

Multiply the total number of sick leave hours by the regular rate of pay (1,000 * $30.00). $30,000.00
Subtract $2,000 from the total. -$2,000.00
Subtotal $28,000.00
Multiply the remaining amount times the conversion rate (80% x $28,000).
(Conversion rate for sick leave balance between 750 – 1,500 hours is 80%)
Credited to the retiree's SLIP account $22,400.00

Applying for the SLIP

Complete the Sick Leave Insurance Enrollment Form and any other forms applicable. Submit the completed agreement and other forms to your department's personnel assistant prior to your retirement date.

Health Options Available to SLIP Retirees

The State offers SLIP retirees the following health options.

  • Iowa Choice
  • National Choice

For general information about state of Iowa's health insurance plans, go to the DAS Health Insurance website.

SLIP Account Process

Each month, your former department pays the state share of the selected group health insurance premium from your SLIP account.

You are responsible for the additional premiums associated with the retiree share.

Wellmark will send you an invoice each month for the employee's portion of the premium, if applicable, or you can elect to have the premium automatically deducted from your bank account.

Income Tax Considerations

The value of the state share of the premium paid from your SLIP account is not subject to federal and state income taxes. Taxes are still paid on the amount of any vacation payout along with the $2,000 of the sick leave payout.

SLIP Coverage Ends

You are eligible to participate in the SLIP program until:

  • Your sick leave fund has been depleted
  • ​You become eligible for Medicare
  • You return to permanent State of Iowa employment
  • You cease participation in the state group health insurance program
  • You fail to pay any employee share of the premium
  • You die (benefits in this program are not transferable)

Note: Dollars in your SLIP account are not transferable.

Reemployment with the State of Iowa Executive Branch

A SLIP retiree cannot return to permanent State employment and continue to receive SLIP benefits. A SLIP retiree who wishes to become reemployed with the State in a permanent position waives all current and future SLIP benefits. You are eligible to return to state government once your SLIP benefits cease.

A SLIP retiree may be hired in a temporary position for a fixed term appointment if the hiring authority has received approval from the Department of Administrative Services. Approval will be for short-term situations only. Long-term continued employment in a temporary status will not be permitted. A SLIP Retiree Rehire Authorization form (CFN 552-0719) must be completed and submitted to your DAS Personnel Officer.

A SLIP retiree is not prohibited from performing services for the State if the SLIP retiree:

  • Is an independent contractor
  • Is employed by an entity that contracts with the State, or
  • Is employed by a temporary placement agency.

If you are a SLIP retiree from the Judicial branch, contact your Judicial Branch Human Resources Manager if you have any questions about reemployment.

Check with IPERS regarding their rules about returning to IPERS covered employment. If you become ineligible for IPERS, you will also be ineligible for SLIP.

For More Information

For general questions, call your department's human resources associate.

  • For IPERS questions, call 800-622-3849 or 515-281-0020.
  • For income tax questions, call the Department of Administrative Services, State Accounting Enterprise at 515-281-3976.
  • For health insurance questions related to the Sick Leave Insurance Program, call the Department of Administrative Services, Human Resources Enterprise at 866-895-2464. 

The Department of Administrative Services – Human Resources Enterprise is providing this information about the State of Iowa’s benefits. The information on this web page is subject to change. Nothing herein shall be construed as a guarantee of benefits. This webpage is not a complete description of the State of Iowa’s benefit plans. Nothing on this web page supersedes or changes any of the terms and conditions of any plan documents, insurance policies, or other legal agreements. If the wording in this web page contradicts any plan documents, laws, regulations, administrative rules, insurance policies, or other legal agreements, the wording in the official documents and agreements will govern.

Updated 4/28/2023