Composite Benefit Rate (CBR)

As part of the UCPath implementation, UCSC is transitioning to a Composite Benefit Rate (CBR) structure. This new structure will provide a simplified and predictable methodology for forecasting employee benefit costs charged to the University.

This transition does not affect how or the amount individual employees pay for their benefits. This only changes how fringe benefits are charged within the University.

Group Rates by Fiscal Year (Updated 6/15/2020)

group rates by fiscal year
Group  Employee Class Jan.1, 2020 to June 30,2020 FY2020-21 
1 Faculty and Other Academic 38.6% 38.9%
2 Faculty Summer Salary 11.1% 11.1%
3 Non-Full Benefits 8.8% 8.9%
4 Post-Doc 20.8% 21.4%
5 Staff, Exempt and Non-Exempt 50.7% 51.3%
6 Students 2.1% 2.1%

Frequently Asked Questions

Will the composite rates affect an employee's cost of/eligibility for benefits?

No. The employee's cost and eligibility for benefits will not be affected when UCSC transitions to the new CBR structure. This new structure only changes how fringe benefits are charged within the University.

What if a person is eligible for full benefits, but not appointed at 100% time?

The benefit cost for an employee is the applicable rate multiplied by gross salary. If the appointment percentage is lower, the salary is lower and, thus, the benefit cost will be lower, even if the employee receives full benefits. This is a considerably simpler calculation and also reduces benefit expenses for part-time employees as compared to the old method of calculating benefit costs.

What fringe benefit components are included in the composite rates?

Benefits Administration, Dental, Disability, Employee Support Programs, FICA Tax, Life Insurance, Medical, Retiree Health Benefits, Matching Retirement Contribution, Senior Management Supplement, Unemployment Insurance, Vision, and Workers' Compensation.

What salaries are included in the base that will be subject to CBR?

CBRs are applied to all components of pay except honoraria, perquisites, allowances, incentive payments, and vacation leaves.

Does the "Students" CBR apply to both undergraduate and graduate students?

Yes, the "Students" CBR applies to both undergraduate and graduate students. Note that this applies to fringe benefits, not fee remission of GSHIP, which is charged separately.

Are graduate student tuition remission, GAEL, and paid leave included in CBR?

The process to charge graduate student tuition remission is unchanged, and will be the actual costs for each student employee. Likewise, the processes for GAEL, vacation leave assessment (VLA), and sabbaticals are unchanged. There will be separate GAEL and vacation leave assessment rates as well as a UCRP supplemental interest assessment (RPNI).

What factors determine which CBR group an employee falls under?

An employee will fall into a CBR group based on 1) Employee Class, 2) Eligibility Configuration (BELI equivalent), 3) Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), and 4) Job Code

Are these benefit rates based on appointment percentage as well as the employment/title category or will the rates hold steady at the given CBR percentages regardless of the appointment? For example, would an employee with a 50% appointment have the same benefit rate as a 100% appointment?

The rate is based on job code and benefit eligibility and is assessed against the gross salary. While the rate would not change for a 50% or a 100% appointment, the actual charge would be half for the 50% appointment.

If I hire a prospective Assistant Researcher who currently has his own medical insurance, will the composite rate be reduced based on this or will it remain the same?

CBR groups are assigned using Employee Class, Eligibility Configuration (BELI equivalent), FLSA status and Job Code. If someone waives their UCSC medical insurance, it will not affect the CBR group or rate that they are assigned.

If two employees are married, which CBR category would determine the benefit rates? Are they both calculated/charged according to the respective FAU as individual employees or would one be in the "Non-Full Benefits" rate?

The employees would each be assigned to the employee class that is appropriate for the terms of their employment. The marriage would have no impact on the CBR rate.

I have a PI that would like to hire a Professional Researcher (non-senate academic) at 60% time. He resides in, and will collaborate from, Canada and will opt out of health insurance. Should the PI be considered "Faculty and Other Academic" or "Non-Full Benefits"?

Opting out of health insurance would have no impact on the CBR rate. The rate will depend on the terms of employment.

In the example above, what will impact the "Non-Full Benefits"? Percentage of appointment? Title Codes? Please provide direction as to what defines the CBR group?

In UCPath, CBR groups are assigned using Employee Class, Eligibility Configuration (BELI equivalent), and Job Code. As positions are assigned an Employee Class, they are also assigned the appropriate CBR for that class. It is possible for the Eligibility Configuration to override this initial mapping and assign an individual into the "Non-Full Benefits" rate group if the Eligibility Configuration is set to do that. Ultimately, it would not depend on the Title Code of the position, but rather the terms of employment.

How will the new rate affect existing contracts and grants?

We understand that many researchers have multi-year awards and proposals which were approved with different fringe benefit rates than the CBRs. The campus is developing a short-term mitigation plan to assist existing multi-year research contract & grants experiencing significant financial hardship created by the transition to CBRs. Additional information will be available once the mitigation plan is finalized.

Who do I contact if I have additional questions about the CBR?

Can't find what you are looking for on the CBR website? Please email: ask-cbr-group@ucsc.edu