Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Retirement
IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT FOR ALL RETIREES
Effective January 1, 2005, Plans X & Z will be merged into one plan (which will be referred to as Plan X). Coverage under the Fund's Mail Service Maintenance Prescription Drug Program will no longer be optional. All retiree's covered under Plan X will automatically be covered under the Mail Service Maintenance Prescription Drug Program.
Due to increasing health care costs and a decline in work hours, The Boilermakers National Health & Welfare Fund has deemed in necessary to make the following changes for retiree health care coverage effective January 1, 2005:
When do my monthly insurance premium payments begin? Will these payments be deducted directly from my pension check, or do I have to send payment to the Health & Welfare Department?
Your insurance premium payments will begin after your bank hours have run out. Payment schedules and requirements are detailed as follows:
When a retiree starts on the COBRA plan, he is required to send in a cashier’s check or money order for the first two months of coverage. After that, COBRA payments are due on the 15th of the month prior to the month that you are paying coverage for.
Example: payment for January 2005 coverage would be due by December 15, 2004.
COBRA requires all payments be made cashier’s check or money order (no personal checks are accepted).
When a retiree starts on Plan X, he is again required to send in a check, cashier’s check, or money order for the first two months of coverage. After the first two months of coverage are paid for, the retiree can elect to have premiums deducted directly from his pension check or make monthly payments out-of-pocket. In order for premiums to be deducted from the retiree’s pension check, he must first authorize the International to do so (the authorization for pension deduction can be found on the insurance enrollment forms). If a retiree decides at a later date to have his insurance deducted directly from his pension, he will need to contact the International’s Self-Pay Retiree Department at (866) 342-6555 and ask for either Phyliss Smith, Mary Zeller, or Barb Oakman.
What is the amount of the life insurance benefit after retirement?
There is no life insurance after retirement. At death after retirement, the pensioner’s (whose pension was based on ten or more years of Pension Credit) beneficiary will receive a $6,000.00 Post Retirement Death Benefit.
How is the Annuity paid out?
The Annuity is paid out in the manner that you select – either a lump sum or monthly payments.
How is an outstanding loan handled when eligible for withdrawal?
It is cancelled. The remaining account balance is subject to taxes and any applicable late fees of the loan are deducted.
Does the Annuity pay yield up to one’s retirement date or should I wait until the end of a quarter to retire?
Yield is calculated on your account balance at the beginning of the prior quarter, prior to withdrawal.
Example: If you stop working in February 2004, yield is calculated based on the account balance as of December of 2003.
What Federal tax requirements are there for my Pension? Must I withhold a certain percentage from my check?
The Pension Department will withhold Federal taxes from your monthly pension check. You can also pay your taxes yourself if you wish.
Frequently Asked Questions Regarding the Supplemental Health & Welfare Fund
Revised November 6, 2002
What are Supplemental Health & Welfare benefits for retirees?
Supplemental Health & Welfare benefits are designed to help normal or early retirees with their health care coverage upon their retirement from the International Brotherhood of Boilermakers. Eligible retirees will be reimbursed for a portion, if not all, of the total amount paid by them to maintain their health care coverage.
Who is eligible for reimbursement of self-paid premiums?
The following criteria needs to be met in order to qualify for Supplemental Health & Welfare benefits:
You must have retired as a normal or early retiree from the International Brotherhood of Boilermakers on or after July 1, 1997.
You must have accrued at least 8,000 contribution hours in covered employment under this plan.
You must have contributed to this fund.
Spouses are eligible as well; however, their benefits will cease upon the death of the primary recipient.
What premiums are reimbursable?
The Fund will reimburse premiums paid to the International in order for a retiree to maintain their health care coverage (COBRA or Plan X premiums), as well as premiums paid to qualified and reputable health insurance programs (i.e. Blue Cross Blue Shield, Medicare, etc.). At this time, prescriptions and co-payments are not covered by the Fund.
How much is reimbursable?
The overall dollar amount to be reimbursed to retirees is determined at the end of each claim period by the Fund Trustees. The total money to be reimbursed for each claim period may vary depending on the amount of claims received and the amount of money contributed to the Fund for that particular claim period. The decision of the Trustees is final.
What information do I need to send to the hall in order to receive benefits?
In order to receive benefits, you must forward payment information to the hall. We will accept the following as proof of payment:
If you are on COBRA or Plan X:
All you have to do is sign the claim form for the claim period in question and return it to the union hall. The International will advise us as to how much you paid to maintain your health care coverage for that period, so long as you have filled out a HIPAA Authorization Form. We will in turn let you know how much the International has advised us that you have paid, in order to avoid discrepancies. If there are any discrepancies, please contact Kathy at the union hall immediately so we can resolve the situation in a timely manner.
If you or your spouse are on Medicare:
You will need to go to your local Social Security Office and have them print out the total amount of money deducted from your social security benefit to pay for Medicare for the given claim period and the date that this amount became effective. (All of this information can be documented on their form #SSA-2458). Please make sure that the office includes their address and phone number on the information they provide to you. Forward this information, along with your signed claim form, to the union hall.
If you or your spouse is on any other insurance plan:
You will need to provide one of the following:
Copies of your original bill(s) for the current claim period, along with copies of your cancelled check(s) covering that bill(s)
A letter from your insurance provider, written on their letterhead, stating the total amount of premiums paid by you to maintain your health care coverage for the given claim period.
Forward this information, along with your signed claim form, to the union hall.
How often will reimbursement checks be issued?
Checks are issued twice a year according to the payment schedule below:
Reminder: Contact the union hall as soon as possible if you have a change of address or telephone number. This will ensure that you receive your reimbursement check in a timely manner.
Necessary documentation for the beneficiaries of deceased active members:
For the Pension and Annuity Offices:
An original copy of Death Certificate
A copy of the Marriage Certificate
A copy of spouse’s Social Security card
A copy of both his and hers Birth Certificate
Please note: The Pension and Annuity Departments will share this information
For the Health & Welfare Death Benefit
An original copy of Death Certificate
To have the funeral home paid by the Health and Welfare Death Benefit, the funeral home will need to send an assignment of benefits form to the Health & Welfare Department.
Note: Beneficiaries of deceased members will receive letters from the Pension, Annuity, and Health & Welfare departments requesting the above information.
1755 Fairlane Drive* Allen Park, MI 48101*phone (313) 584-8520 * fax (313) 584-8777