Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Frequently Asked Questions


Health Care

Q. When do I meet initial eligibility for coverage under the Health and Welfare Plan?
A.You will meet the initial eligibility requirements on the first day of the month following any two consecutive calendar quarters (six consecutive months) in which you work in both quarters and your employer made contributions to the Fund on your behalf for at least 440 hours. The eligibility dates each year are January 01, April 01, July 01 and October 01 as shown in the table below:
Work Months Eligibility Months
January thru June July thru December
April thru September October thru March
July thru December January thru June
October thru March April thru September
Q. What are the requirements for continuing eligibility?
A. You will continue to be eligible for benefits during any two consecutive calendar quarters that immediately follow two consecutive quarters in which you work in both quarters and your employer makes contributions to the Fund for at least 440 hours or non-work credit hours are granted due to an approved disability.
Q.Who is primary if my spouse has coverage through their employer?
A. Your coverage will always be primary for you and your spouse’s coverage will always be primary for your spouse. If you have coverage for your dependent children, the primary payer will depend on when you and your spouse’s birthday fall in the year. If your birthday falls earlier in the year than your spouse, your plan will be the primary payer. If you spouse’s birthday falls earlier, then their plan becomes primary. This is considered the “birthday rule”.
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Pension

Q.Is there Survivor Benefits If I die before retiring?
A. Yes, there are Preretirement Surviving Spouse Pension and the Death Benefit.
If you die before retirement your beneficiary is eligible for a death benefit equal to 90% of the contributions made on your behalf, provided.
  • The participant has at least five years of contributions service pension credits , and
  • The participant must be credited with at least 375 hours of work in a pension credit year in the three year period preceding your death.
If a married participant dies before retiring on a pension, his spouse may be eligible for a Preretirement Surviving Spouse Pension providing the participant,
  • Has the pension credit and vesting service required for a pension, and
  • The participant and his/her spouse must have been married to each other for the one-year period ending on the date of the participants death, and
  • The participant must have earned an hour of work after December 31, 1975.

The Preretirement Surviving Spouse Pension will be paid on a monthly basis for the remainder of your eligible surviving spouse’s lifetime. The amount of the Preretirement surviving spouse pension is equal to 50% of the Husband and Wife Pension amount that would have been payable had you retired on the day before you died. The monthly benefit will not begin for your surviving spouse until the month you would have reached your earliest retirement age had you lived. If your spouse’s benefit is not immediately payable, your spouse must wait at least twelve (12) months before the monthly benefit is payable to her, then your spouse may elect to receive the death benefit in lieu of the preretirement surviving spouse pension.

Q. What are my Pension benefit payment options?
A.There are various payment options under the Pension Plan. The payment option available to you will depend on certain criteria at the time your benefit payments begin.
  • Lump Sum Payment - If the Participant’s accumulated Share is $5,000.00 or less as of the Annuity Starting Date, the Trustees shall pay the benefit, if not more than $1,000.00 out in a single sum. If the Participants Accumulated Share is over $1,000.00 (but not exceeding $5,000.00) as of the Annuity Starting Date, payment of a single sum shall be made at the written election of the Participant.
  • Single Life Pension – Normal form of payment for an unmarried participant. A married participant may elect a Single Life pension if he and his spouse reject the 50% Husband and Wife Pension. The Single Life Pension is payable for the life of the participant with a guarantee of 36 monthly payments.
  • Husband and Wife Pension - Provides a benefit for the participants life and upon his passing his spouse (at the time of retirement) would receive a monthly benefit equal to the percentage of the participants benefit elected at the time of retirement. Under the Husband and Wife Pension the amount of the participants monthly benefit is reduced to allow a lifetime benefit for his/her surviving spouse after the participant’s death.
    • 50% Husband and Wife – Normal form of payment for a married participant. Under this form of benefit, the participant’s spouse, if surviving at the time of the participant’s death, will receive a benefit equal to 50% of the monthly benefit the participant was receiving.
    • 75% Husband and Wife – If a married participant and his spouse both waive the normal form of benefit (50% Husband and Wife), an election of a 75% spousal form of payment may be made. Under this form of benefit, the participant’s spouse, if surviving at the time of the participant’s death, will receive a benefit equal to 75% of the monthly benefit the participant was receiving.
Q. When will my Pension benefits begin?
A. There is no mandatory retirement age under the Plan, However a participant must begin to receive his/her pension by April 1 of the year following the year the participant obtained age 70-1/2, regardless of whether or not he/she is working.
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Annuity

Q. Who is covered under the Annuity Fund?
A. All employees working for an Employer whose Collective Bargaining Agreement obligates them to contribute to the Fund are covered.

Q. How does the Fund work?
A.Individual Accounts are established for all employees for whom Employer contributions are made. These Employees become Participants in the Plan. All Employer contributions made on the Participants' behalf are credited to that Participant's Individual Account.
Q. When will I be eligible to receive payment from the Annuity Fund?
A. You will become eligible to receive payment under any of the following circumstances:
  • You have not worked in Covered Employment for at least twelve (12) consecutive calendar months and do not return to work in covered Employment prior to the date of benefit payments, or
  • You receive a pension benefit under the Iron Workers Pension Plan, or
  • You receive monthly Social Security benefits, or
  • You reach age 70-1/2, or
  • You become totally and permanently disabled, or
  • You die (benefits will be made payable to your beneficiary).
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