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1375 Virginia Drive, Suite 102  Ft. Washington, PA 19034

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Buy Up Information

Buy-Up Rules

The Welfare Fund offers a special provision for your added protection. During some Work Periods your employer’s contributions to the Fund may not be sufficient to provide the Welfare Fund coverage you want. To assure that you and your family have the coverage you feel you need, especially during periods of low employment or disability, you may have the option to make voluntary contributions in order to buy up to the Benefit Level you desire.

Parent Body

There are 3 levels to Parent Body eligibility:

  1. P1 – Full Benefits (1,200 or more hours)
  2. P3 – Inpatient medical/surgical including physician charges (800 – 1,199 hours)
  3. P4 – Inpatient hospital benefit does not include physician charges (200 – 799 hours)

To determine your Parent Body eligibility level, you need to calculate how many hours you worked in the 12 month Work Period.

The months for each of the 4 quarters are listed below.

1st Quarter 2014 Eligibility Period (Jan/Feb/Mar)
Work Period – January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September 2013 and October, November, December 2012.

2nd Quarter 2014 Eligibility Period (April/May/June)
Work Period – January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December 2013.

3rd Quarter 2014 Eligibility Period (July/Aug/Sept)
Work Period – January, February, March 2014 and April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December 2013.

4th Quarter 2014 Eligibility Period (Oct/Nov/Dec)
Work Period – January, February, March, April, May, June 2014 and July, August, September, October, November, December 2013.

If you are short hours, you may be able to Buy Up to a higher level. For every hour short of the level, it costs $1 per hour per month. (In 2010, the Trustees lowered the Buy Up rate to $.50 per hour)

Here’s an example for 1st Quarter 2014 Eligibility Period (Jan/Feb/Mar):

For the 12 months, Jan-Sept 2013 and Oct-Dec 2012 – a member worked 500 hours. Since the total hours were greater than 200 but less that 1,200, the member would be eligible for P3 coverage. If the member wanted to Buy Up to the P1 level, they would need to pay $1 for every hour short of the required 1,200 or 1,200 – 500 = 700 x $1 =$700 per month.

C Branch

When a member works under a C Branch contract, the employer is required to pay the negotiated monthly welfare rate. There is a 3 month lag between when a member works and when they are eligible. See Chart below.

If the Fund Office only receives a partial Welfare payment and not the required amount, the member will be offered COBRA. The amount owed by the member will depend on the COBRA option chosen less any money received.

As an example:

A member works 1 week in January and the Employer remits $250 which is according to their contract. The member would receive a partial credit for April eligibility.

Welfare Rate – $1,000 per month Employer Contribution – $250
Family COBRA rate – $1,500 Member Portion – $1,250

To continue the example to the following month: the member did not work in February, so no employer contributions were received for May and the member would owe $1,500.

C Branch Eligibility Chart
If you work this month Your employer contribution is due this month You are eligible for benefits in this month
January February April
February March May
March April June
April May July
May June August
June July September
July August October
August September November
September October December
October November January
November December February
December January March

The Fund office will notify you if you are eligible to buy up. If you are eligible, you may make voluntary contributions to increase your Benefit Level for any Work Period in which your employer contribution is insufficient for the Benefit Level you want.

Buy-Up Option

The Welfare Fund offers a special provision for your added protection. During some Work Periods you employer’s contributions to the Fund may not be sufficient to provide the Welfare Fund coverage you want. To assure that you and your family have the coverage you feel you need, especially during periods of low employment or disability, you may have the option to make voluntary contributions in order to Buy- Up to the Benefit Level you desire.

The Fund Office will notify you if you become ineligible for benefits. You may have the option to pay for the Benefit Level- and coverage- you need.

The Fund office will notify you if you are eligible to Buy- Up. If you are eligible, you may make voluntary contributions to increase your Benefit Level for any Work Period in which your employer contribution is insufficient for the Benefit Level you want.

The Buy- Up option is limited to 18 consecutive months. Once you have made voluntary contributions for 18 consecutive months your eligibility for the Buy- Up option will cease. You may be eligible to Buy- Up again once you have established P1 coverage through hours worked for a minimum of nine consecutive months.

The Buy- Up Formula      
Part 1 Required Work Hours for Desired Benefit Level – Actual Credited Work Hours = Eligibility Hours Short
Part 2 Eligibility Hours Short x $1.00 = Monthly Buy- Up Charge (to a maximum of $800)

Example

Assume you are credited with 250 Work Hours for the Work Period from October 2004 to September 2005. Therefore, from January through March 2006, you will be eligible for the P4 Benefit Level. However, assume you have the option to Buy- Up to either Benefit Level P1 or P3 and you want to Buy- Up to level P1.

Your monthly contribution of $800 (the maximum monthly Buy- Up charge, even if the charge would exceed $800) would be calculated as follows:

Part 1 1,200 (Required Work Hours for Desired Benefit Level) – 250 (Actual Credited Work Hours) = 950 (Eligibility Hours Short)
Part 2 950 x $1.00 = $800 (maximum Buy-
Up charge)

Benefit Level to Which You May Buy- Up

The Fund office will notify you if are eligible to Buy- Up (see Schedule of Notification and Payment Due below). Choose your Buy- Up option carefully. You may not Buy- Up more than one level above the Benefit Level for which you were last eligible, unless it is an “initial Buy- Up.” Your future Buy- Up options will depend on the choice you make intially and with each subsequent Buy- Up opportunity.

If you are eligible for Benefit Level You may be allowed to Buy- Up to:
  P1 P3
P3 x  
P4 x x

Schedule of Notification and Payment Due

Quarterly statements containing eligibility and contribution information are provided before each Benefit/Eligibility Quarter. If you are eligible for the Buy- Up option, you will receive a Buy- Up notice in the mail. You must make your payment by the indicated due date. Coverage will take effect in the corresponding Benefit/Eligibility Quarter.

Work Period Quarterly Statement Mailed “Buy-Up” Notices in Mail Payment Due Benefit/Eligibility Quarter
October- September November 15 December 5
January 5
February 5
December 25
January 25
February 25
January
February
March
January- December February 15 March 5
April 5
May 5
March 25
April 25
May 25
April
May
June
April- March May 15 June 5
July 5
August 5
June 25
July 25
August 25
July
August
September
July- June August 15 September 5
October 5
November 5
September 25
October 25
November 25
October
November
December

How to Make a Payment

You must be a United States resident in order to Buy- Up. Your contribution must be paid by the due date prior to the month in which your eligibility would start. You may make your contribution by check or money order payable to the Welfare Fund. Or, you may pay in cash at Fund Office when a receipt can be provided.

Please note, if your check is returned by the bank for insufficient funds, you will be charged a service fee– and you may lose your eligibility for the Buy- Up option if there is not enough time to resubmit your check before your payment due date.

Your Buy- Up contribution can be made only for the Benefit/Eligibility Quarter immediately following the Work Period that your employer contributions were insufficient for the Benefit Level you wanted. You may not pay in advance for future Benefit/Eligibility Quarters.

Reminders

  • September Letter from the Funds Office
  • Please take note regarding the SUB fund:  You must apply for benefits within 90 days of the Saturday of the week you are first unemployed and eligible for benefits.  Subsequent claims must be made within 90 days of the week -ending for which benefits are payable.
  • The Welfare Fund has been covering CDL Physicals since the start of 2018.  Click here for the requirements for reimbursement.
  • Motor Vehicle Accidents are Not covered by the Welfare Fund.  (Please talk to your insurance agent about increasing your medical coverage.)
  • Dependent Maternity is not covered.
  • Let us know when you: get Married or Divorced, have a child, or move.
  • When retired, our Health & Welfare plan (if eligible) requires you and/or your spouse to have Medicare A & B when eligible.