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2017 Verizon Strike Settlement Retiree Health Care Documents and Updates: Click Here
Dental Plan Flyer Update Click Here
As always, remember when you are about to turn 65, whether or not you opt to take Social Security at 65, to sign up for Medicare Part A and Part B. DO NOT SIGN UP FOR D. We get that through Verizon (Drug Plan)
And also: Medicare Part B costs and Social Security are issues with the Federal Government, not Verizon. Check with Social Security and Medicare first if you have questions about costs or coverage.
Verizon Sickness Death Benefit, aka: "Frozen Death Benefit" from 1101 RMC Membership Meeting:
- To qualify you must have been hired by Verizon/Bell Atlantic;NYNEX/New York Tel on or before December 31, 1986.
- The benefit is equal to one year of your basic rate of pay that was in effect on December 31, 1986
- The benefit is payable to your spouse living with you when you die, or dependent children under 23 living with you, or dependent parents, or some exception for disabled dependents. You do not get to name a dependent.
- The Sickness Death Benefit is "inside" the pension plan. That is why the company could not eliminate it. (Or really, had to reinstate it after being sued by retirees) It's protected. Currently look in the SPD "Your Pension Plan Benefits" on page 36 for precise wording,.
- If you took the lump sum buyout instead of the pension plan you (your surviving spouse, etc) probably do not qualify for this benefit, as you opted out of the pension plan.
- Your survivng spouse (or other qualifying dependent) has one year from your death to apply for the benefit. It is not, shall we say, widely advertised.
- Call the Verizon Benefits Center at 1-855-489-2367 and ask if you qualify for the Sickness Death Benefit. They should send you a letter with the amount your spouse will receive if qualified.
- Thanks to 1101 RMC VP Anita Lathan, RMC 1101 members Michael Saurino and Joseph DeBarbieri, 1101 Secretary-Treasurer Kevin Condy and many others for helping to put the pieces together on this one.
Updates on Life Insurance & Medical Benefits from January 2015 & 2016 1101 RMC Membership Meetings:
Verizon Life Insurance: Supplemental Life Insurance TERMINATES on the January 1 following the month in which you reach age 65. Basic Life insurance is a) your basic yearly salary if you retired on or before Aug 2, 2008 OR b) your yearly salary as of Aug 2, 2008 if you retired after that date - in other words, it does not increase after that no matter how long you continue to work OR c) $20,000 if you were hired on or after Aug 3, 2008.
When you reach age 66 your Life Insurance decreases each year by 10% until at age 70 it reaches 50% of your yearly salary or 50% of the Aug 2, 2008 cut off amount. But it will not fall below $20,000.
In short: If you retired from Verizon and you are 70 years old or older your total Verizon Life Insurance will be half your yearly salary at retirement or less.
The Letter From Prudential About Life Insurance: Many of us received a letter from Prudential offering to take over our Verizon Life Insurance. This is like a mini buyout, as best we can figure it out. Verizon gives Prudential a bunch of money, supposedly equal to what they would sock away to pay your Life Insurance, and you take that and work something out with Prudential, which might or might not be bigger and costlier.
Keep in mind: if you choose to do that you are now off Verizon's books, and if Prudential raises your rates in the future, that is between you and Prudential. As we get older and older, it becomes more and more likely we will die, and Life Insurance becomes more and more expensive.
2015 AT&T Retiree Medicare Qualified Medical Benefits: Big Changes, None for the Better. Are They Coming To Verizon?
AT&T Provides fixed dollar amount ($2,700 for retiree plus $1,500)
That amount only promised through 2015
Retirees must purchase at least some of Medicare Supplemental from AON
AON counselors are low-paid and work on commission
AON counselors have miseld retirees by claiming all Medicare Supplemntal must be purchased from AON
AON stock is up, rated a "buy." Private exchange model rated lucrative.
AT&T claimed they were forced to do this by the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare).
This is a lie. AT&T was forced to admit they did it to save money.
Summary Points to remember about Verizon retiree health benefits from 1101 RMC Membership Meeting March 19, 2014 with Bill Gross
It isn’t like “the good old days.” We can’t assume that the benefits we have today will always be there if we just do nothing. There are people out there, in the company and in politics looking to reduce and eliminate pensions, health care benefits, Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. We have to stay alert and involved.
Verizon has switched vendors for its health plans again. Either due to incompetence or on purpose, “mistakes” have been made concerning coverage. We also have to stay alert and involved here. Do not assume everything is good if you signed up for or corrected an error in coverage on line. Doublecheck, call up in person, keep a paper trail. The vendor must record all conversations, so those can be checked if there is a disagreement. You can’t verify or dispute an interaction with a website.
Be especially alert when you turn 65 and become Medicare eligible. Make sure dependents have not been “accidentally” dropped and that your drug coverage continues. Remember: if retirees turn 65 and go on Medicare and their spouses are younger the spouses are still covered as previously and not through Medicare, until they turn 65.
When eligible, you want Medicare A and B.
You do NOT want Part D. We have a drug plan through our Verizon benefits. Due to changes in the law from the Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare) you may sometimes see your Verizon drug coverage referred to as Part D
January, 2014: In order to comply with new regulations from the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services regarding the Medicare Part D program, effective January 1, 2014 Express Scripts has modified their Worry Free Fills prescription program.
Worry Free Fills is the name Express Scripts uses for the automatic refill service for mail order medications when any eligible Medicare Retiree enrolls in the program. Under the new regulations, pharmacies can no longer dispense and ship medications without the participants consent. This change impacts new prescriptions that are received by Express Scripts from sources other than the eligible Medicare Retiree. For example, prescriptions that are e-prescribed, faxed or received directly from the doctor's office would fall into this category. Express Scripts will attempt to contact the Medicare retiree by phone or by mail to obtain their consent. Once consent is received for the new prescription, no additional consent is needed to refill.
Medicare members are receiving letters explaining the new rules.
Verizon Medicare Retirees Are Not In Medicare Part D
Verizon Is Obligated To Have A Medicare Part D Plan
Verizon Retirees Should Not Join Medicare Part D.
No deadline on open enrollment for Verizon Retirees
If you like your current plan YOU DON"T HAVE TO DO ANYTHING
For more info: click here for Local 1101 website
Some Verizon retirees may have received a letter from Verizon benefits concerning the healthcare marketplace. Under the new affordable care act, Verizon is legally obligated to send this letter out to notify retirees of the healthcare marketplace. This letter is nothing more than that, union retirees are covered by a collective-bargaining agreement, their healthcare benefits remain the same. No action is required or recommended.
Notice: Retirees Are Reporting Difficulties When They Qualify for Medicare - They Show Up as Dropped From Drug Coverage When They Go to Get a Prescription Filled. You are still covered for prescriptions when you go on Medicare - it's just a different Verizon plan.
How To Request a Brand Instead of Generic Drug
Must get paperwork from your Dr.
VERIZON BENEFITS FOR 2013
1-855-489-2367 Benefits Center (Xerox Solutions)
www.verizon.com/benefitsconnection ( NEW web site)
First time users on this new system will have to REGISTER with a new User ID and password. Please read the instructions to establish a new user ID and password since they have specific requirements.
DENTAL COVERAGE (There are no changes to dental coverage options)
Medicare Prescription Plan Part D
Medicare Part D Premiums
Some retirees will be seeing what Medicare calls a "high earner" Medicare Part D premium. As background, Verizon is required to comply with CMS regulations associated with offering a Medicare Part D prescription drug plan. The regulations provide for an additional Part D premium for "high earners." Similar to Medicare Part B, Medicare Part D premiums are based on the Part B income thresholds. The Social Security Administration determines individual's obligations based on the beneficiary's tax return 2 years prior. Premium adjustments may change each year.
Additional Medicare Part D premiums associated with their enrollment in the Verizon Medicare Part D prescription drug plan. The company is currently implementing a quarterly process targeted for April to reimburse retirees for their first quarter amounts.
Further questions can be directed to Verizon Benefits at