Open enrollment begins November 1, 2014 for the BLET Short Term Disability Plan

From BLET.org

Open enrollment begins November 1, 2014 for the BLET Short Term Disability Plan – Important Changes and Enhancements to Plan B CoverageCLEVELAND, October 9 — Open Enrollment for 2015 under the BLET’s Short Term Disability insurance plan begins on November 1, 2014 and runs through December 15, 2014.

If you are a locomotive engineer working on a railroad that participated in the Wage/Rules portion of the National Agreement dated December 16, 2003 (as an example; BNSF, NS and Amtrak did not participate in this Plan so this information does not apply to engineers working on these properties), your coverage under Part A (described below) of the BLET Short Term Disability Plan will automatically continue.

If you currently do not participate in Part B coverage (also described below), you may elect coverage during this enrollment period. If you currently participate and wish to opt out of Part B coverage, then you can also do so during this enrollment period.

Part A — NON-OCCUPATIONAL DISABILITIES

There will be no changes to Part A coverage:

• Your eligibility and $40 premium is submitted by the railroad on a monthly basis.
• Part A pays $402 per week for non-occupational disabilities only, up to 52 weeks’ coverage.
• Occupational disabilities are not covered.
• Each eligible member is insured for $50,000 of Accidental Death and Dismemberment (AD&D) coverage.
• There is a 14-day waiting period.

Part B — OCCUPATIONAL DISABILITIES

The premium cost for Part B coverage was reduced significantly to $18 per month in 2014. In addition, if you currently participate in Part B coverage or are currently eligible for Part A and enroll in Part B coverage, Part B will now also cover non-occupational disabilities in the case that you are demoted to train service and become ineligible for Part A coverage.

Part B is voluntary. Participation in this additional occupational coverage is not required.

• The weekly benefit for occupational disabilities is $402 per week, up to 52 weeks.
• Each eligible member is insured for an additional $50,000 of AD&D coverage. When participating in both Part A and Part B there is a total of $100,000 of AD&D coverage.
• The benefit is not subject to repayment upon receipt of a FELA settlement (no repayment after a personal injury settlement).
• The benefit is not considered taxable income.
• The Part B premium will be paid either via a payroll deduction or via an automatic monthly direct withdrawal authorization arranged with your banking/financial institution.
• There is a 14-day waiting period.

NOTE: SMART-TD members working as engineers are eligible for Part A and may purchase Part B coverage by making an annual payment of $216 to the BLET Short Term Disability Trust Fund. (Complete the form at the link below and return to address noted by December 15, 2014.)

FILING A CLAIM FOR BLET SHORT TERM DISABILITY

• Call 1-800-858-6506 – MetLife Claim Center.
• Tell them you would like to file a claim under BLET Short Term Disability.
• Provide information requested, including contact information for your attending physician(s).
• A Case Manager will be assigned and you will receive a file number, which you must keep available for future reference.
• Following the call, you will receive an authorization for release of medical information.
• Sign the document and return to MetLife.

IMPORTANT:
Your initial eligibility for Part B remains dependent upon your eligibility for Part A. In order to be eligible for Part A, you must have seven (7) starts in a month (with at least one (1) start as an engineer) prior to enrolling for coverage.

If you are enrolled in Part B and are demoted to train service and become ineligible for Part A coverage you will no longer have to notify the Secretary-Treasurer of your local division. Your Part B coverage will automatically cover you for both occupational and non-occupational disabilities until you (1) again become eligible for Part A, (2) elect to discontinue your payroll deduction for Part B coverage, or (3) are no longer a locomotive engineer working on a railroad that participated in the Wage/Rules portion of the National Agreement dated December 16, 2003.

CHOICES THAT MUST BE MADE BY DECEMBER 15, 2014

If you currently do NOT participate in Part B and choose to do nothing, you will continue to be eligible for Part A coverage only. If you are currently enrolled in Part B and wish to remain enrolled, then you are not required to take any action.

If you currently do NOT participate and would like to sign-up for Part B coverage during this open enrollment period, or if you DO currently participate and would like to opt-out of Part B coverage, you must complete and return the attached form (link below), by December 15, 2014, to the Secretary-Treasurer of your local division. Your election will become effective on January 1, 2015.

Members, who OPT-OUT of Part B coverage effective January 1, 2015, will not be eligible to enroll for the coverage until the next annual enrollment period. No exceptions will be made.

DESIGNATION OF BENEFICIARY(IES)

You are able to designate your beneficiary(ies) for the AD&D coverage on-line. If you would prefer to submit a paper beneficiary form, one is available on MetLife’s website. A simple registration process is required the first time you access www.metlife.com/mybenefits. Designating your beneficiary(ies) will ensure that your benefit proceeds are paid according to your wishes. If you do not have a designation of beneficiary(ies) on file, proceeds will be paid according to the AD&D plan’s facility of payment clause. Beneficiary designation for this coverage will not impact beneficiary designations for any other Life Insurance or AD&D plans that you may have with MetLife.

QUESTIONS

Anyone with questions regarding BLET Short Term Disability should contact Megan Mead, BLET Short Term Disability Liaison, at 216-241-2630 (ext. 205) or email at mead@ble-t.org.

A copy of the opt-in/opt-out form is available here on the National Division website.

A copy of the annual enrollment form for SMART-TD members can be found here.

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