• How long is my (or my dependents) Railroad Health Care Coverage in effect if I am suspended, dismissed, furloughed or in the event of the death of the employee?
  • What are the Most Important Contact Support Numbers?
  • If I have less than 240 months of creditable railroad service and/or not age 60 with 120 months service, how can I qualify for Total and Permanent Disability?
  • How long is my coverage in effect if I am off-work due to illness or injury?
  • How do I qualify for Occupational Disability under the Railroad Retirement Act?
How long is my (or my dependents) Railroad Health Care Coverage in effect if I am suspended, dismissed, furloughed or in the event of the death of the employee?

Coverage ends the last day of the fourth month following the month in which you last had compensated service. However, it is important to remember that there is a possibility for “continuation of existing coverage” for your dependents that have a total & permanent disability, in the third trimester of pregnancy or establish a disability by providing a “proof of disability form” prior to the expiration of the four month period.

What are the Most Important Contact Support Numbers?

RAILROAD RETIREMENT BOARD – (877) 772-5772

Railroad Employees (and Retirees) Life Insurance at Met-Life – (800) 310-7770 to change beneficiary or file a claim.

NS Engineers Short-Term Disability at Mutual of Omaha – (800) 877-5176

Woody Taylor, Broker for the NS Disability Plan (for claims problems) (877) 646-9951 or: (888) 696-9951

CSX/ BNSF & UPRR National BLE&T Short-Term Disability Plan at Met-Life – (800) 858-6506

Jim Bradford, BLE&T Plan Administrator for this plan – (254) 718-5689

UTU Disability Insurance at Anthem Claims Department: (800) 232-0113

United Health Care (GA-23000) – (800) 842-5252 or (800) 842-9905

NRC/UTU Plan (GA-690100) – (888) 445-4379

United Behavioral Health – (866) 850-6212

Blue Cross (RR Division) – (866) 267-3320

Highmark – (866) 267-3320 AETNA – (800) 842-4044 Medco – (800) 842-0070

If I have less than 240 months of creditable railroad service and/or not age 60 with 120 months service, how can I qualify for Total and Permanent Disability?

You must be unable to perform any regular and substantial work. Some cases of depression, concentration problems and anxiety that you are being treated for along with your physical conditions, help support a claim of unable to perform any regular and substantial work. If your original application is denied there is a 60 day period to Request Reconsideration. In this process you should strive to submit additional medical evidence to support the claim of unable to perform any work. If that is denied there is a Hearing process. Call us for (no-fee) assistance on this. If you qualify for T&P disability, you will become eligible for early Medicare Insurance Coverage after 29 months from your “onset date” of disability.

How long is my coverage in effect if I am off-work due to illness or injury?

The remainder of the year the disability began (qualifying year) plus two additional years (dependents get remainder of qualifying year and one additional year). Dental and vision care, remainder of the qualifying year and one year for both employee and dependents. However, vacation pay received in any year following the qualifying year will extend coverage for one additional year. Make certain you send the vacation pay earnings statement to the insurance provider. Remember to have your physician sign the “proof of disability form” and fax it to the Health Care Provider or coverage will suspend until you do so. If you turn age 60 and have 30 years service while GA-23000 is in effect as outlined above, you could qualify for GA-46000 (‘60/30 retiree insurance”) when the GA-23000 coverage ends and in such cases, when the dependent coverage ends one year before the employee coverage ends, the dependent could be placed on GA-46000 prior to the employee actually going on GA-46000. In situations where a “60/30” employee has established a disability with a Proof of Disability Form submitted and is forced to regular retire because of that disability, the GA-23000 coverage could continue for the period outlined above rather than go to GA-46000.

How do I qualify for Occupational Disability under the Railroad Retirement Act?

You must have 240 months of creditable railroad retirement compensation or age 60 with 120 months creditable compensation. It is important to note that compensation from your union of $25.00 or more in any month can qualify as a creditable month. You must be off-work under a Physicians care and unable to perform your railroad occupation for ave-month period. As early as possible during this five-month “waiting period” (receiving RRB sickness benefits) you should contact your Railroad Retirement Board Regional Office at (877) 772-5772 and request an application for Occupational Disability. On the application you will describe the duties of you RR Occupation and why you can no longer perform those duties due to your medical or mental condition. Medical disqualification from the Railroad is not required. A Disability Freeze rating may allow dependents to receive an annuity, provide early Medicare coverage and change your Tier I portion tax rate to the same as Social Security tax rate. Most often, those who are off work and suspect they will not be able to return follow the following steps toward occupational disability: (1) Contact the RRB Regional Office for an application for RRB Sickness Benefits and after being off-work for 7 days, file the application, (2) Obtain a Proof of Disability Form, have your physician sign it and fax it to the Insurance Provider in order to keep coverage in effect, (3) As soon as you can determine that you most probably will not be returning to work, again contact RRB and request an application for Occupational Disability, (4) contact any and all disability insurance providers you have and file a claim for those benefits.



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