An employee’s health reimbursement arrangement (HRA) account is funded solely by employer contributions. Balances within these accounts become a tax-free benefit when utilized to reimburse eligible employees for qualified out of pocket medical, dental, pharmaceutical and health insurance premium expenses.
HRA Account Creation
On October 1, 2018, balances within an employee’s hour bank were combined with whatever balance existed within their MRP account to create the HRA.
HRA account creation for newly eligible employees and/or reinstated employees on or after October 1, 2018.
An HRA account will be established for you only after 450 hours (or pro-rated if traveling) of employer contributions are received within the first or any subsequent calendar quarters after obtaining initial eligibility or reinstatement of eligibility. In other words, only employer contributions received within the first calendar quarter after obtaining initial eligibility or reinstatement of eligibility, that are in excess of 450 hours (or pro-rated if traveling) will be used in the calculation of any monies to be credited to an employees account.
HRA Account Maximums
The Trustees determine both the maximum balance that can be accrued within a journeyperson’s account as well as the amounts permissible to be rolled-over from year to year. The maximum amount an active employee is eligible to amass in their HRA account is $17,000.00.
When your HRA account is credited.
HRA accounts are credited at the same frequency in which your eligibility is credited. Meaning: the amount of excess contributions earned in a work quarter will be tallied and subsequently credited to an employee’s HRA account during the corresponding quarter of coverage.
|Work Quarter||Quarter of Coverage|
|January, February, March||July, August, September|
|April, May June||October, November, December|
|July, August, September||January, February, March|
|October, November, December||April, May June|
Please note that the middle column is deliberately left blank to emphasize the fact that there exists an administrative “lag quarter” that separates a work quarter from its corresponding quarter of coverage. Meaning: Excess contributions received in any work quarter does not get credited in the subsequent calendar quarter of coverage. Rather, it skips a quarter.
Traveling, Reciprocated Health and Benefit Contributions and your HRA account.
Reciprocated contributions received for hours worked as a traveler in another Local’s jurisdiction will be included in the HRA’s quarterly calculation of excess hours. However, participants are advised that if they work in another I.B.E.W. Local Union’s jurisdiction in which the hourly contributions are less than the hourly I.B.E.W. Local 697 Health and Benefit Plan contributions in effect at the time those hours were incurred, then should those contributions be reciprocated, then the minimum number of required hours needed to be exceeded will be pro-rated.
When this occurs, the Plan will utilize the following formula to calculate the quarterly hourly requirement needed to be exceeded before your account is credited.
450 (Hours Needed) x Local 697 Inside Journeypersons rate
the reciprocated hourly rate
= Quarterly Hours needed before your account will be credited.
For example, if you worked a calendar quarter in another I.B.E.W. Local’s jurisdiction that had a $9.50 an hour Health and Benefit Plan contribution rate, the number of hours needed to have contributions made to your Health Reimbursement Arrangement (HRA) account would be 473.
Meaning; Contributions reciprocated in excess of 473 hours will be credited to your Health Reimbursement Arrangement (HRA) account.
For this example, the formula would look like as follows:
450 x $10.00 / $9.50 = 473.68