In an effort to assist members who have been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic the Board of Trustees are permitting participants who need to make fourth quarter self-payments to do so over three (3) even and consecutive monthly installments.
Those who can make the entire payment will need to consider weighing the advantages of doing so versus the risk of failing to make a subsequent payment or not making said payment on time.
If you are making a lump payment, your payment needs to be at the Health and Benefit Office no later than 4:30 P.M. on Thursday, October 1, 2020. If you elect to make three installment payments, be advised that each of your three equal installment payments are due no later than 4:30 P.M. on:
Thursday, October 1, 2020
Monday, November 2nd, 2020
Tuesday, December 1, 2020
As outlined within your shortage of hour notification letter, late payments or payments in amounts less than what is due, will result in termination of coverage. If this should happen, you will be offered the opportunity to continue your coverage under the COBRA provisions of the Plan.
A special message to the
Procrastinators – Suffice to say that procrastination is a little like magic, incomprehensible and mysterious in the moment but obvious in retrospect. With that said, kindly stop choosing to allow the unnecessary to push aside the important.
What was that? You say you don’t procrastinate? Well, we just want to remind you then that the Plan cannot treat you any differently than everyone else who makes their payments on time.
Participants that blame their spouse for not taking care of their affairs in a timely manner – Stop that.
You’re better than that. At least we like to think that you are, and we are relatively certain that your better half wants to believe the same. But if you’re hell bent in proving both of us wrong, have at it.
Moreover, and we mean this sincerely, take some responsibility. To begin with, the Fund did not write to your spouse, it wrote to you. Secondly, if somewhere along the line you ceded accountability for certain tasks, fine. But own that decision.
Participants that say that they never received their shortage of hours’ notice – Be advised that your shortage of hours letter was not returned to the Plan as being undeliverable. If it was, you would have received a phone call from us asking you for your new address.
Now that that is out of the way, the Plan understands that the world is full of distractions, both external and internal. That is why we sent the letter in a bright, lime green envelope with the Funds name and address written in the return address field and the word “IMPORTANT” written across the front of the envelope and the words “OPEN IMMEDIATELY. READ THOROUGHLY” written on the back of the envelope.
The Plan also knows that some of us pay attention to some realities more than others. For that reason, and in an effort to help you focus on something that is real important for you and your family, the Plan sent the shortage of hours letter in a bright, lime green envelope with the Funds name and address written in the return address field and the word “IMPORTANT” written on the front of the envelope and the words “OPEN IMMEDIATELY. READ THOROUGHLY” written on the back side of the envelope
In conclusion, ignoring your mail, for whatever reason, does not make you a bad person, but it can make you an uninsured one. To be clear, and as evidenced by the lime green envelope, etc., as well as this piece in the Fall newsletter, the Plan neither wants to see you and your family lose coverage, nor does it want to have to terminate your coverage. The key word in that last sentence is the word “have”. The Plan cannot treat any participant any differently than any other. No matter the excuse or circumstance. Therefore, if your coverage is terminated for lack of payment, untimely submission of payment or insufficient payment, here are your choices: 1) You can continue your coverage through the Plan’s COBRA provision; 2) Source out and obtain coverage through your states Healthcare insurance exchange and/or; 3) Avail yourself of your right to submit a written appeal asking the Board of Trustees of the Lake County Indiana, NECA – I.B.E.W. Health and Benefit Plan to reinstate your coverage. Said appeals can be mailed to that Board at: 7200 Mississippi Street, Suite 300, Merrillville IN 46410.