SUP Welfare Plan

Welcome to the SUP Benefits Plans!

The Welfare Plan, SIU-PD Pension Plan and the Supplemental Benefit Plan are all Taft-Hartley Labor Management Trusts created, designed and maintained to service SUP members. You earn eligibility for these important and generous benefits by working under SUP contract. It takes 120 days of initial qualifying days to become eligible as a participant, and presently 60 days of continuing employment (within the eligibility period) to maintain benefits. Benefits are not only for members but also include qualifying spouses and legal dependents. These benefits are the product of many years of collective bargaining and the hard work of SUP members who generate the contributions that pay for it all.

Among the documents available here is the important Summary Plan Description of the SUP Welfare Plan and the SIU-PD Pension Plan, (links on the console to the right) which describes the benefits, the eligibility and how it all works. Following that there are some important forms and other documents. There are also forms available for the SUP 401(k) Plan, the SUP Money Purchase Pension Plan, and the Special Medical Pensioner's Benefit. If you have any questions call the Plan offices at 415-778-5490

Dear Participant: We are pleased to present SUP Welfare Plan's Summary Plan Description describing the benefits provided by the SUP Welfare Plan. The Plan was established in accordance with Collective Bargaining Agreements between the Sailors' Union of the Pacific and participating employers.

The Plan Description furnishes a brief description of the benefits to which you and your family are entitled, the rules governing these benefits, and the procedures that should be followed when making a claim. This booklet includes certain information concerning the administration of the Plan as required by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974. We urge you and your family to read this booklet thoroughly so that you will be familiar with the benefits of the Plan. We are pleased to present this booklet describing the benefits provided by the SUP Welfare Plan.

 

Like the Union, the SUP Welfare Plan and related trusts remain open on a limited basis, and subject to social distancing rules. For more detail see the related documents:

SUP Welfare Plan Social Distancing Protocol is here.

Seafarers' Medical Center Social Distancing Protocol is here.

SIU PD Benefit Plans Social Distancing Protocol is here.

May, 2019

SUP 401(k) and Money Purchase Pension Plans
SUP bargained with all employers under the Collective Bargaining Agreement (Matson, APLMS, Patriot, Foss) to provide two tax advantageous retirement plans:
the Money Purchase Pension Plan, which is funded by an allocation from wages, and the 401(k) plan, which provides participants an opportunity to contribute voluntarily on a tax-deferred basis. Through your 401(k) contributions, you can shelter up to $19,000 ($25,000 if you are age 50 or over) from current taxes. Your contributions are made prior to federal income tax withholding and earn on a tax-deferred basis. You determine the amount of the contributions and the investment selections. Over time, the compounding return of your investments without taxes can help your savings grow considerably more than an equal investment that is taxed annually.

Upon retirement, you can rollover your 401(k) monies to an Individual Retirement Account and continue with the same tax deferred benefit. It is only the money that is withdrawn from the Plan or your IRA that is subject to taxes; the balance continues tax deferred, which will help it last further in retirement. 

Forms for enrollment, investment selection and beneficiary designation are available at the www.sailors.org website under the SUP Welfare Plan tab. You may also request forms from your ship captain, or they may be requested from your Port Agent or the SUP Welfare Plan Office. For more information about investment options in either the SUP Money Purchase Pension Plan or 401(k) Plan, please contact The Standard at (800) 858-5420 or log into your account at www.standard.com/retirement. First time users to the Plans website will need to register their account and create a unique user name and password. There are a number of resources through the Plans website—articles, videos, and calculators, etc. — to assist you in planning your future retirement security

April, 2019

Money Purchase Plan and 401(k) Withdrawals
In order for an active participant to withdraw money from the Money Purchase Plan or the 401(k) Plan, the member must sign a “Confirmation of Surrender of Seniority Shipping Rights.” By signing this form the member gives up all rights to work for any of the covered employers and the Sailors Union of the Pacific.
Withdrawal forms can be requested from the Plan office or online at sailors.org under the SUP Welfare tab. 
Loans, Hardship Withdrawals, and In-Service Withdrawals are not permitted. 
All active medical and dental coverage will terminate in the month following the date of the withdrawal. As an example if the form is signed April 23, 2019, coverage will be terminated May 1, even if the sailor has earned eligibility beyond that date. 
Required Minimum Distribution
If an active participant is 70½ years of age, the member must work at least 62 days in a calendar year to remain an active participant and not be required to accept the Required Minimum Distribution. If the member works 62 days in a calendar year and takes the Required Minimum Distribution, the member must continue to take the Required Minimum Distribution in all following years even if 62 days are worked in the calendar year. 
If a member is 70½ years of age and does not work 62 days in a calendar year, the member will be required to take a Required Minimum Distribution.

March, 2019

Initial Active Eligibility & Coverage
Active members become eligible for coverage in the month after they work 120  mandays within a 12-month period. Once a member becomes eligible, the member must enroll in a plan for coverage. The medical and dental plan choices are dependent upon your residence or the port from which you ship. 
Continuing Eligibility & Coverage for Active Participants
After the initial eligibility requirements have been met, continuing eligibility requires the participant to work at least 60 eligible mandays within the eligibility period. The time worked for continuing eligibility may change the beginning and ending months for the new eligibility period because continuing eligibility is a rolling eligibility period. The new eligibility period starts in the month following the 60th manday worked. Please contact the SUP Welfare Plan office for Eligibility questions, especially if you will not be shipping for an extended period of time.
As an example, if a member with a Group One Eligibility period January 1, 2019 through December 31, 2019 ships 60 Group One Days in June and July 2019, the new Group One Eligibility period will be August 1, 2019 through July 31, 2020. A new rolling eligibility period begins in the month following the 60th Group One Day worked. The time worked does not add 12-months onto his previous eligibility. 
If a member with a Group Two Eligibility period January 1, 2019 through June 30, 2019 works 60 Group Two Days in March and April 2019, the new Group Two Eligibility period will be May 1, 2019 through October 31, 2019. A new rolling eligibility period begins in the month following the 60th Group Two Day worked. The time worked does not add 6-months onto his previous eligibility. 
Group One Mandays can count for Group One, Group Two, or Group Three eligibility. Group Two Mandays can count for Group Two, or Group Three eligibility.
Group Three Mandays can count only for Group Three eligibility.
Group One eligibility is good for 12-months of member and dependent coverage. Group Two eligibility is good for 6-months of member and dependent coverage. Group Three eligibility is good for 6-months of member only coverage.

February, 2019

Member Assistance Program
The Member Assistance Program is a confidential, professional resource that is provided by your Trust Fund. It includes a staff of counselors, psychologists and other professionals to help Members and their dependents resolve personal problems. The services are provided by Human Behavior Associates, Inc.
Human Behavior Associates is a private firm that specializes in providing employee counseling and assistance programs. The staff includes psychologists, clinical social workers, marriage and family therapists and addiction counselors.
All contact between employees and the Member Assistance Program is strictly confidential. Your Trust Fund has contracted with Human Behavior Associates to provide a specific number of no-cost counseling sessions. For continued treatment, you will be referred to your medical plan. Be sure to enroll in a medical plan. There may be charges for continued treatment.
To request help call 1-800-937-7770 or collect at 707-747-0117. The help line is available 24 hours per day. The program staff will refer you to the appropriate resource for your issues. You will be referred to local counselors and treatment centers, self-help programs and other sources for immediate assistance.
You can also contact Human Behavior Associates, Inc. on line at 
www.callhba.com.

January, 2019

Kaiser Prescription Drug Copayment
Reimbursement Procedures

All prescription copayment receipts submitted to the Welfare Plan for reimbursement must indicate the name of the patient. Due to patient privacy considerations, Kaiser of Northern and Southern California has discontinued providing this information on prescription receipts without authorization from the Plan participant. Therefore, when SUP Members pickup prescriptions from Kaiser they should request and complete a form entitled “Authorization for Use and Disclosure of Pharmacy Information.”  With this information on file, Kaiser will provide the Plan participant with a detailed print-out of prescriptions purchased which includes all the information necessary for the Plan Office to process the participant’s claim for copay reimbursements.
If the participant forgets to request and complete the “Authorization for Use and Disclosure of Pharmacy Information” form, a photo of the prescription bottle label showing the participant name, drug name and prescription number may be submitted with the prescription receipt for reimbursement.
Reimbursement for Vision Care
The vision care benefit for active participants is allowed once in a 24-month period. The $200.00 maximum includes the exam and glasses. The cost of tints is not included in the reimbursable amount. The vision benefit is for members only and does not include dependents. An itemized bill must be submitted to the Plan office within 90 days of the service. The bill must indicate the name and address of the provider of services, the patient’s name, date of service, and an itemization of the charges. 
The vision care allowance for pensioners is included in the $1,500.00 maximum of the Pensioners Annual Allowance for medical, dental, and vision co-payments. Glasses are an allowable expense once in a fiscal year. The fiscal year runs from August 01 to July 31 of the following calendar year. The Member and the covered spouse are both eligible for the vision care benefit under the Pensioners Annual Allowance. 
Unfit for Duty
It is important to inform the SUP Welfare Plan office when you become Unfit For Duty and have doctor’s documentation of your Unfit For Duty sent to the Plan office. The Plan office should be notified and documentation sent when the Unfit For Duty occurs. Contractual obligations require the Plan to act in a timely manner. Any delay may limit our ability to make corrective actions to help you. Updated information should be sent as your situation progresses.
Termination of Coverage and Reestablishing Coverage
If coverage is terminated, you must enroll in a Plan again after you have worked the required time for new eligibility. Re-enrollment in a Plan is not automatic when you begin working again.