CCA Health Insurance Plans (2016)
Many of you have had questions about what, if any, health benefits are available to us as CCA's. After some digging on LiteBlue and the NALCs health benefits web sites, here is what I have found:
You have to make an election within the first 60 days of your start date or wait until open enrollment to enroll in a plan. This year's open enrollment for the FEHB (Federal Employee Health Benefit plan is from November 9, 2015 - December 14, 2015.
If you have not completed a 360-day period of service, you have only one plan option:
You can choose to enroll in USPS FEHB Non-career plan (with either self-only, self plus one or family coverage).
2016 Premium Rates for FEHB:
If you enroll in the USPS health benefit plan, you will receive a Postal Service contribution of at least $125 per pay period and have your Self Only premium capped at 9.5% of your gross pay each pay period. This brings your maximum contribution to $35 per pay period. If you elect Self Plus One, your coverage will cost an additional $160 per pay period above your Self Only contribution, for a maximum of $195 per pay period. If you elect Self and Family, your coverage will cost an additional $320 per pay period above your Self Only contribution, for a maximum of $355 per pay period.
To get an idea of what this plan covers, deductibles, etc. you can check out a summary of benefits here. Again, this is just to get an idea as this is for the 2015 plan year. If you choose to enroll in this plan you may do so online on PostalEase. Once logged into PostalEASE the FEHB link is located under the Benefits heading from the PostalEASE Employee Web Main Menu. You can also enrollee over the phone: PostalEASE Self-Service Phone: 1-877-477-3273, option 1.
If you are a CCA who has served 360 days, you have three options:
You can choose self-only, self plus one or self & family coverage in the USPS FEHB Non-career Plan referred to above along with the same pricing listed above.
As a NALC member, you can choose to become a member and select self plus one or self & family coverage (not self-only) from the NALC Consumer Driven Plan or Value Option Plan and receive the $125 bi-weekly contribution from USPS (See next section for rates)
You can choose self-only, self plus one or self & family coverage in any plan offered through the FEHB Program, but receive no contribution toward premium costs.
2016 rates for the NALC health plans offered to CCAs that have served 360+ days:
NALC Consumer Driven Health Plan (CDHP)
Self Only: $200.24
Self Plus One: $309.79
Self and Family: $309.80
NALC Health Benefit Plan Value Option
Self Only: $172.40
Self Plus One: $249.38
Self and Family: $249.39
If you would like to see an idea of what the NALC health plans cover, providers, summary of benefits, etc. go to http://www.nalchbp.org/ and select the tabs labeled Consumer Driven Health Plan or Value Option Plan to learn more. I believe you can also enroll in the NALC Health plans on this site.
Retirement Savings plans with the MBA
Health insurance is only one of the benefits of being a CCA. We also have access to Retirement Savings plans with the MBA.
The NALC CCA Retirement Savings Plan is a retirement income plan designed CCA’s to supplement your pension. You make small payments to the plan while so you can receive a lifetime of monthly payments after you retire—even if you live to be 200!
Under the NALC CCA Retirement Savings Plan, you can also request a guaranteed number of monthly payments.
CCA's who participate in the plan may transfer their Traditional IRA funds to the Thrift Savings Plan once they become a regular carrier. The Surrender Charge will be waived in this instance only.
You choose the amount you want to contribute to your NALC CCA Retirement Savings Plan. It can be as little as $15 per pay period (the minimum amount allowed). You may also select your method of payment: MBA can deduct payments automatically from your paycheck, or bill you monthly or annually.
With as little as a one-time $15.00 payment, your can start your NALC CCA Retirement Savings Plan and never have to make any additional deposits in order to maintain your policy in force. You may also make a lump sum deposit into the NALC CCA Retirement Savings Plan at any time to help build your plan’s value.
As your NALC CCA Retirement Savings Plan grows, you can expect to earn competitive interest rates. The plan is tax-deferred, which means you do not pay taxes on any of your interest until you draw on it, further improving your yield.
When you're ready to retire, MBA offers a choice of four ways to collect monthly benefits:
Life Annuity With Period Certain. Receive a lifetime of monthly payments. You're guaranteed this income for as long as you live. If you die during a specified period (5, 10, 15 or 20 years), payments go to your beneficiary until the end of the period.
Life Annuity- Receive monthly payments through your lifetime. No further benefits will be paid after your death.
Joint Life Annuity- You or your beneficiary receive monthly payments as long as either of you live.
Full Cash Refund. Receive monthly payments as long as you are alive. When you die, the MBA will pay any money in your account to your beneficiary.
If you are interested in enrolling in this plan, you can go here and click on "all other states" at the bottom for a link to the enrollment form and the steps to complete it.