the Future Health Account (FHA)
- If you are a "second
choicer" and chose the old pension plan, you did not get the old medical
plan. You've got the Future Health Account (FHA).
- The FHA replaces the
old comprehensive insurance plan, which was linked to the actual cost of
health care. The new plan makes only a limited contribution toward the purchase
of retiree health benefits.
- IBM contributes for
only 10 years, between age 40 and 50.
- Once you retire, you
must use the fund to purchase all of your health benefits. IBM does not
contribute anything once you retire.
- You may only use the
fund to purchase health care benefits from IBM. You cannot use the fund
to buy a different or more economical plan.
- Once the account is
depleted, you must purchase your own health care coverage, which is projected
to be $8,000 to $15,000 per year in the future.
- You are now vulnerable
to the rising cost of health care in your retirement years, when your income
is also the most vulnerable.
- IBM can cancel this
plan at any time. Unlike pension funds, there is no legal protection for
the FHA fund, so you could lose the entire amount.
benefits run out?
- For many IBM employees,
the FHA fund will be depleted before reaching Medicare eligibility.
- Read an excellent booklet
about the FHA that was researched and written by CWA's benefits analysts,
by asking a fellow Alliance member for a copy, or calling the Alliance office,
607-729-4652 to have one mailed to your home.
- No. CWA has negotiated
contract provisions with many employers that make retiree health benefits
more affordable and at the same time assure retirees continued access to
top quality health care. For instance, employers can:
- Establish a trust
to pre-fund retiree health benefits · Transfer excess pension assets
(IBM has an $8 billion surplus) to fund retiree health benefits
- Set generous company
- Delay effective
date of retiree premium sharing
- Protect retiree
benefit levels (over)
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