Q - Should I take the VSPP offer or the ISPP?
A - This is a personal decision, you must consider all the options based on your situation. There are many factors to consider such as how many years of service you have? Do you need to carry the Health Insurance coverage for you and/or your family? How close are you to being Medicare eligible or are you eligible now?
The separation payout is usually higher with the VSPP if you have less than 31 years of service. If you have more than 31 years the payout can be higher, but you also need to consider that the medical premiums are subsidized 6 months longer with VSPP than they are with ISPP. Please take the time to understand your options, ask questions, contact your Union Steward, AVP, or the Union office if you are unsure.
Q - Where in the Force adjustment process does Seasonal Part time offer fit? Can the Tech’s chose Seasonal Part Time at any point?
A- Seasonal Part Time is not part of the Force Adjustment process, it would require a letter of agreement.
Q - How would Seasonal Part Time effect my Pension?
A - Regarding pension:
Hired after 1/1/2009 it is account balance formula the company contributes 3% of total compensation. (no change)
A - Hired before 2009:
How is my pension benefit adjusted if I am a part-time employee?
If you worked part-time at any time during your employment with Qwest or other Participating Companies, your Pension Calculation Service (PCS) is adjusted. This adjustment to PCS affects the amount of your pension benefit, not your TOE (used to determine Service or Disability Pension Eligibility), your Vesting service or your supplemental pension benefit. The adjustment is based on the actual hours you worked and your classification. Your pension benefit is prorated based on the actual hours you worked compared to regular, full-time employment. If, prior to January 1, 1996, records of actual hours are not available, the ratio will be based on scheduled hours compared to regular full-time hours. However, the Plan will consider appropriate documentation (such as Social Security records or appropriate tax records) if you provide evidence that you actually worked more than the scheduled hours as reflected in official Company records.
If you worked part-time (20 hours) during your entire career and retired with 30 years of employment, your pension would be calculated using 15 years of Pension Calculation Service (30 years times 20/40); however, because you had 30 years of TOE (which is not prorated), you would be eligible to receive an unreduced service pension.
Q- Are the Healthcare cards that we use for prescriptions & co-pays good for this whole year?
Q- Will we still get the Rally rewards pay out at the end of the year, for those that participate?
Q- How does phone concessions work for those of us who still have home phone service with CTL.
A- Employees with 30 years and retire get a choice of 100% discount on local service or participating in employee discounts that are offered to active employees. You can read more about this on page 109 of the contract. (if you don’t have a physical contract you can access it online here
Q- Is there a separate healthcare plan for retirees? Or is MNSure my best option?
A- As a retiree you do have the option for retiree health care. MNSure is based on income, but it is worth checking into it once you exhaust your subsidized COBRA.
Q- How do I set up auto pay for Health Care Premiums?
A- You get a COBRA packet you can select your payment method at that time. If you are a retiree and take the annuity you can have the premiums taken from your pension check.
Q- Do they take Social Security or Medicare out of the Monthly Pension checks?
A- No they DO NOT take Social Security or Medicare out of monthly pension.
Q - Is there a CAP on the Payout under VSPP?
A - Yes, it is capped at $3,3000.00. The calculation is $1375 per year prorated for partial year, and capped at $33,000.00.
Q - How will my severance payout be Taxed?
A - The Federal tax is a flat tax of 22%, Nettworth Financial estimates the total tax to be approx 42%.
Q - Is unused vacation payout taxed at the flat rate?
A - Initially we were advised that Vacation was taxed the same way as income, however in doing more research it seems that it may in fact be taxed at the same rate as the severance pay. Please consult your tax advisor for tax related questions.
Q - When does the 36 months for Partners in Education begin?
A - The 36 consecutive months begins on the date following separation from the Company.
Q - What about my Health Benefits?
A - If you leave under VSPP offer you will get COBRA for 18 total months, it will be subsidized (you will pay the same premium you pay today as an active employee) based on your years of service as follows:
Less than 1 year, 6 months subsidized
1 year but less than 5 years, 9 months subsidized
5 years or more, 12 months subsidized
If you leave under ISPP you will get COBRA for 18 total months, it will be subsidized (you will pay the same premium you pay today as an active employee) based on your years of service as follows:
Less than 1 year, 18 months at employees expense
1 year but less than 5 years, 3 months subsidized
5 years and over, 6 months subsidized