To: NY/NE Local Presidents –Verizon Locals
From: Gladys Finnigan, Assistant to the Vice President
Date: October 19, 2015
Re: 2016 Verizon Open Enrollment Notification
The 2016 Annual Open Enrollment Dates are as follows:
November 9, 2015 to November 20, 2015 – (these dates are for Active employees and Retirees)
(Retirees continue to have “Anytime Enrollment” When a retiree makes a change outside of the Annual Enrollment period, the change is effective the first of the month following a 30 day period. So, under “Anytime Enrollment” a retiree could make a change up through December 1, 2015 to be effective January 1, 2016.
Members who want to stay with their plan without any changes don’t need to do anything.
If you have a Qualified Life Event between now and the end of the year, you will need to make changes on BenefitsConnections for both 2015 and 2016. Examples of a Qualified Status Change are adding a spouse if you get married, adding a child when there is a birth of a new baby.
Open Enrollment Guides will be sent to employees and retirees toward the end of October.
Health Assessment Credit
Any member who previously completed a Health Assessment will receive the $100 Health Assessment credit in 2016. There is no need to complete a new assessment, if you are currently receiving the credit.
If you are not currently receiving the Health Assessment credit, complete the Health Assessment by December 10, 2015 to receive a $100 credit toward your annual medical plan contributions for 2016. Completion of the Health Assessment after December 10, 2015 but before December 31, 2015 may delay your full credit.
Non- Tobacco User Credit - $600
- If you are a non tobacco user and are already receiving credit, no further action is needed.
- If you are not receiving this credit and DO NOT use tobacco products, indicate your NON-TOBACCO status on BenefitsConnection to receive your $600 credit towards your annual medical contributions.
- If you and your covered dependents DO USE tobacco products but have completed a tobacco cessation course within the last six months indicate your status on BenefitsConnections during Open Enrollment for the full credit.
- If you have NOT Yet completed a tobacco cessation course, you can earn the full Non-Tobacco Credit in 2016 if you and/or your covered dependents satisfy the reasonable alternative standard as follows;
1.) During Annual Enrollment, log on to BenefitsConnection and answer the Tobacco User Status question while completing your Annual Enrollment elections: - answer YES and intend to complete a tobacco cessation course before July 31, 2016.
2.) Before July 31, 2016, complete a tobacco cessation course such as QuitNet or the Verizon HealthZone Health Assistant, and log on to BenefitsConnection. Answer the Tobacco User Status question: YES and completed a tobacco cessation course within the last 6 months.
You MUST update your Tobacco User Status response by July 31, 2016 in order to receive the full Non-Tobacco credit. Any update made to your tobacco user status after July 31, 2016 will result in a prorated credit for the remainder of the year.
In the 2016 plan year, the cost of coverage for certain Pre-Medicare plan options will exceed the applicable retiree caps and will require contributions. Your current elections will automatically continue unless you make a change. Pre Medicare Retirees should carefully review the open enrollment materials and elect the plan that is best for you.
Additional information which goes into detail on the retiree CAPS, will be available on the BenefitsConnection website or can be requested from the Verizon Benefits Center. The name of the guide is: “A Supplemental Guide- Retiree Medical Contributions”.
The billing process will remain unchanged from the process that is in place today for those who are already making contributions.
There may be some retirees who will be making contributions toward retiree medical for the first time in 2016.
- Anyone that is enrolled in a benefit that requires contributions will receive a bill.
- Bills are mailed by the 15th of each month with a due date of the first of the following month. For example, the bill for the contributions for January 2016 will be mailed/posted to the web by December 15, 2015 with a due date of January 1, 2016.
Retirees can elect to have contributions paid via ACH debit or pension deduction:
- Because ACH direct debit is the fastest and easiest way for a retiree to pay for coverage, it is highlighted on each monthly invoice that is mailed home to encourage enrollment. The retiree can enroll in this option on the secure BenefitsConnection website by providing his/her routing and checking account number. The balance due would be debited out of their account on the first business day of the month. For example, January’s balance would be debited on 1/4/2016.
- A retiree who is receiving a monthly pension also has the option to have his/her deductions taken from their pension check. A retiree would have to call the Benefit Center and speak with a representative to enroll in this option.
A New Tax Form is Coming for Active Employees and Pre Medicare Retirees
The Affordable Care Act requires proof of healthcare coverage at tax time. As a result, a new tax form that shows your health care coverage for the prior year will be sent out to active employees and pre Medicare retirees in January 2016. The form is called a 1095.
Life & Accidental Death & Dismemberment Insurance (AD&D)
There is a decrease in rates for 2016 for life insurance for active employees and retirees as well as for AD&D insurance for active employees.
Annual enrollment offers you the opportunity to make changes to your current life insurance coverage amounts and/or waive coverage. If you choose to continue your coverage, no further action is required.
A separate letter will be mailed to retirees who are currently enrolled in Supplemental life insurance regarding the rate decrease.
Similar to last year, confirmation statements will not be distributed to employees and retirees. Confirmation statements can be printed out on the BenefitsConnection website or one can be requested by calling the Benefits Center.