Retiree benefits

Securing benefits in retirement

The Steelworkers Benefit Plan (SBP) knows how important your benefits are to you and your family during your working life, and they are even more important in your retirement. Yet so many of our members face retirement with little or no health benefits. Those that do have post-retirement benefits face the uncertainty of the employer continuing to provide them in the future.

Retirement should be a period of enjoyment and relaxation, not filled with the unnecessary worry of how to pay for much needed prescriptions.

Negotiating retiree benefits has become very difficult as a result of the employers’ obligation to report the liability for future retiree benefits on their financial statements.

The Steelworkers Benefit Plan has designed a unique way to provide retiree benefits. The sooner a local union negotiates its participation in SBP, the better the retiree benefits will be in the long term.

How does it work?

Through an innovative approach to retiree benefits, your local union can begin to easily participate. By negotiating a contribution from the employer to the SBP, the assets will accumulate in a separate account under the umbrella of the SBP. Those contributions, and interest, are accounted for separately and are used to provide retiree benefits just for your retirees.

The advantage of structuring the Plan in this manner is to limit the liability on the employer, the SBP and the local union. The benefits are limited to the value of the assets in your local’s retiree account. But with careful funding and starting contributions early, your members can enjoy the security of benefit coverage when they retire.

What retiree benefits are available? 

The concept is flexible enough to allow participating bargaining units to design a benefit package that meets the needs of its participants. Actual benefits are based on the needs, assets and ongoing contributions of each participating unit. You and your members decide what benefits to provide.

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