Retiree Optional Rider checks to be mailed in February

UFT President Michael Mulgrew, who chairs the union’s Welfare Fund Board of Trustees, is pleased to announce that retirees will be receiving their Optional Rider Reimbursement at the end of February.

This year’s reimbursement continues at the rate of up to $720 for retirees whose optional rider or health plan deduction was in effect for all of 2010. Retirees whose rider or health plan was in effect for less than 12 months will receive reimbursement at the rate of $60 per month. If the monthly deduction was not greater than $60, the Fund will cover the full monthly amount.

Checks are mailed to most retirees automatically. An eligible member who retired in 2010 and does not receive a reimbursement check by April 1 may need to download [go to] or call the Fund Hotline at 1-212-539-0539 for a 2010 Rider Claim Form. Retirees submitting this form should allow at least four weeks for their benefit check to be processed.

Effective January 2006, retirees may be eligible for the optional rider benefit even if their health coverage is not from a New York City health plan. This benefit is available whether the retiree maintains the health plan or is covered under his or her spouse or domestic partner. The retiree must submit a completed Rider Claim Form each year along with documentation showing direct payments or deductions for the health insurance plan. Different claim forms are required depending on whether the reimbursement is for a New York City health plan or for a non-New York City health plan. Both claim forms can be downloaded from the UFT Welfare Fund’s Web site at or obtained by calling the Fund Hotline at 1-212-539-0539.

Retirees who returned to work in positions that provide in-service prescription drug benefits and use this benefit will have their optional rider reimbursement reduced by the cost of the prescription drugs paid by the Fund, calculated on a month-by-month basis.