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Protecting Your Future / While you Build ours
Protecting Your Future / While you Build ours
Protecting Your Future / While you Build ours
Protecting Your Future / While you Build ourse
Protecting Your Future / While you Build ours
Protecting Your Future / While you Build ours

Security Benefit Fund

Types Of Benefits

The Security Benefit Fund provides benefits for: periods of lost wages,financial assistance benefit, housing benefit, severance benefits, scholarship benefits, term life insurance benefits and funeral and death benefits. Many of these benefits are subject to tax withholding and year end tax reporting.

A detailed description of each benefit, the documentation needed for payment, and the applicable tax reporting is explained below.

Wage Replacement Benefits

You can apply for reimbursement for periods that you may suffer a loss of wages due to unemployment, disability, workers’ compensation, or jury duty, job shut-down, military service and inpatient substance abuse. 

The amount of reimbursement for periods of lost wages is equal to your wage rate for the period, less the amount of the payment you receive from any other source.

Unemployment:

If you become unemployed, you must complete and have notarized the yellow-colored Application For Unemployment ONLY along with a copy of the "Official Record of Benefit Payment History" (ORBPH) issued by the New York State Department of Labor (NYSDOL) indicating the week you were unemployed. The waiting week will be eligible for benefit payment. Subsequent benefit payments for a continued period of unemployment will require an updated copy of the ORBPH in order to substantiate your continued employment. You can mail, email (securitybenefit@steamny.com), fax or present in person your ORBPH to prove your continued unemployment. If you return to work and become unemployed at a later date a new application must be filed.Thereafter, each week that you remain unemployed simply call the Fund Office Help Desk at Ext.244 and report your continued unemployment. A check from your account balance will be promptly issued. .

The Fund Office will audit your unemployment requests to be sure all benefits are appropriate. 

The amount of reimbursement you will receive will be equal to your base wage rate for the period less the amount of your State unemployment benefits, limited to your account balance.

For Example:

If you are a journeyman steamfitter, with an account balance of $7,000 and you have a two week period of unemployment, you may be reimbursed as follows:

One week base wage including vacation pay for journeyman

($61.75 x 40 hours)   $2,470      

Less State unemployment for 1 week (420)

Gross reimbursement $2,050

The actual amount you are reimbursed is limited to your account balance.

In direct correlation with NYSDOL Unemployment Insurance benefits, replacement wages for unemployment will run on a Monday to Sunday benefit period.

There are two (2) limited cases you are not eligible for NYSDOL Unemployment benefits:

1. You did not work sufficiently to establish eligibility with the NYSDOL

2. You exceeded the 26 weeks of unemployment benefits allowed by the NYSDOL in any one benefit year

You can apply for replacement wages upon presentation of your proof of ineligibility from the NYSDOL along with any other documentation the Trustees may require to substantiate your claim.

Disability and Workers’ Compensation:

To receive either of these supplemental benefits you must complete the "Workers' Compensation, Disability or Jury Duty Only" application and check the appropriate box. As in the case of unemployment, you must attach a copy of the first Disability or Workers’ Compensation check you receive to the application to document your claim.

The amount of reimbursement you will receive is equal to your wage rate for the period, less the amount you have received from the appropriate agency, not to exceed your account balance.

Please see the unemployment section for an example of how your reimbursement is calculated.

If your entitlement to benefits under any State law ceases, you may still be able to receive payment from the Fund subject to a signed affidavit. You will be asked to render proof of your continued inability to work, to the Trustees satisfaction.

While you are waiting to receive benefits from the appropriate agency, you may receive reimbursements, as in the case of unemployment, by submitting the signed affidavit and contacting the Fund Office each week.

Disability and Workers’ Compensation benefits are subject to income tax withholding for Federal, New York State and New York City taxes, as well as F.I.C.A., and will be reported on a Form W-2 at year end.

Jury Duty:

If you are called to serve jury duty, you may apply for a supplemental jury duty benefit to replace lost wages. On the "Workers' Compensation, Disability or Jury Duty Only" application and check the box for jury duty and submit a copy of your subpoena for jury duty service and payment by the Court.

You will be reimbursed based on a seven hour day at your wage rate for the period, for each day of jury service less the amount received from the Court and your employer. This benefit is subject to Federal, New York State, New York City, and F.I.C.A. withholding taxes, on a weekly basis, and is reported to you on Form W-2 at year end.

Severance Benefit

The severance benefit allows you to elect to withdraw a substantial amount from your Security Benefit Fund account.

You are first eligible to apply for the severance benefit after no contributions have been made to this, or any of the related Funds, for six consecutive months. You have two years from your eligibility date to apply for your severance benefit, provided you do not return to work in the industry.

The severance benefit can be paid to you in a lump sum or in equal quarterly amounts. However, no payments can be made beyond the two year application period. The amount of your total benefit will be equal to twice your earnings in the 12 months prior to your severance from the industry or the amount such earnings would have been had you worked the full year.

If you are eligible for a severance benefit and you do not apply in the two year period, your application period will expire. In order to again be eligible for the severance, you must return to work in the industry for a minimum of 750 hours. Once you’ve met this requirement, you will be eligible for the severance after two consecutive calendar quarters of no contributions as described above.

If you take your severance benefit, you may be eligible for a second severance benefit. To be eligible for a second severance benefit, you must have five calendar years in which you have worked a minimum of 750 hours in each year. You would then be eligible for a second severance under the rules described above.

The severance benefit is considered to be taxable income and is subject to all withholding taxes, including FICA, and will be reported to you and the Internal Revenue Service on Form W-2 at year end.

Funeral Benefit

Funeral expenses paid by you for a dependent for which you receive no reimbursement from any other source continue to be eligible for reimbursement. An application for a funeral benefit shall be filed along with a notarized affidavit, a copy of the death certificate in support of the claim and verification of the expense. At the end of the year in which the benefit is paid, a Form 1099-M will be sent to you and the Internal Revenue Service.

Death Benefit

Upon your death, any balance in your account will be paid to your designated beneficiary. Your beneficiary, family member, or friend should contact the Fund Office and send in a copy of the death certificate and appropriate identification. At the end of the year in which the benefit is paid, a Form 1099-M will be sent to the beneficiary and the Internal Revenue Service. This benefit is subject to tax and may require that estimated tax payments be made.

Scholarship Benefit

The Scholarship Benefit is available for all employees spouses, children and dependents who are enrolled full-time or part time basis in an accredited educational institution. Covered expenses include tuition, room and board, books and supplies.

Accredited educational institutions include universities, colleges, technical institutes, junior colleges, nursing, medical, dental and law schools. You are responsible to pay the educational or technical institution yourself and will be reimbursed from the Fund.  It will be necessary to submit all receipts, invoices, canceled checks, credit card statements, etc. to substantiate the application for benefit. All information provided will be verified with the educational institution and payment could take as long as six weeks depending on the timeliness of the reply from the institution.

Federal, New York State, New York City and FICA taxes will be withheld from all benefit payments based on the information you provide on the application. This benefit will be income to you in the year issued and will be reported as such on a Form W-2 at year end.

If you file a claim for someone other than a spouse or child, the individual must be listed as your dependent with the Welfare Fund.

Term Life Insurance Benefits

This benefit is available to reimburse a member for the premium expense associated with an annual term life insurance policy. The benefit can be used for the member's policy or for that of a legal dependent.

The appropriate application must be completed and submitted with a copy of the term life insurance premium notice. The "face" value of the term life insurance policy cannot exceed $1 million.

This benefit is subject to all applicable Federal, New York State, New York City and FICA withholding taxes. This benefit will be income to you in the year the benefit check is issued and will be reported to you on Form W-2 at year end.

Financial Assistance Benefit

For any part of the month in which you are unable to work as a steamfitter, the Fund will reimburse you in an amount not to exceed your account balance for your unpaid home mortgage, co-op mortgage and maintenance fees, rent or property taxes on your primary residence for that same month.

The Fund will require a copy of an Unemployment, Disability or Workers Compensation check for a week ending period in that month in order to reimburse you for that month. For example, if your check is for the period of July 26th through August 1st (thus, the week ending period of this check is August 1st) reimbursement for financial assistance would be for the month of August even if most of the period was in July.

If you have exhausted or are ineligible for Unemployment Benefits, the Fund will require a letter from the appropriate state agency verifying your ineligibility for unemployment benefits.

Documentation supporting your financial assistance request such as an unpaid mortgage invoice, co-op fee statement, property tax bill, or rent invoice must be in the member or spouse's name only. A letter from the landlord verifying rent due (for each month you apply) when there is no written lease in effect is sufficient.

Benefit applications will be available from the Fund Office in late June. The amount of the benefit requested cannot exceed your account balance and is conditioned upon both audit verification and Trustee approval. This benefit is subject to all federal, state, city and employment withholding taxes.

Housing Benefit

This benefit can be used for certain costs associated with the purchase of a residence, for the initial costs associated with a rental and for costs to prevent foreclosure or eviction as long as the residence is your primary residence and is located within a reasonable commuting distance of the Local 638 jurisdiction. Because the Fund cannot provide post-retirement housing benefits, retired participants are excluded from this benefit at this time.

Costs or fees related to the purchase of a primary residence that are eligible under this benefit include, but not limited to, the following: loan originations, loan discounts, appraisals, credit reports, lender's inspections, mortgage insurance applications, tax services, flood checks, document preparations, title searches, title examinations, title insurance binders, attorneys, title insurance, governmental recordings, state taxes, and surveys. The initial costs related to a rental may include the first and last month's rent and broker's fees or commissions. Documentation supporting this benefit will include a signed contract of sale, mortgage application, Good Faith estimate, legal documents pertaining to the construction of a new home, copy of rental lease, foreclosure or eviction notices and/or any other documents so requested. All documents must be in the member or spouse's name only.

Benefit applications will be available from the Fund Office in late June. The amount of the benefit requested cannot exceed your account balance and is conditioned upon both audit verification and Trustee approval. This benefit is subject to all federal, state, city and employment withholding taxes.

Claim Forms

Claim forms for the various benefits are available at the Fund Office. Please call, and the Fund Office will mail you the forms you need or go to the Forms Section of this Website.

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