The 1974 Pension Plan (the “Plan”), is a defined benefit plan. That means that the Plan specifies the eligibility requirements to receive a pension or death benefit and specifies how the amounts of those benefits are determined. The Plan provides retirement (service) pensions, disability pensions, and pensions for the surviving spouses of some mine workers. The 1950 Pension Plan merged into the 1974 Pension Plan effective June 30, 2007. The basic eligibility rules for the different types of pensions are described below. More detailed information is provided in the Summary Plan Description of the UMWA 1974 Pension Plan.
In general, mineworkers who have worked in the bituminous coal industry before January 1, 2012, may qualify for a service pension in any one of the following situations:
In general, there are no age or service requirements for a disability pension. Any mine worker may qualify for a disability pension if he or she meets the following requirements:
In general, Surviving Spouse pensions or Joint & Survivor Annuity benefits may be paid to the eligible spouses of mineworkers who died while receiving, or in some cases while eligible to receive, a pension from the 1974 Pension Plan. The Plan also provides a Pre-retirement spousal annuity to the surviving spouses of mineworkers who met the service requirements for a pension but died before commencing benefits.
A 1950 Widow’s Pension may be paid to the eligible widows of 1950 Participants who died while receiving a 1950 pension.
For 1974 Pension Plan Participants, the Plan may pay a death benefit to the named beneficiary of a pensioner who dies and was receiving, or had applied for and was eligible to receive, pension benefits at the time of death. Under certain situations, death benefits may also be paid to the beneficiary of an eligible new inexperienced miners who first work in the coal industry on or after January 1, 2012, and the beneficiary of an eligible miner who opts out of participation in the 1974 Pension Plan after that date. A death benefit is not paid for those pensioners if any of the following apply:
For 1950 Participants, the Plan pays a death benefit to the widow or other eligible dependent of a deceased pensioner, or, if there are no eligible surviving dependents, to the pensioner’s estate. A death benefit is not paid for those 1950 pensioners if either of the following apply:
Death benefits are not paid to the survivors of widows who were receiving any of the survivor benefits paid to eligible surviving spouses under the Plan.