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Wednesday, May 15, 2019

UC is not your friend!


https://www.nbcbayarea.com/investigations/Theyre-waiting-for-us-to-die--Ten-Year-Battle-Over-Health-Benefits-for-UC-Lab-Retirees-Finally-Heads-to-Trial-509864601.html

17 comments:

Anonymous said...

This makes no sense to me. Lab retiree health care only applies to those retirees under the age of 65, when all retirees are forced onto Medicare, regardless of whether they retired from UC, LLNS, or LANS. How does a 76 year old retiree still have lab health care??

Anonymous said...

Medicare does not cover everything. Hence, it is necessary to have a supplemental private insurance plan which costs extra. There is a monthly bill for Medicare as well. Non-LLNL UC retirees have a much more generous reimbursement plan. "Substantially equivalent" my foot! And yes, just like the guy in the clip, I was given a recruiting brochure that said that UC health care benefits were guaranteed for life. Thank gosh some folks kept their copies.

I was working at a federal lab, and I had ten years in the Civil Service system when a manager from LLNL called to say that some of his people had read my papers and would I be interested in an interview? During my interview with HR I asked about pension and health care benefits and I was told that they were guaranteed and that they were better than those of the Feds. Stupid me! I believed it.

I am sorry that I ever heard of LLNL!

Anonymous said...

UC is full of liars. The worst work with Washington to screw their own employees.

Anonymous said...

Scooby deleted a perfectly innocuous reply to 5/15/2019 8:59 PM indicating that at least for this LANL retiree the Medicare plus LANL-subsidized BC/BS supplement plan results in no out of pocket costs and no copays or deductibles, for just the standard Medicare Part B premium.

Anonymous said...

Sorry. I disagree. I have a very good memory and a objective mind for details. From my first briefing on Benefits on Sept Y, 1976 conducted by Kathy Smith we we're told, and shown in brochures that medical and dental insurance were provided currently, but we're not guaranteed in the future. For employees or retirees. I think the complaint is that UC employee s are treated differently.

scooby said...

I publicized the accidental deletion on subsequent post.

Anonymous said...

the lawsuit is only relevant to LLNL employees who retired before the transition to LLNS. the crux of the lawsuit is that no matter what Kathy Smith or UC or LLNL said, an implicit contract for retiree health coverage had been formed. that contract was between the LLNL employee and UC, not LLNS. some of these LLNL retirees although over 65 are not covered by Medicare (before '76 UC employees did not pay into SocialSecurity/Medicare).

Anonymous said...

5/17/2019 11:13 PM

You can disagree all you want. I'm telling you my current status as a LANL (UC) retiree. I know what UC always said about no guarantee on retiree health care. I also know that it was always clear that after age 65, ALL retirees would be forced onto Medicare, with several options as to the version they could choose (Medicare Part B plus a Medicare Supplement plan or Medicare Part C (Medicare Advantage)) You may be confused about your own current status.

Anonymous said...

11:13 apparently your memory slipped when UC guaranteed anyone with more than 20yrs experience with “100%” lifetime medical upon retirement.

Anonymous said...

5/18/2019 6:42 PM

UC never guaranteed that. It said that after 20 year's service,retiree medical was paid at 100% up to age 65, not that there would be any "lifetime" benefit. No health benefits were or are, available to retirees except Medicare and/or a Lab-sponsored and paid Part C or Supplement plan. Why is understanding this so difficult?

Anonymous said...

5/19/2019 5:52 PM

The implications of an implied contract are for the court to decide. UC would gladly claim they intended no contract but the court has said otherwise. Also, there are definitely LLNL (and UC) retirees who are over 65 and who receive LLNL (or UC) non-Medicare group health coverage. These are largely pre-'76 hires who did not choose to coordinate with SS/Medicare and who did not become Medicare eligible through other work or spousal work.

Anonymous said...

Regarding UC insurance "only applies to those retirees under the age of 65":

What happens when you are going onto medicare, your UC (or any other insurance) becomes your secondary insurance.

Your secondary insurance picks up costs that medicare doesn't cover, helps pay for leftover costs from medicare (for instance in medicare pays for 80%, secondary insurance may pick up the rest/portion of the cost), and very importantly help with the cost of drugs. This is very important if you get cancer, need surgery, or have expensive drugs.

Depending on your secondary insurance, you may have dental (which is not covered by medicare), and a better vision plan.

Healthcare and its insurance gets pretty complex after 65. I've found that helping my elderly parents have opened my eyes on insurance needs after 65.

These employees are using their UC insurance as a secondary insurance, and looking at the cost & coverage or the expense and lack of coverage to what they were promised.


Anonymous said...

If you retired from UC (at LANL) you got very affordable BC/BS National Medicare Supplement that covers all, repeat all, copays and deductibles from original Medicare. You also get free dental from Delta Dental, nationwide coverage. BTW, the BC/BS Medicare Supplement also covers prescription drugs with a small copay. I am failing to see the complexity here. The choices are clear, and very generous.

Anonymous said...

LLNL and LANL health plans are under ERISA and can be terminated at will. Not so UC. UC retiree benefits is what the LLNL retirees were promised. For those under Medicare, UC benefits are generally better than LLNL benefits. And once again I will state that not all LLNL retirees are covered by Medicare, including some older than 65.

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for addressing this issue,
and esp. for the video.
Hope to see the results of future court actions.

It appears that the Retirees website is dormant. Please guys post the progress!

Anonymous said...

Many people do not seem to know that many LLNL employees of an earlier generation were not part of the social security system. In that era it was common for public agency employees to be covered by the public agencies'plans and not social security. Thus I can not get medicare. While it was understood that the health plan coverage for University employees was not guarenteed for life, there never was an indication that Laboratory retirees would be treated any differently than any other University retiree. Thus the lawsuit. If you look at Contract W-ENG-7408 (if I remember correctly) there wa an appendix that covered the continuity of benefits in the event of a successor contractor. Neither the DOE or the UC followed that provision in the new contracts at the transition. Why? Maybe UC was in a groveling posture so as to be included in the group getting the new contract. They would have to have made DOE pay for it, under that provision. How is it we are part of the UC pension system, but not eligible for UC benefits? We were lucky to keep the pension at least, and DOE has to make up any shortfalls in funding.

Don't throw rocks at those pursuing the lawsuit if you are not fully informed of the history.

Anonymous said...

In the early-mid 70's. new employees were given the choice to "coordinate" with SS and Medicare, or not. There was at that time no stated "guarantee" that retiree medical insurance would be lifetime, but many chose it anyway.

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