May/June 2020 Issue
April 25, 2020

NYSUT retirees maintain your membership

Source: NYSUT Member Benefits
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The transition from active employment to retirement brings some challenges that must be carefully handled. We encourage you to look to your union and NYSUT Member Benefits to assist during this important time in your life.

You must maintain NYSUT membership as a retiree to continue participating in NYSUT Member Benefits-endorsed programs and services. Please take the appropriate steps now to ensure continuation of your NYSUT membership. You can accomplish this in one of two ways: 1. If your local offers retiree membership, you must continue membership within your local. Compliance with your local’s retiree membership requirements is a prerequisite for continued membership in NYSUT and the American Federation of Teachers (one of NYSUT’s national affiliates).

2. If your local does not provide some form of retiree membership, you will continue as an at-large retiree member of NYSUT (and AFT) through the retiree council in your region. To ensure continuation of NYSUT membership, make sure your local reports you as retired, and either changes your dues code to “3” or writes “retired” on the membership report sent to NYSUT.

Retiree membership is not automatic for the National Education Association, NYSUT’s other national affiliate. You may choose to join NEA as a Lifetime Retiree for a one-time fee of $300.

At this time, as a current NYSUT member or retiree already participating in NEA Member Benefits, you do not need to purchase retiree membership with NEA. For information on how to join NEA National and an enrollment form, contact NYSUT Retiree Services at 800-342-9810.

If you are a non-lifetime NEA retiree member or know someone who has been lost from the NEA/NY rolls, contact NYSUT Member Records at 800-342-9810, for information on how to join NYSUT and NEA as a retiree.

For questions about establishing retiree membership, contact the following membership departments:

  • United Federation of Teachers members: 212-598-6855;
  • United University Professions members: 800-342-4206;
  • Professional Staff Congress/CUNY members: 212-354-1252.

All other NYSUT members: 800-342-9810.

If you have questions about maintaining your NYSUT membership or would like further info on NYSUT retiree programs, contact the NYSUT Retiree Services consultant serving your region:

  • Buffalo area (RC 1-3, 44): Tracy Beatty, 716-634-7132
  • Jamestown area (RC 4, 46): Louise Ortman, 716-664-7425
  • Rochester area (RC 5-6): Peter Randazzo, 585-454-5550
  • Syracuse/Utica area (RC 7-8): Anne Marie Voutsinas, 315-431-4040
  • North Country/Capital District (RC 9-10): Ruth Shippee, 518-825-0730
  • Southern Tier (RC 11, 45): Mark Padgett, 607-786-5742
  • Greater Capital District/Mid-Hudson area (RC 12-13): Jennifer Shaad-Derby, 518-783-7977
  • Orange, Rockland, Putnam and Westchester counties (RC 14-16): Ellen Pincus, 914-592-4411
  • Nassau region (RC 17-19): Claire Zatorski, 516-496-2035
  • Suffolk region (RC 20-23): Joan Perrini, 631-273-8822
  • Florida (RC 43): Judith Kalb, 561-994-4929, ext. 129.

Payroll to pension deduction

The transition from payroll deduction of NYSUT Member Benefits-endorsed programs to pension deduction is neither immediate nor automatic. However, following the steps below should help to ensure a smooth process. Please note: You must be receiving your permanent monthly pension benefit from the New York State Teachers’ Retirement System, New York City Teachers’ Retirement System, New York State Employees’ Retirement System, New York City Board of Education Retirement System, or receive income from a monthly lifetime annuity from TIAA to be eligible for pension deduction of Member Benefits-endorsed programs.

Contact Member Benefits at 800-626-8101 when you know your definite retirement date. Member Benefits will then communicate that information to each plan administrator of the programs you participate in.

Call each plan administrator of programs you participate in to verify your address so you can be billed at home once your payroll deductions stop; Member Benefits can provide you with the necessary contact information. You should receive a bill for each program you had on payroll deduction. If you do not receive a bill, contact the applicable program administrator to verify a bill was mailed to your proper address. Any discounts you enjoyed with payroll deduction will continue for up to one year with your home billing. Pension deduction yields the same discounts offered as payroll deduction.

Make sure to pay each bill you receive. You must be on home billing for at least one billing cycle so your pension system has time to put your permanent monthly pension benefit in place. Even though you may be receiving a monthly pension benefit, this does not mean your permanent benefit has been finalized. Deductions can only be taken from the permanent benefit; this can take up to six months.

When you receive the bill for the next premium, it should include a Pension Deduction Authorization Card. Complete and sign the card, and send it back with the bill to the plan administrator in lieu of payment. If you do not receive a Pension Deduction Authorization Card with your second bill, contact Member Benefits for one to be sent to you.

Upon receipt of your Pension Deduction Authorization Card, the plan administrator will transmit the details to Member Benefits regarding pension deduction of your program(s). Member Benefits will then submit this information to your pension system to start the deductions with your next monthly benefit. This process must be done for each program you participate in. Contact Member Benefits if you have any questions along the way, and allow time for each of the steps above to be completed.

If you have any questions about continuing NYSUT Member Benefits-endorsed programs or navigating the pension deduction process, please visit memberbenefits.nysut.org or call 800-626-8101.

For information about contractual endorsement= arrangements with providers of endorsed programs, please contact NYSUT Member Benefits.

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