I was part of a RIF in February 2015. I qualified as a Verizon Retiree due to age and length of service. I know there are a lot of negative comments going on but I wanted to share a few things I discovered today as a Verizon retiree. MAKE SURE THAT YOU CONTACT THE BENEFITS DEPARTMENT IF YOU ARE PART OF A RIF AND ASK QUESTION AFTER QUESTION CONCERNING WHAT YOUR BENEFITS ARE AS A RETIREE AND NON RETIREE. YOU WILL ALSO CONTINUE TO HAVE ACCESS TO THE BENEFITS CONNECTION WEBSITE.....1) phone discounts - 25% and yes there are probably other carriers that offer a better deal. 2) Medical, Dental, Vision Insurance. RETIREE OR NOT, THE SAME COVERAGE YOU HAD AS AN EMPLOYEE WILL be in force for the length of your severance period (unless they change the severance package.) at no cost to you other than deductibles / copays etc. I was riffed in Feb and those remained in effect from Feb 2015 (my last day) through November 2015. 3) Life insurance. I retained the same voluntary amounts I had as an employee through the severance period for the same price I was paying as an employee. NOW that November is here and things are about to change I contacted the benefits this morning to question a few things. I'm speaking from a Verizon retiree perspective. When the severance period ends you will need to access the benefits connection website to update your choices on medical, dental, vision and life. If you do not then you will default to COBRA coverage. The cost was extremely high for both COBRA and the Verizon retiree insurance plan. I'm going to either pick from my current employer's plans (high cost of $700.00/ month) or go out to get my medical, dental, vision elsewhere. But for the retiree life insurance,(not 100% sure if it applies to retirees and non retirees), I can maintain what I had for the same price I was paying as an employee. Have to admit it's a great deal on life insurance and something that concerned me as I want my wife to be secured if something were to happen to me. Life insurance on the open market can be expensive. The main thing I want to get across is to CONTACT THE BENFITS DEPARTMENT OVER AND OVER AGAIN IF YOU ARE IMPACTED AND BOOKMARK THE BENEFITS CONNECTION WEBSITE ON YOUR HOME PC. Make sure you have all of the necessary phone numbers to call. You may get a different answer to your questions each time you call, so call often until your are satisfied. From someone who has been riffed, I just want to say GOOD LUCK to all and remember there is life after Verizon. There are no longer any dead weights to RIF, so you are all qualified for life afterwards with other companies...........
14 replies (most recent on top)
Retirement eligible and affected by the 5/17 RIF. I don’t plan on using the Vz retiree medical/dental until the kids are off my insurance in a few years due to cost. A few take aways from the retiree off boarding call I attended in May:
You must purchase the dental coverage along with medical.
It’s expensive - around $2800/mo for yourself, spouse, children but is considered “Cadillac” coverage compared to most other employers and especially compared to what is available on the ACA exchanges.
You CANNOT have a lapse in coverage between the time you leave as a full time Vz employee and the time you sign up for retiree coverage. A lapse automatically makes you ineligible for retiree medical/dental.
QUESTION FOR OLD TIMERS AT VERIZON***does anyone know of the "early retirement rule" of 72??????? I heard that there was a rule of "early retirement" of age plus years worked that would give you some benefits of VZ if that number was 72. PLEASE let me know if anyone has heard about it.
I am a spouse of a Verizon retiree who has been deceased but serve the company for 38 years I have kept the medical coverage since it seems to be really good A little costly 2013 I became disabled and I still kept the the coverage I had Medicare and the Medicare package with Verizon now you have the Verizon PPO Advantage plan I'm not sure if it's really good for my situation I have an illness they've told me from day one to qualify for a certain benefits but do not have vision and dental was thinking of leaving them and looking for separate coverage while though they do cover the medication but dental and vision is quite it is quite costly another note cuz I was in the hospital I was paying $25 for a brand medication at the time it was Merck Medco when I came out of the hospital the same medication at least on six prescription was over $300 it seems to be an ongoing fight as I spoke to the resolution team and they spoke with Express Scripts here that's money due to me and it's another stress I'm dealing with thanks for listenin
Hi, question: I am company paid COBRA for 8 months which means I will still have another 10 mos of COBRA coverage left which I will need to pay myself. I also found out that since I became a retiree 8 mos ago, and I am on Medicare A+B, that if I take COBRA for the remainder of the period mandated by law, I will not be able to enroll in the retiree health plan. Does this make sense to anyone? I thought I could exchaust COBRA coverage and then sign for retiree health plan - apparently no.
Thank you for the info on COBRA being family plus one and other info. I will pass that on to my spouse. Hopefully we won't need it by then. There is a lot of reading with the benefits. He is keeping a Word document with pasted benefit info and his questions. So far they have answered the phone and been helpful. He dusted off his resume yesterday and has that ready to go now. There are online courses available. The push off of the cliff was horrible, but the cushion at the bottom is helpful. I'm speaking for older folks, this layoff is plain old awful for those with mortgage, car and college payments or a short severance period.
To MoonBaseAlpha .....(Feel like an astronaut)....Anonymous197205 here....Calculation WAS age + years of service = 58 years. As I stated above for Medical, Dental, Vision Insurance. RETIREE OR NOT, THE SAME COVERAGE (Medical, Dental & Vision) YOU HAD AS AN EMPLOYEE WILL be in force for the length of your severance period (unless they change the severance package.) at no cost to you other than deductibles / copays etc. Now speaking as a Verizon retiree and if you qualify as a retiree:::::When the severance period ends you will need to access the benefits connection website to update your choices on medical, dental, vision and life. You can select either COBRA or the Verizon Retire insurance package. If you do not do anything, then you will default to COBRA coverage. The cost was extremely high for both COBRA and the Verizon retiree insurance plan. And for retiree life insurance (voluntary life insurance I had as an employee & not 100% sure if it applies to retirees and non retirees), I can maintain what I had for the same price I was paying as an employee. Have to admit it's a great deal on life insurance and something that concerned me as I want my wife to be secured if something were to happen to me. Life insurance on the open market can be expensive. To echo my previous statements and Anonymous'197479 agreement: MAKE SURE THAT YOU CONTACT THE BENEFITS DEPARTMENT IF YOU ARE PART OF A RIF AND ASK QUESTION AFTER QUESTION CONCERNING WHAT YOUR BENEFITS ARE AS A RETIREE AND NON RETIREE. YOU WILL ALSO CONTINUE TO HAVE ACCESS TO THE BENEFITS CONNECTION WEBSITE (the website will always be available).....and keep GOOD RECORDS of all your phone calls to the benefits area including the day/time and the person you spoke to. Once again from someone who has been there........GOOD LUCK......
Anonymous197205, thanks for this post! For those of us that feel like this is coming our way, this is invaluable information. Do you remember what the calculation is to be considered "retired"? There is a calculation that includes years of service + age. At this point, my number is 74, and I thought I was hearing there were levels of "retirement" with a little difference in benefits, specifically healthcare ( a little change in cost ). Did I get that information wrong? I have heard from friends that have moved to other companies, our healthcare benefits are pretty great so I would like to keep them if possible. Not sure what other HC plans cost, but it might be worth keeping even if it is a little more than other plans. Thanks for your help!
Anonymous197205.....I agree with you (I was RIF'd in 2014)... Benefits connection contacts ARE NOT Verizon employees ....Please write down who, where, what, time, everytime you call. I made a mistake after severance ended and got sticker shock with COBRA. YOU are responsible to pay anything "supplemental". Family means You + 1, not whole family. Unemployment depends totally on what state you worked in and your severance period impacts when you can apply . Good Luck and keep records in order. I am current checking open market for Life Insurance. VZ Pension basic life is not enough.
to Anonymous197314 ...easy answer..NOPE. Unless you have been around a LONG LONG time with the company and get some type of retirement pension from VZ.
Do you get a monthly check as a Retiree ?
197294 thanks again! I hit my numbers a couple of years ago, but social security is more than a decade off to me, so I will need to work. But I don't want to give up any of the earned retiree benefits given my investment in years. This time around I got tapped, but that is OK with me. Time for a new chapter. Be well.
to Anonymous197279 ...Yes you can collect unemployment as long as you meet the other qualifications. Being classified a retiree as no impact on unemployment benefits. But check with your local unemployment office to verify.
Excellent post! As a 'retiree' during the RIF process, were you still able to collect unemployment? Thanks.