SMART Transportation Division members now have the chance to get up to five times the guaranteed coverage in the Union’s new VLTD plan.

Beginning March 1, 2023, Sun Life Financial will administer the VLTD Plan and provide the 24-hour coverage plan participants enjoy now, with up to $5,000 of guaranteed approved tax-free coverage.

In the coming days, members with the current Amalgamated plan will be receiving a detailed summary of benefits & rates, which will outline the new plan design and provide updates on premiums, to be effective March 1, 2023. If you have any questions, please direct them to the SMART VLTD customer service hotline at (224) 770-5328.

As information, disability claims filed prior to March 1, 2023, will continue to be handled and underwritten by Amalgamated. 

Sun Life VLTD Plan Highlights (Current Amalgamated enrollees)
• Guaranteed continuation of coverage at existing amount
• 12-month pre-existing condition clause is being transferred to Sun Life (time on Amalgamated plan will be honored).
• 2-year and 5-year benefit durations will be offered by Sun Life.
– Maximum Monthly Benefit ranges from $1,000 to $5,000.
• 24-hour coverage (members are covered for both on- and off-duty incidents)
• Stackable with other benefits (including RRB sickness benefits) for up to 80% of pre-disability earnings
• Benefits are not subject to repayment upon receipt of FELA and/or personal injury settlements.
• Benefits paid are tax-free.
• Benefits begin after 238 days (Rail) & 365 days (Bus), matching the duration of the SMART Voluntary Short Term Disability (VSTD) plan, so there is no gap in coverage for members who are enrolled in both plans.
• Premiums will increase as members age.
• Benefits are not portable (SMART-TD members-only benefit).
• Mental illness & substance use benefits are increased to 12 months (previously limited to 3 months for mental illness, and 15 days for substance use).

For members who are not currently enrolled, an Open Enrollment is planned in the coming months. Additional details will be announced once those dates are confirmed. 

Sun Life VLTD Plan Highlights (New enrollees)
• Sun Life will offer two open enrollments per year
– First open enrollment planned for spring 2023 and another in fall.
2-year benefit duration
– Guaranteed approved enrollment for up to $2,000 in monthly benefits
– Maximum monthly benefit of $2,000
5-year benefit duration
– Guaranteed approved enrollment for up to $5,000 in monthly benefits
– Maximum monthly benefit of $5,000
• 24-hour coverage (members are covered for both on- and off-duty incidents)
• Stackable with other benefits (including RRB sickness benefits) for up to 70% of pre-disability earnings
• Benefits are not subject to repayment upon receipt of FELA and/or personal injury settlements.
• Benefits paid are tax-free.
• Benefits begin after 238 days (Rail) & 365 days (Bus), matching the duration of the SMART Voluntary Short Term Disability (VSTD) plan, so there is no gap in coverage for members who are enrolled in both plans.
• Premiums will increase as members age.
• Benefits are not portable (SMART-TD members-only benefit).
• Mental illness & substance use benefits are increased to 12 months (previously limited to 3 months for mental illness, and 15 days for substance use).
Pre-existing conditions covered after 12 months of enrollment in the plan.

This announcement is available in PDF form.