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PBGC Pension Recipient Age Up From 64 to 65 – Spouse Under Age 65
2 Person Contract
PBGC pension recipient turns 65 in May (their BCBSM medical ends April 30th).
Mail letter to the IRS on April 10th stating that PBGC pension recipient will be eligible for Medicare May 1st. Include PIN and SS# in this letter. This will key them to cancel the PBGC pension recipient in their system. In the same envelope include Form 13441-A for their Qualified Family Member (QFM). A sample form (Sample) is at the DSRA-BT website. Be very careful that you have the correct premium, both total and 27.5%, for the correct individual HCTC plan.
BCBSM will establish a new contract for spouse only of same metal tier but in a non-HCTC division 60 days before the retiree turns 65. The spouse may see an invoice from BCBSM for the full amount of the premium in the month prior to the PBGC pension recipient turning 65. DO NOT pay this unless there is a delay in getting a new PIN number from the IRS and you are not able to make the May 10th payment cut-off. Note: The person turning 65 will be automatically enrolled in their own dental & vision by BCBSM. If you do not want this coverage, call BCBSM to cancel.
Once the spouse receives their enrolled letter from the IRS, fill out a new BCBSM enrollment form (DSRABT17) and check the HCTC box at the top. Include your new PIN number on the enrollment form and a copy of your letter from the IRS. To speed this process it is recommended that you email or fax this information.
Print out the IRS payment coupon (Form 13973) and make new payment to US Treasury - HCTC by May 10th.
If payment cannot be made by the 10th of the month, full payment must be made to BCBSM. BCBSM in this instance must indicate in their records that the retiree made the payment. In this situation, the IRS has introduced a new procedure that allows the HCTC AMP enrollee to request an immediate refund of the 72.5% HCTC credit. The retiree files form 14095 with the IRS for HCTC refund for the month of May. (Up to 12 week turnaround time.) Form available at the IRS website or the DSRA-BT website.
Spouse of PBGC Recipient, Age Up from 64 to 65 – PBGC Pension Recipient is Under 65
2 Person Contract
Spouse of PBGC pension recipient turns 65 in May (their BCBSM medical ends April 30th).
PBGC pension recipient will mail a new 13441-A form to the IRS on April 10th. Check box 6 on page 1, drop your spouse and fill in the single premium, both total and 27.5%. Write a short note by box 6 stating, “I am removing my spouse from the policy because they will be eligible for Medicare as of May 1st.”
BCBSM will establish a new contract for PBGC pension recipient only of same metal tier but in a non-HCTC division 60 days before the spouse turns 65. The PBGC pension recipient may see an invoice from BCBSM for the full amount of the premium in the month prior to the spouse turning 65. DO NOT pay this unless there is a delay in the IRS processing and you are not able to make the May 10th payment cut-off.
PBGC pension recipient should call the IRS around April 27th and confirm they have received their change and processed it (assuming IRS has not issued Welcome letter yet). Fill out new BCBSM enrollment form (DSRABT17) and check the HCTC box at the top. Include your PIN number on the enrollment form.
Print out IRS payment coupon (Form 13973), fill out with new amount, and send to US Treasury - HCTC by May 10th. Your PIN number will not change.
PBGC Pension Recipient Age Up From 66 to 67
Spouse (under age 65) is in HCTC AMP program as a QFM.
PBGC pension recipient turns 67 in May. Spouse’s eligibility for the HCTC expires May 1st. Mail a letter to the IRS, approximately April 10th, stating that PBGC pension recipient is turning 67 in May and they need to cancel QFM HCTC AMP coverage effective May 1st. This should go to the address on the 13441-A form. Remember, if you’re caught using the HCTC beyond your eligibility date, you could face severe monetary penalties.
If the salaried retiree started drawing their PBGC pension before April 2, 2009 and the spouse is still under 65, the spouse is eligible for the DSRA-BT Qualified Family Member (QFM) subsidy. To request the subsidy for May, you must fill out a new BCBSM enrollment form (DSRABT17) and submit to BCBSM in early April. Eligibility for this subsidy is for 24 months which for most households are the months the retiree is age 67 and 68.
Even if the spouse does not qualify for the DSRA-BT QFM subsidy, they will have to notify BCBSM that they are no longer in the HCTC AMP program. Again, submit a new enrollment form and check “Change of Status” box in Section 1 and write that HCTC eligibility has expired effective May 1st due to PBGC pension recipient aging up to 67.
QFM in HCTC AMP program Age Up to 65
QFM in HCTC AMP turns 65 in May. Their eligibility for the HCTC AMP expires May 1st. Mail a letter to the IRS address on the 13441-A form, approximately April 10th, stating that they are eligible for Medicare May 1st and they should remove them from the program.
BCBSM will automatically cancel the QFM’s coverage effective May 1st.
BCBSM has told us that they will not send out a letter this year stating your plan is considered qualified for the HCTC. They have however sent out forms 1099-H and 1095-B. The IRS has informed us not to instruct HCTC enrollees to include a copy of the 1095-B as “proof” of coverage when you file your tax return. The reason being it is an affordable care act document and inclusion might imply you are not eligible for the HCTC.
If you are in the AMP in 2017, BCBSM has turned off your access to your previous payment history at their website. For those of you who were in the HCTC AMP for part of 2016 we recommend that you include a copy of the following documents with your tax return:
Remember, you can only claim the months you paid the full premium. Do not include months that you were in the AMP.
For those not in the AMP, you have access to your payment history at the BCBSM website and can use that as proof of payment rather than bank records if you prefer.
If you do not have bank records or access to your previous payment history on the BCBSM website, we suggest that you call BCBSM customer service at 1-877-354-2583 and request a copy of your proof of payment be mailed (or emailed) to you for the months you need.
DSRA-BT Board of Directors
The IRS will now accept your check or money order due no later than February 10, 2017 for your insurance premium payment for the month of February. Please remember, premium payments received before the 22nd of the month prior to the premium payment will be returned to the sender.
If your 27.5% premium payment is not received by the IRS between the 24th of the current month and the 10th of the month your premium is due, you will have to pay 100% of that months premium directly to Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and you will have to request an IRS refund of the 72.5% on your federal tax return the following year. We strongly encourage you to send your payment along with the completed voucher during the specified window in order to avoid paying 100% of the month’s premium.
The IRS will not accept your check or money order before the 22nd of the current month for next month’s HCTC premium payment. Premium payments received before the 22nd of the current month will be treated as current month payments and will be returned to the sender. (A payment for February, received before January 22, will be treated as a duplicate payment for January) If your 27.5% premium payment is not received by the IRS between the 22nd of the current month and the 10th of the month your premium is due, you will have to pay 100% of that months premium directly to Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and you will have to request an IRS refund of the 72.5% on your federal tax return the following year. We strongly encourage you to send your payment along with the completed voucher during the specified window in order to avoid paying 100% of the month’s premium.
As we have noted in our prior communications to you, there is a NEW Advance Monthly Payment (AMP) process that has been put in place by the IRS/HCTC effective January 01, 2017. The process will require you to send in a voucher, your IRS assigned Participant Identification Number (PIN) and your payment each month to the IRS. The IRS will verify eligibility each month and then will collect the 27.5% premium payment from the plan participant (you), matching it with the 72.5% premium subsidy from the IRS/HCTC program, and make payment to BCBS of Michigan for the insurance program selected by you. This means that BCBSM, the pre-65 plan administrator, will no longer be managing the payment and billing process for you.
By now, most of you have received your “Welcome” letter from the IRS HCTC/AMP Program. That letter will include your Participant Identification Number (PIN) on the top of the letter. You must mail one of the HCTC AMP Payment vouchers including your PIN, each month to the IRS/HCTC address located on the voucher, along with your Check, Money Order or Certified Check (the only forms of payment acceptable by the IRS/HCTC) to make your payments for each month you remain eligible to participate the HCTC AMP monthly program in 2017.
If you are Newly Enrolling in the AMP
If you are enrolling in the AMP and have confirmation via phone from the IRS that you are enrolled and have your Personal Identification Number (PIN), you DO NOT have to wait for your IRS enrolled letter before you can send in the second BCBSM enrollment form. This has been approved by BCBSM. However, you will need to supply BCBSM with your PIN number and the total premium dollar amount that you have been approved for by the IRS along with your enrollment form selecting HCTC coverage.
If you are already enrolled in the AMP
It came to light this past weekend that a few of the existing AMP participants thought they needed to wait for the IRS enrolled letter before they could submit a BCBSM enrollment form to upgrade/change their plan. This is NOT the case. Those who are current participants in the AMP DO NOT have to send anything from the IRS to BCBSM. Therefore, if you are an existing AMP participant, wish to upgrade and have not previously applied, please send your BCBSM enrollment form directly to BCBSM as soon as possible.
Additional Important Information
A few people have received their enrolled letters from the IRS. We wanted to alert you that the contact phone number at the top of this letter is incorrect. The actual phone number is what we published last week, 1-844-853-7210. The IRS has been alerted to this fact.
We have heard from several people that customer service at the IRS is telling them that if they don’t have their PIN they can still mail in their payment. This is NOT true. Please wait until you get your enrolled letter with your PIN to mail your payment. Our contact at the IRS informed us that they mailed 500 letters today. Many, many of these were to DSRA-BT people. As we stated last week, your payment must be in the IRS bank’s hands by January 10th for January coverage.
The IRS should include their fax number in your letter if you need to submit some additional information. It appears that a few of our members used the sample form with the yellow highlights and red Xs. You will most likely get a rejection letter from the IRS. Please make sure you complete a blank Form 13441-A and use the sample as only a guideline for your resubmission. Make sure you fill in the total monthly premium amount in Part 4. We would suggest that you fax your corrected form to the IRS HCTC at 1-855-250-1731 rather than snail-mail it to speed up the turn around.
Please note, several people have incorrectly contacted the DSRA with questions. They are a totally separate organization from the DSRA-BT. The DSRA is focused on restoration of your pensions. The DSRA-BT handles healthcare and life insurance. To ensure timely responses to your questions about healthcare, life insurance or the HCTC please make sure you contact us at https://www.dsrabenefittrust.net