If you are Vested and you become Totally and Permanently Disabled, you are eligible to receive your pension benefit regardless of your age. You are considered Totally and Permanently Disabled if you are unable to work in covered employment as a result of an unavoidable injury or illness while working in covered employment or within six months of leaving covered employment. If you were unemployed during all or part of this six-month period and such period occurred between October 1, 2008 and December 31, 2010, the period of unemployment will be disregarded if: (1) your last employment before becoming Totally and Permanently Disabled was in covered employment; (2) you were available for work in covered employment throughout the period of your unemployment; and (3) you were actively seeking work in covered employment throughout the period of your unemployment.
The monthly amount of your Disability Pension will be the same as the Normal Pension based on the Benefit Units earned to the date of disability. There is no reduction for age, as in an Early Retirement Pension. You will not receive Disability Pension payments during the first five months of disability.
The Disability Pension will continue for life, provided you remain Totally and Permanently Disabled. If at any time you cease to be Totally and Permanently Disabled, your pension will be discontinued and you may re-enter active employment and earn additional benefits.
The Trustees make the determination of your Total and Permanent Disability. In making this determination, the Trustees may:
- rely on a Social Security Disability Award;
- require you to submit medical reports; and/or
- require you to undergo a physical exam by a physician of the Trustees’ choosing.
In order for a claim for Disability Benefits to be processed, Plan Participants and Beneficiaries and their Personal Representatives may be required to provide and disclose health information and documentation from any source to the Plan upon request by the administrator of the Pension Plan. The Participant or Beneficiary or representative of the Participant or Beneficiary and their Representatives may be required to sign a medical authorization provided by the Plan permitting the Plan to receive, obtain and review health information and documentation from any source, including the health information and documentation designated as Protected Health Information pursuant to the Privacy Rules of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996. If a Participant or Beneficiary fails to disclose health information or refuses to sign an authorization as provided by the Plan, the Plan may deny the claim for Disability Pension.
You will not be eligible for a Disability Pension if your disability results from self-inflicted injury, the use of alcohol or drugs, an injury suffered while engaging in criminal activity or active service in the Armed Forces of the United States or any State militia. In addition, you will not be entitled to a Disability Pension under this Plan if you are receiving a military disability pension. However, if the military disability pension is less than the Disability Pension otherwise payable under this Plan, then you would be entitled to receive the difference between the two benefits from this Plan.