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Joint Council No. 40
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About Us

The Western Pennsylvania Teamsters and Employers Welfare Fund was established on June 12, 1950. As such, it was one of the first collectively bargained multi-employer benefit plans in the nation. In the period following WWII, prior to the establishment of the Welfare Fund, limited benefits were provided through purchase of standard insurance policies by employer associations for their various member companies. Benefits included only life, accident and dismemberment insurance. With the establishment of the Welfare Fund in 1950, all welfare matters came under the direct control of a Board of trustees composed of an equal number of employer and union trustees. In 1957, the Trust Agreement was further amended to expand coverage and include medical and hospitalization benefits.

Over time, states and the federal government began to regulate health insurance products and multi-employer welfare funds. Since 2000, the Welfare Fund restructured many of the benefits in its plans on a self-insured basis, thus minimizing state law regulation and streamlining costs by the assumption of its own risks. Today, benefits are generally governed solely by federal laws, such as the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (“ERISA”). Amendment to ERISA and other federal laws continue to shape the benefits provided. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (the “ACA”) imposes substantial, costly obligations on the health insurance market, but since the Welfare Fund is a collectively bargained, self-insured, self-administered plan, the ACA’s impact on Welfare Fund costs are less burdensome. As a result, it is anticipated that the Welfare Fund will be able to offer the most competitively priced and most comprehensive benefit packages available.

By self-insuring medical benefits, the Fund assumes the insurance risk of its own population of covered employees and beneficiaries and is therefore not required to compensate an insurance carrier for assuming risks of the general public. Compared to the wide-open risk pools of ACA Marketplace Plans, the Welfare Fund’s coverage of an employment based risk pool will allow it to experience more manageable costs. Through contractual arrangements, the Welfare Fund is able to provide you with access to both network and out-of-network doctors, hospitals and other health providers. It is the goal of the Trustees to constantly monitor health care options to provide the highest quality and lowest costs.

The Trustees of the Welfare Fund are very actively involved in the direct control of related welfare programs and maintain final say on resolving disputed benefit claims. The jointly sponsored labor-management board enables the Welfare Fund to utilize various new funding and insurance options providing for cost efficiencies and expanded benefits. Such efforts have been further enhanced by the historic unbiased dialogue by both union and employer trustees relative to problems and issues of the Fund.

Today, the Fund operates from its administrative office in Pittsburgh, PA, serving several thousand participants and their beneficiaries. It currently offers a wide range of package and matrix plans including medical, surgical, hospital, dental, vision, sickness and accident, prescription drug, death benefits and an early retirement cash subsidy. It has implemented many innovative programs including:

  • Self-insured specific benefits
  • Trustee designed benefit features
    • Deductibles
    • Co-pays
    • Co-insurance
    • Out of pocket maximums
  • Professionally managed investment of cash reserves
  • Avalability of benefit menus under Matrix plans.

As a result of such cooperative initiatives, coupled with the saving realized from self-insurance, the Fund is able to pass on the savings by reducing these cost reduction measures through lower premiums, or alternatively enabling groups to include certain additional benefits, lower deductibles, co-pays and co-insurance than those available from private insurance companies and ACA Marketplace Plans.

Our goal in publishing information on the website is to provide you with important information in a timely and immediate format now possible via the internet. Links to printable forms and governing documents can also be found within these pages. Traditional publications, such as the Summary Plan Descriptions, medical benefit grids, booklets and required notices are still distributed and may be requested along with any other information that you may require by contacting:

William L. Parry, Jr., Director
Western PA Teamsters and Employers Welfare Fund
50 Abele Road, Suite 1005
Bridgeville, PA 15017
412-363-2700 (phone)
800-242-0410 (phone – toll free)
412-363-0580 (fax)

You can also reach us by e-mail at contactus@wpawelfarefund.com.

We will continue to enhance the website and promptly publish news and links to websites of related interest and features, such as responses to frequently asked questions. So check back often and if you have any comments or suggestions, please let us hear from you.

BOARD OF TRUSTEES of the WESTERN PENNSYLVANIA TEAMSTERS AND EMPLOYERS WELFARE FUND

 
 
 
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