When is my benefit final? - Hourly Video Transcript
Until we complete the review of your entire plan and all participants' benefits, we are paying you estimated benefits. It may take 3 years or more to complete our review. At that time, we will send you a benefit determination letter that will tell you the final amount of your monthly benefit. You will have 45 days to appeal the benefit determination if you disagree with the final amount.
If you simply have a question about how your benefit was calculated, call our Customer Contact Center at 1-800-400-7242 for an explanation, instead of filing an appeal.
Our benefit determination letter will also tell you if we paid you more or less than you were due during the period after your plan terminated and while we were paying you estimated benefits. If we paid you less, we will send you a single payment that includes interest to make up the difference. If we paid you more, we will collect the overpayment without charging you any interest.
If you received more than PBGC is allowed to pay you, we typically will reduce your monthly benefit by no more than 10%. The payment reduction will begin 45 days after the benefit determination letter. If you file an appeal, the reduction will not begin until there is a final decision. Once the total amount has been repaid, we will increase your benefit to the final amount stated in your benefit determination letter.
As we told you earlier, your benefit determination letter will officially tell you if you've received more or less than you're due. If you were paid more, future payments will be reduced, generally not more than 10%, to account for the overpayment. At PBGC, we call this 'recoupment.' Here's how it works in more detail.
PBGC is responsible for pension payments from the date of plan termination. In the case of Delphi, that date is July 31, 2009. When PBGC first takes over your plan, we continue to pay the amount that you were previously receiving. Quickly, PBGC works to apply the legal limits to your pension payment. With the application of these limits, your payment may be reduced. If that’s the case, we have to account for how much and how long you’ve been receiving an overpayment.
Let's say, for example, we overpay you $120.00 per month, for six months before we adjust your benefit to apply the legal limitations. The total amount of overpayment would be $720.00. Later, when we send your benefit determination letter, we will reduce your benefit to account for that over-payment. Generally, that reduction will not exceed 10% of your benefit per month. The reason we don’t make this reduction until you receive your benefit determination letter is to ensure that our calculations are correct, and that you’re receiving the full amount you are due under the law.