By David Brandolph
Last March 11 was a joyous day for the Pension Rights Center, multiemployer defined benefit plan members, plan retirees and their families. Thanks to a joint (and painstaking) seven-year effort to inform and convince Congress of the need to address the systemic threat posed by a pension plan insolvency calamity, President Joseph R. Biden signed into law the Butch Lewis Emergency Pension Plan Relief Act.
The law authorizes the U.S. Treasury Department to provide as many as 250 financially struggling multiemployer plans (covering up to three million plan members) with a one-time grant large enough to enable eligible plans to continue paying promised benefits through 2051. Under the grant, additional money is provided for eligible plans to cancel previous benefit cuts. The new law should also improve the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation’s (PBGC) ability to continue to pay guaranteed benefits for insolvent plans.
With the PBGC now beginning to process and approve plan applications for funds and finalizing regulatory guidance under the law, the Pension Rights Center has published “Common Questions About the Butch Lewis Act” to provide up-to-date information about the law and its implementation.
In the fact sheet, PRC sheds light on some of the most pressing concerns of plan retirees and their families, such as: What happens if an eligible plan decides not to apply for funds under the law? Many other common questions are answered.
If the fact sheet doesn’t answer your questions, send them to us and we will get back to you.