Q. What does it cost for the employer to participate in BCT?
A. The BCT SUB Plan does not charge a fee to become a participating employer and make contributions on behalf of your participating employees. However, because the BCT SUB Plan is what is called a "multiple employer plan" under ERISA, individual employers are required by federal law to file a Form 5500 annually. Please contact BCT Benefits, LLC for more information.
As with any program, there is a small amount of added work on your staff to get the BCT program set up. BCT Benefits, LLC will provide all the forms to get started. We will also work with your payroll department to answer any questions that may arise.
Q. Can the money be used for vacation or sick days?
A. No. The BCT Plan funds can be used when the employee is involuntarily laid off, experiences rain days, short interruptions in work or is otherwise unemployed. Please keep in mind that the employee may be eligible for benefits in any week that they work less than 36-hours. Any benefits paid for short weeks submitted by an employer that are not immediately following a full week of unemployment are subject to FICA. In addition, the hours worked and those for which benefits are drawn may not exceed 40 hours per week. Please request a Plan/SPD for full details.
Q. How does the BCT Plan pay for expenses?
A. All expenses of the BCT SUB Plan are paid out of Plan Assets and are subject to ERISA's fiduciary rules.
Q. How do the employees get their money?
A. The employee can request supplemental unemployment benefits for any week they work less than 36-hours, allowing them to draw as little as four (4) hours of benefits at a time. The employer signs into their online BCT Benefits, LLC account and completes a payout request form by 5pm on Tuesday, which confirms that work was not available for the employee. The form is submitted to BCT Benefits, LLC for approval. The benefit dollars will then be dispersed to the qualifying employee on Friday. For convenience, each employee is given two options to receive funds - direct deposit to his or her bank account or via a debit card.
Q. How much money can be built up in the BCT SUB Plan?
A. Contributions made on your behalf by your employer are held in the BCT SUB Trust. A notional account is created in your name. The amount of contributions credited to your notional account is capped at your hourly rate of pay x 40 hours x 36 weeks, less any applicable administrative fees. Currently the administrative fees are set at approximately 8% of contributions received on your behalf.
Q. Am I eligible to receive both state unemployment benefits and benefits from the BCT SUB Plan?
A. Yes, the benefit dollars in the BCT SUB Plan may be drawn in addition to state unemployment benefits.
Q. Are my benefits taxable?
A. Your benefits are also subject to federal, state and local income tax, as applicable. In some instances, short work week payments are subject to FICA. Your Employer will have more details. You also pay taxes on your benefits when they are paid to you.
Q. If I leave my employer, what happens to my designated benefit funds in the BCT account?
A. If you are not eligible to draw benefits, for example because you voluntarily quit, your designated funds in the account are kept in your name. If you subsequently become eligible for unemployment, you may draw benefits from the BCT account. Also, if you transfer or are hired by another participating employer, the BCT account transfers with you.
Q. Can I continue to draw funds from my BCT trust account if I am terminated?
A. If you are terminated from an employer who was contributing funds to a BCT account on your behalf, you still may be able to draw funds. Please click here to answer some questions to help determine if you are eligible.