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Kim Coats Tuck - Retirement Specialist

Retirement Hotlines

2.26.24 – APFA Virtual Financial Planning Seminar- Thursday, March 7, 2024

Financial Planning Seminar on Thursday, March 7, from 11:00am – 1:00pm (CT). Are you ready to take charge of your financial journey? Are you just starting your career? Or are you a financial late bloomer?

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2.15.24 – Reminder: 2/15/24 APFA Virtual Retirement Seminar Begins Soon!

APFA’s Virtual Retirement Seminar will be held today, from 11am to 1pm CT. Topics will include: 401(k), 65-Point Plan, COBRA, Medicare, Pensions, Retiree Travel, Social Security, Vacation/Sick Payout

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2.14.24 – Reminder: APFA Virtual Retirement Seminar – Thursday, February 15th

Please join us tomorrow, Thursday, February 15, from 11 am until 1 pm (CT) for our second virtual retirement seminar of 2024. Topics will include: 401(k), 65-Point Plan, COBRA, Medicare, Pensions, Retiree Travel, Social Security, Vacation/Sick Payout

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2.08.24 – APFA Virtual Retirement Seminar – Thursday, February 15th

Please join us on Thursday, February 15, from 11 am until 1 pm (CT) for our second virtual retirement seminar of 2024. We will send instructions on how to join the seminar in a hotline next week.

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1.18.24 – APFA Virtual Retirement Seminar Begins Soon!

Please join us for our virtual retirement town hall today from 1100 – 1300 (CT). Topics will include: 401(k), 65-Point Plan, COBRA, Medicare, Pensions, Retiree Travel, Social Security, Vacation/Sick Payout

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1.16.24 – Reminder: APFA Virtual Retirement Seminar – Thursday, January 18th

Join us for our virtual retirement seminar on Thursday, January 18 from 1100 – 1300 (CT). Click here to submit your questions in advance. Topics: 401(k), 65-Point Plan, COBRA, Medicare, Pensions, Retiree Travel, Social Security, Vacation/Sick Payout

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12.14.23 – APFA Virtual Retirement Seminar – Thursday, January 18th

Please join us for our first virtual retirement seminar of 2024 on Thursday, January 18 from 1100 – 1300 (CT). Topics will include: 401(k), 65-Point Plan, COBRA, Medicare Pensions, Retiree Travel, Social Security, Vacation/Sick Payout

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11.09.23 – Nov 9th Virtual Retirement Seminar Begins Soon!

APFA Virtual Retirement Town Hall Begins Soon! Thursday, November 9th, 2023, from 1100-1300CT. Topics will include: 401(k), 65-Point Plan, COBRA, Medicare, Pensions, Retiree Travel, Social Security, Vacation/Sick Payout

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2.26.24 – APFA Virtual Financial Planning Seminar- Thursday, March 7, 2024

Financial Planning Seminar on Thursday, March 7, from 11:00am – 1:00pm (CT). Are you ready to take charge of your financial journey? Are you just starting your career? Or are you a financial late bloomer?

Continue Reading

2.15.24 – Reminder: 2/15/24 APFA Virtual Retirement Seminar Begins Soon!

APFA’s Virtual Retirement Seminar will be held today, from 11am to 1pm CT. Topics will include: 401(k), 65-Point Plan, COBRA, Medicare, Pensions, Retiree Travel, Social Security, Vacation/Sick Payout

Continue Reading

2.14.24 – Reminder: APFA Virtual Retirement Seminar – Thursday, February 15th

Please join us tomorrow, Thursday, February 15, from 11 am until 1 pm (CT) for our second virtual retirement seminar of 2024. Topics will include: 401(k), 65-Point Plan, COBRA, Medicare, Pensions, Retiree Travel, Social Security, Vacation/Sick Payout

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Start Early!

Get Started on Saving

Learn about the importance of starting to save for retirement as early as possible as well as how much to save, what funds to invest in, and taking advantage of your employer match.

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Retirement Seminars

Upcoming Seminars

2.26.24 – APFA Virtual Financial Planning Seminar- Thursday, March 7, 2024

Financial Planning Seminar on Thursday, March 7, from 11:00am – 1:00pm (CT). Are you ready to take charge of your financial journey? Are you just starting your career? Or are you a financial late bloomer?

Continue Reading

2.15.24 – Reminder: 2/15/24 APFA Virtual Retirement Seminar Begins Soon!

APFA’s Virtual Retirement Seminar will be held today, from 11am to 1pm CT. Topics will include: 401(k), 65-Point Plan, COBRA, Medicare, Pensions, Retiree Travel, Social Security, Vacation/Sick Payout

Continue Reading

Past Seminars

Retirement Planning

Contact and Resources

Download a list of helpful contact and resources for Social Security, Medicare, AA Human Resources, Benefits Service Center, Medical Insurance, Prescription Drugs, Optional Insurance, MetLife, Long-Term Care, Pension Benefits, and Miscellaneous.

Eligibility: 65 Point Plan

Being eligible to retire and being eligible for a pension/social-security are different thresholds.

For retirement eligibility, American Airlines uses standard and simplified criteria based on a 65 Point Plan. Simply put, you must have at least 10 years of company service and your age plus years of company service must equal 65 or more when you leave. Eligibility can be confirmed by calling Retiree Services at (844) 543-5747 or reaching out to your FSM.

Not Yet Eligible to Retire?

Stall

One of the major advantages to being an APFA Flight Attendant is the flexibility. You can go many months/years with little or no flying. If you are close, but not quite yet eligible to retire, you can “stall” your departure date, by dropping trips (down to 40 hours,) VLOA, and various personal leaves. If you are sick, and you can provide medical substantiation for your illness, you can stay on the sick list for as long as you have sick time, plus five years (60 months) of unpaid sick. Many people getting ready for retirement, get all their necessary medical treatments done prior to retirement and losing their active employee health insurance. For many people, these delays allow enough time to become eligible to retire.

Quitting

You are free to just walk away from American Airlines at any time. You simply give notice to your Flight Service Manager. Sick time is lost. Your unused vacation is paid out at the same formula as a retiree (see previous section.) Based on your eligibility and vesting, you may be able to commence your pension (if applicable) at some point in the future. You are eligible to continue active insurance thru COBRA (see page 24).

Retiree Checklist

  • Review the AA Retirement Planning Guide on jetnet. jetnet > Team Member Services > Leaving American > Retirement Planning. Much of the information in this packet is also available online in that section.

  • Apply for your pension if you plan to collect immediately after leaving the company. LUS flight attendants should contact the PBGC at (800) 400-7242. LAA Flight Attendants can apply online by visiting the Pension Service Center in jetnet or calling (800)447-2000 (selection option 1, 3, 4). Applying for your pension should be done a minimum of 45 days before retirement if you plan to take your pension immediately after leaving the company. Notifying your FSM of your retirement does NOT start your pension.

  • Research medical insurance coverage choices available for purchase after you exit the company i.e. COBRA, AA retiree medical, coverage under spouse if they are an AA employee, other insurance available from your spouse’s medical coverage, Medicare, state insurance programs. You will be solicited for COBRA coverage by Alight. If you plan to take COBRA benefits when you leave, you will keep the same coverage you had as an active employee.

  • If you or your spouse are going into Medicare at retirement and either of you is over 65, complete the Medicare Request for Information form and mail/fax to Alight to verify proof of coverage so you won’t be charged a late enrollment fee.

  • Consult with financial advisers concerning available pension and 401k options.

  • 30 days before your exit date, contact your supervisor and let them know you will be leaving and give them your exact exit date. They will also want you to email them this information including your retirement date and last day as an active employee.

  • Pull copies of sequence histories if you will need this information when you file your taxes. This info will not be available once your access to the Flight Service website ends.

  • Pull up any contact information, forms or information on jetnet that you might need in the future.

  • If you have coverage such as life insurance, Hyatt Legal, Long Term Care etc. that you wish to continue after you leave the company, contact those companies and make those arrangements. They will not send you the paperwork until after you have left the company, but it must be accomplished within the first 30 days after you leave.

  • LAA flight attendants not starting their pension right away should pull up a pension estimate on jetnet. Refer to the Pension section on page 16. LUS flight attendants should contact the PBGC, see page 13.

  • Contact HR to schedule an optional retirement counseling session.

  • It is always a good idea to verify with your FSM that they have submitted the Payroll Transfer Record (PTR) to the Flight Attendant Service Center in order to change your status from active to retiree as of your chosen retirement date. (RT code in your HI10).

  • Consider offering leftover uniform items to active Flight Attendants who may be able to use them.

  • Attend to any medical, dental, or vision needs while still on active insurance.

  • Your 401k funds cannot be moved or adjusted during the first 30 days after exit. Make any adjustments in investment choices prior to your exit date, or if you plan to roll over into an IRA, either do it before exiting or wait until 30 days after leaving the company. Talk to Fidelity about arrangements to repay any outstanding loans from your 401k Plan.

  • (LAA) If you have collected Long Term Disability payments before January 1, 2004, you may be eligible for an additional check. You will need to contact Met Life at (888) 533-6287 to check on eligibility. You will need to advise them of your pension commencement date and ask them about receiving the LTD supplemental benefit check to your defined pension benefit.

  • Contact your supervisor to request the retirement gift catalog.

  • Make arrangements with your flight service manager to return your keys, ID badge, and Flight Attendant Tablet. Ask about returning any airport access ID’s as well. If you cannot make it to base, ask your FSM for a FedEx envelope or shipping label to return all of these items.

  • Contact the AA credit union about new repayment arrangements for loans as they will no longer be payroll deducted.

  • If your spouse works for American Airlines and you wish to be covered under their plan, they will need to add you by processing a “life event” on the benefits center in jetnet. This cannot be done until you leave but needs to be done within 30 days after the event occurs.

  • Coverage from your spouse who works for another company will need to be filed as a life event. Remember that your retirement is their life event. Check for that company’s policies and deadlines.

  • After a few days for the conversion, verify you have access to the AA retirees site (http://retirees.aa.com) logging in with your AA ID and your most recent jetnet passcode. Like jetnet, the passcode must be changed every 90 days. Verify your travel has transitioned from active to retiree travel. Contact Team Member Services at 800-447-2000 if you need assistance with accessing retirees.aa.com or have issues with your travel.

  • If you are planning on keeping any of your active coverage available under COBRA, (medical, dental, vision) you must sign up within 60 days of your exit date. Contact Alight (888-860-6178) if you have not been solicited for COBRA coverage in the first 45 days after your exit. COBRA solicitations will be available online thru the Benefits Service Center link on the AA retirees site within the first few days after your retirement is processed and you can sign up online or over the phone for faster processing.

  • If you would like a retiree ID, and have not already submitted your request, you can request it on retirees.aa.com, or at https://c03.keysurvey.com/f/112668/24a3/

  • Make sure both American Airlines and the APFA have your correct address, phone number and email. Keep this updated at all times.

  • If you have any optional insurance coverage you wish to keep after your exit, i.e. Long Term Care, Hyatt Legal, Life Insurance, Accident Insurance, Homeowners and Auto Insurance, you must contact the specific provider to establish a new payment plan before their deadline.

  • Make sure to file any outstanding active medical, dental, or vision claims as well as receipts to flex spending before deadlines expire for reimbursement.

  • Keep your contact information updated

  • Don’t forget to pay your medical insurance premiums (COBRA or Retiree Medical).

  • If you are purchasing Retiree Medical, coverage may change each year, so don’t forget to check each fall during benefits enrollment.

  • The 401k freeze ends and you can begin withdrawals, make changes to your portfolio, or roll your balance into an IRA.

  • Review the AA Retirement Planning Guide on jetnet. jetnet > Team Member Services > Leaving American > Retirement Planning. Much of the information in this packet is also available online in that section.

  • Apply for your pension if you plan to collect immediately after leaving the company. LUS flight attendants should contact the PBGC at (800) 400-7242. LAA Flight Attendants can apply online by visiting the Pension Service Center in jetnet or calling (800)447-2000 (selection option 1, 3, 4). Applying for your pension should be done a minimum of 45 days before retirement if you plan to take your pension immediately after leaving the company. Notifying your FSM of your retirement does NOT start your pension.

  • Research medical insurance coverage choices available for purchase after you exit the company i.e. COBRA, AA retiree medical, coverage under spouse if they are an AA employee, other insurance available from your spouse’s medical coverage, Medicare, state insurance programs. You will be solicited for COBRA coverage by Alight. If you plan to take COBRA benefits when you leave, you will keep the same coverage you had as an active employee.

  • If you or your spouse are going into Medicare at retirement and either of you is over 65, complete the Medicare Request for Information form and mail/fax to Alight to verify proof of coverage so you won’t be charged a late enrollment fee.

  • Consult with financial advisers concerning available pension and 401k options.

  • 30 days before your exit date, contact your supervisor and let them know you will be leaving and give them your exact exit date. They will also want you to email them this information including your retirement date and last day as an active employee.

  • Pull copies of sequence histories if you will need this information when you file your taxes. This info will not be available once your access to the Flight Service website ends.

  • Pull up any contact information, forms or information on jetnet that you might need in the future.

  • If you have coverage such as life insurance, Hyatt Legal, Long Term Care etc. that you wish to continue after you leave the company, contact those companies and make those arrangements. They will not send you the paperwork until after you have left the company, but it must be accomplished within the first 30 days after you leave.

  • LAA flight attendants not starting their pension right away should pull up a pension estimate on jetnet. Refer to the Pension section on page 16. LUS flight attendants should contact the PBGC, see page 13.

  • Contact HR to schedule an optional retirement counseling session.

  • It is always a good idea to verify with your FSM that they have submitted the Payroll Transfer Record (PTR) to the Flight Attendant Service Center in order to change your status from active to retiree as of your chosen retirement date. (RT code in your HI10).

  • Consider offering leftover uniform items to active Flight Attendants who may be able to use them.

  • Attend to any medical, dental, or vision needs while still on active insurance.

  • Your 401k funds cannot be moved or adjusted during the first 30 days after exit. Make any adjustments in investment choices prior to your exit date, or if you plan to roll over into an IRA, either do it before exiting or wait until 30 days after leaving the company. Talk to Fidelity about arrangements to repay any outstanding loans from your 401k Plan.

  • (LAA) If you have collected Long Term Disability payments before January 1, 2004, you may be eligible for an additional check. You will need to contact Met Life at (888) 533-6287 to check on eligibility. You will need to advise them of your pension commencement date and ask them about receiving the LTD supplemental benefit check to your defined pension benefit.

  • Contact your supervisor to request the retirement gift catalog.

  • Make arrangements with your flight service manager to return your keys, ID badge, and Flight Attendant Tablet. Ask about returning any airport access ID’s as well. If you cannot make it to base, ask your FSM for a FedEx envelope or shipping label to return all of these items.

  • Contact the AA credit union about new repayment arrangements for loans as they will no longer be payroll deducted.

  • If your spouse works for American Airlines and you wish to be covered under their plan, they will need to add you by processing a “life event” on the benefits center in jetnet. This cannot be done until you leave but needs to be done within 30 days after the event occurs.

  • Coverage from your spouse who works for another company will need to be filed as a life event. Remember that your retirement is their life event. Check for that company’s policies and deadlines.

  • After a few days for the conversion, verify you have access to the AA retirees site (http://retirees.aa.com) logging in with your AA ID and your most recent jetnet passcode. Like jetnet, the passcode must be changed every 90 days. Verify your travel has transitioned from active to retiree travel. Contact Team Member Services at 800-447-2000 if you need assistance with accessing retirees.aa.com or have issues with your travel.

  • If you are planning on keeping any of your active coverage available under COBRA, (medical, dental, vision) you must sign up within 60 days of your exit date. Contact Alight (888-860-6178) if you have not been solicited for COBRA coverage in the first 45 days after your exit. COBRA solicitations will be available online thru the Benefits Service Center link on the AA retirees site within the first few days after your retirement is processed and you can sign up online or over the phone for faster processing.

  • If you would like a retiree ID, and have not already submitted your request, you can request it on retirees.aa.com, or at https://c03.keysurvey.com/f/112668/24a3/

  • Make sure both American Airlines and the APFA have your correct address, phone number and email. Keep this updated at all times.

  • If you have any optional insurance coverage you wish to keep after your exit, i.e. Long Term Care, Hyatt Legal, Life Insurance, Accident Insurance, Homeowners and Auto Insurance, you must contact the specific provider to establish a new payment plan before their deadline.

  • Make sure to file any outstanding active medical, dental, or vision claims as well as receipts to flex spending before deadlines expire for reimbursement.

  • Keep your contact information updated

  • Don’t forget to pay your medical insurance premiums (COBRA or Retiree Medical).

  • If you are purchasing Retiree Medical, coverage may change each year, so don’t forget to check each fall during benefits enrollment.

  • The 401k freeze ends and you can begin withdrawals, make changes to your portfolio, or roll your balance into an IRA.

Vacation & Sick Time

American will pay you $8.65 for each hour of sick time left in your bank in the form of a cash payout.

Flight attendants retiring with seven or more days of vacation will receive 4.00 hours of flight pay for each day. The payout for less than seven days is 3.50 hours per day. Flight attendants have the option of participating in the vacation buy-back program each year. The payout for vacation buy back mirrors the formula used for vacations during a bid month.

Retirement Gift

Retirees are eligible to select a gift from the retirement catalog. You can also choose to donate to the WINGS Foundation in lieu of a gift. Catalogs are special ordered by your Flight Service Manager and sent to you approximately 30 days after you retire. Contact your FSM during your last 30 days and remind them to request the catalog.

Retiree Status

Upon retirement, you can request a Retiree ID from the company by completing an online form and uploading a picture. There is also a link on AA Retiree website. Airline retirees are still afforded many of the discounts they enjoyed as active employees at various hotel and rental car chains as well as shipping discounts with FedEx. The Retiree ID is not intended to replace a government issued photo ID when traveling or passing thru TSA security screening.

The loss of your Crew Member ID will also mean the loss of “crew line” expedited service thru TSA Security checkpoints and Customs and Border Patrol. The TSA Pre-Check Program and Global Entry are two programs administered by the Federal Government that allow you, for a fee, expedited passage thru these checkpoints. Non-revs are frequently designated with “Pre-Check” on their boarding passes. Enrolling in the Pre-Check program will get that designation most of the time.

Retirees have access to the AA Retirees site and (888) WE-FLYAA for checking loads and listing for flights. On the AA Retirees site, you can also update contact information, complete annual enrollment for Retiree Medical Plans and COBRA, and update non-rev traveler information.

Access to the combined Payroll system that went into effect on 10/15/2020, Epays, or Paperless Pay (for older pay data) continues thru links on the AA Retiree website.

Retiree Travel

Retiree Travel Program Benefits

The Retiree Travel Program includes the following benefits:

  • Six (6) one-way D1 passes per year for the retiree and each eligible traveler (Spouse, Domestic Partner*, Registered Companion*, Children under age 24)
  • Unlimited D2R travel for the retiree and each eligible traveler
  • Unlimited D2P travel for the retiree’s Parents or In-laws* (D2R when traveling with the employee)
  • Eight one-way D3 guest passes
  • Unlimited AA20 (20% discounts of AA full fares) travel
  • 20% off AAdvantage award redemptions
  • ZED fare travel per specific carrier agreements (myIDtravel in AA Retirees site)

*imputed income may apply

Imputed Income

Some travelers generate “imputed taxable income.” These include:

  • Registered Companions
  • Domestic Partners
  • All non-dependent children age 19-23
  • In-laws/Domestic Partners’ parents

Retirees and former employees with travel privileges and their eligible travelers fly free in all cabins on American Airlines and American Eagle flights. International taxes and fees are charged to the traveler. (NOT INCLUDED: jumpseat travel, reciprocal cabin seat travel)

Retirees will retain access to the Travel Planner via the AA Retirees Site for checking loads, making flight listings, and placing themselves and their registered travelers on the standby list. The site also has a link to myIDtravel for purchasing and self-ticketing ZED fares on other carriers.

Airline friendly travel agencies such as Perx and Dargal also extend travel discounts to airline retirees.

Paying for Travel Charges

While travel is free, retirees will still be responsible for government taxes and airport fees, depending on the destination, as well as any service charges for D2P and D3 travel. All charges are paid via credit card, with specific card information provided when the listing is made on Travel Planner. You can even use the traveler’s credit card instead of your own. Email [email protected] for travel charge queries.

Retirement Income

You have several sources of income in retirement: 401k, Pension (LAA pre-2012 hires, LUS pre- 2/1/05 hires with a pension), Social Security, QPSA (LAA) / QDRO, Individual Retirement Accounts (IRA), and Savings

American Airlines 401k

The most effective and commonly used retirement savings tool is a 401k account. But it's only good if you take advantage of it. As Flight Attendants, we have the ability to contribute to either:

  • A PRE-TAX REGULAR 401K account that earns investment returns tax free until it is withdrawn.
  • A ROTH 401K account where all future investment earnings are tax free, but what you contribute goes in as a post-tax contribution.

The maximum employee contribution for 2023 is $22,500 with an additional $7,500 allowable “catch up” contribution for those over 50. A 401k plan has an unbeatable combination of advantages - payroll deduction and employer contributions.

Catch up contributions and regular contributions are deducted concurrently. Please keep this in mind at the end of the calendar year, as your Catch-Up contributions will continue in the New Year unless you reset the field to ZERO on your Fidelity Contribution page.

Match and Contribution: 3% contribution and up to a 2.5% match start after one year of service.

Investing in a 401k is a wise thing to do. If you don't know where to start, or are unsure about what options are right for you, Fidelity Brokerage Services has resources and tools at http://netbenefits.com/aa.

Pay Eligible for Contribution and Match

What kind of pay is eligible for the contribution and match from the company?

  • Flight Pay and Credit
  • Deicing, Diversion and ATC pay
  • Special Assignment Pay
  • Training Pay
  • Holding/Ground Time Pay
  • Understaffing Pay
  • Purser Pay
  • Galley Pay
  • International Override Pay
  • Language Pay
  • Bid Denial Pay
  • Training Stipend Pay
  • Profit Sharing

401k Basics

Paycheck Contribution Limits
Automatic payroll deductions are up to 100% of eligible pay, up to annual IRS limits.

Eligibility for Employer-Matching Contributions
All employees become eligible for the employer-matching contribution after completion of one year of service.

Vesting Schedule for Employer Matching Contributions
You will become eligible for company match and contributions on your one-year anniversary and will become 100% vested (your money to keep) after two years of vesting service.

Fidelity Brokerage Link
You can set up a self-directed brokerage account, as one of the options in your 401k. This allows you to invest in almost any tradable security on US stock exchanges.

Commission Fees
The online commission rate for trade in a self-directed brokerage account is currently $0 per trade.

Loan Provisions
A participant may have up to two loans. After paying off an outstanding loan, participants must wait 30 days before a new loan can be requested. A loan default will count toward your “two loan” maximum. The interest rate for all loans will be prime + 1% based on published rates by Reuters. The minimum balance to request a loan is $2,000 and the minimum amount that can be borrowed is $1,000. The maximum loan is 50% of your balance up to $50,000. General loans have a term of 12 to 60 months, home loans have a term of 12 to 360 months.

401k Freeze
Upon termination from the company, the plan will be frozen for 30 days, after which, the participant may request a distribution, rollover, or make investment changes.

Contribution Percentage
All elections must be made in half percentage increments (example; 4.0%, 4.5%). (Previous elections made in tenths will remain in effect until you make a contribution change.)

Hardship Withdrawals
Any hardship withdrawal will result in a contribution suspension of six months, at which time contributions will resume automatically.

Account Statements
Statements will be available online only, unless the participant specifically requests a paper copy.

Roth Conversion
401k Plan Participants have the option of converting pre-tax assets from their 401k into a Roth account within the same 401k. Call the Fidelity Service Center for details.

If you have an outstanding loan at the time of your separation, AA will allow you to continue to pay back the loan per the original terms of the amortization schedule. If you decide to take a total distribution via cash out or rollover, your outstanding loan will default and become a taxable distribution. If you are under 59.5, you will also be assessed an early withdrawal penalty. Talk to your financial planner about what to do with this money. Contact information for Fidelity is at the back of this packet.

Pensions

NOTE: We hope you find this information helpful. Keep in mind, it is offered for your assistance and guidance only. Please be sure to check everything in contract (CBA) and in jetnet. Check with your financial and legal advisers before making any decisions. APFA and/or its representatives are not your attorney or your financial adviser. These handouts and/or these briefings do not create any obligation or rights. Certain information in this handout is also unique to each legacy carrier and will be identified with LAA or LUS.

Legacy US Pensions (LUS)

Legacy US Pensions are administered by the PBGC. As a result, they are governed under different rules. Early pension, full pension, and the age at which you can draw your pension and still fly will vary depending on which US Airways legacy carrier you started with. Legacy US Flight Attendants with questions regarding their pensions should contact the PBGC Administration at (800) 400-7242 or visit the PBGC website. At the time of the plan’s termination in 2005, the PBGC conducted an audit for each member of the plan. All reviews, verifications and calculations were completed and formal determination letters describing the amount of pension benefits were sent to participants and beneficiaries in 2005.

Legacy Carrier Early Pension Age Early Pension Reduction Full Pension & Age
Shuttle 52 3% per year prior to age 62 (max reduction of 30%) 62
Piedmont, Allegheny, US Air 55 3% per year prior to age 62 (max reduction of 21%) 62
PSA 55 3% per year prior to age 65 (max reduction of 30%) 65

(Taking your pension while still working.) After June 2021, has the same full pension age and pension reduction age/amounts (listed above) as taking your pension after retirement.

Legacy US Airways plans have a Social Security offset provision. This offset reduces the pension when the retiree turns 62 if they are single, or when the younger of the employee and the spouse turns 62 if married.

Flight Attendants commencing the pension before they turn 62 (or if married, before they or their spouse turn 62) have the option of drawing more from the Straight Life Annuity or the 50% Joint and Survivor Annuity (options A and B on the PBGC estimate) before they reach the offset age, and then less afterwards, or they may choose a “level-ized” option that factors in the offset from the beginning of the benefit period, but pays a consistent monthly annuity option that will not reduce (options C thru J on the PBGC estimate). Flight Attendants commencing the pension after age 62 (or if married, after both they and their spouse have turned 62) will see the offset reduction factored into all annuity options.

Flight Attendants with a PBGC pension (LUS, Eastern, TWA, etc.), must contact the PBGC directly for pension estimates and information, by calling (800) 400-7242, emailing [email protected] or visiting https://mypba.pbgc.gov/mypba2/faces/login.

Once you create your account, the site will allow you to request an estimate for your specific pension, see the ways you can elect to take your pension, the effect that beneficiaries have on your pension, and keep your contact information up to date. It is recommended that you set up your account well in advance of when you wish to commence your benefits, so there won’t be a delay when you are ready to start drawing your pension. Plan for at least a 90 day lead time when you are ready to begin pension benefits. If you are commencing your pension before full retirement age, you will need to complete a Retirement Notification Form (RNF) available from your manager. The company will mail you a confirmation letter, which must be submitted with your pension kit to the PBGC to confirm that you are ending your employment.

Legacy AA Pensions (LAA)

If you leave at this age *Are you vested? **RES You can start you pension at this age with this reduction
65+ Yes: automatic at age 65 N/A Unreduced Pension Immediately
< 65 No N/A No Pension
< 65 Yes < 10 years Unreduced Pension at 65
60+ Yes 10+ years Unreduced Pension Immediately
< 60 Yes 10-15 years Unreduced Pension @ 65, or any age 60-65 w/ Pension actuarially reduced
55+ Yes 15+ years Unreduced Pension @ 60, or any age 55-59 w/ Pension reduced 3% for each year less than 60
< 55 Yes 15+ years Unreduced Pension @ 60, or any age 55-59 w/ Pension reduced 3% for each year less than 60

*You are vested when you have 5 or more years of “vesting service”. Vested means your pension is “locked in”. You cannot lose it. You WILL get a pension at age 65, maybe sooner.
**You earn one full year of Retirement Eligibility Service for each calendar year you are paid 734 or more flight hours. If you had less than 734 flight hours, you get a partial year of credit = paid hours / 734.

  1. Log in to netbenefits.com/a
  2. Scroll down and under Pensions, select “American Airlines Flight Attendants Pension Plan” (this opens in a new page)
  3. Select the “Estimate” tab
  4. On the Estimate a Payment screen, you will be presented three questions asking for dates. (The Estimator lets you put in an age or a date.) For the first question, LAST DAY WORKED, use the LAST DAY OF THE CALENDAR MONTH IN WHICH YOU PLAN TO LEAVE, or your AGE on that date.
  5. The next question is BENEFIT COMMENCEMENT DATE. What Date will you begin to Draw Your Pension? It’s a good idea to do two estimates: one for when you are 60 so that you will see an unreduced amount, and one for when you are 55, which is the earliest you can draw a pension. This estimate will reflect the fact that you take a 3% reduction per year for each year you draw your pension earlier than 60. You can only do one estimate at a time, so you will need to complete the first estimate and then begin another one. The dates you put in should be the first of the month following your 55th and 60th birthdays.
  6. The third question asks your beneficiary type, Spouse, Non-spouse, or None. It then asks for that beneficiary’s DATE OF BIRTH. If you want your pension to continue to be paid to someone after your death, put their date of birth in here. Note, leaving a benefit for someone else reduces your benefit while you are alive.
  7. It will take a few minutes as the computer is researching to find what your best 48 consecutive months are out of the last 120 months and figuring your years of credited service.
  8. Once it is complete, it will show you the different amount of pension payments available to you depending on how you decide you want to take your pension.

NOTE: If you are a former employee without retiree.aa.com access, you can request information from the AA Pension Service Center at (800) 447-2000, option 1, 3, 4. (International calls 781-680-8185, Ext 44428) or by calling the AA Service Center at Fidelity 800-354-3412.

LAA Pension Definitions

A specific amount is contributed to a retirement fund. Each employee has an account balance in the fund and typically can select from several investment choices. In some cases, a company will contribute a percentage of workers earnings, in other cases the employer will match an employee’s contribution (this requires that an employee contribute in order to realize any benefit from the employer). In other situations, an employer is the plan sponsor but the employee makes all contributions. The principle is a series of payments determined by the retirement plan formula, which are paid at specific intervals, in our case monthly for the pensioner’s lifetime.

Retiree is provided a specific annuity for life based on the retirement plan formula. For us, the terms of this are negotiated and described in Article 26 of our Contract. The Retirement Benefit Plan of American Airlines, Inc. for Flight Attendants is a Defined Benefit Plan and is paid for completely by American Airlines. The SPD (Summary Plan Description) is available on JETNET.

Any age prior to age 65 that a Flight Attendant can elect to retire and begin receiving retirement benefits. The minimum age to begin collecting any benefits is 55. Our Contract allows early retirement with pension at age 55 with 15 years of credited service or at age 60 with 10 years of credited service. If you leave before age 60 with less than 15 YCS your pension annuity would be permanently reduced if you elected to commence it prior to 65. Health and travel benefits are based upon age and Company Seniority – the earliest age is 55 with 10 years of Company Seniority.

The average earnings used in determining your pension benefit. This is computed using the eligible annual earnings for the highest 48 consecutive months out of the last 120 months worked prior to the freeze date of 10/31/2012.

*Reflects a hard freeze date of 11/1/12

The combined number of years credited from work at AA and other carriers that were absorbed through acquisitions and mergers (Reno Air, Air Cal and TWA). It is used to determine ELIGIBILITY ONLY (not value) for pension benefits. Our plan allows us to continue to accrue retirement eligibility service, but NOT years of credited service since the pension freeze.

There are six measures of service that are used for various purposes in your employment. The three “seniorities” are described below; the other three are Years of Credited Service, Retirement Eligibility Service and Vesting.

  • Company Seniority (benefits) – Starts out as date of hire but is adjusted for certain specified absences from active status.
  • Classification Seniority (pay) – Begins accruing when placed on line as Flight Attendant and determines pay step as Flight Attendant.
  • Occupational Seniority (bidding) – Based upon length of service as a Flight Attendant. This is bidding seniority and is updated annually in June. It is also referred to as “Union Seniority.”

Time accrued towards determining if you have a “right” to a pension benefit. Vesting credit begins on date of hire. One year is earned for each calendar year that you are paid 386 hours. There are no proportionate accruals, so if you aren’t paid at least 386 hours in a year you receive no credit. Five years are necessary to be fully vested and to be eligible to receive a pension benefit. Once you are fully vested, you are entitled to your pension benefit and cannot lose it regardless of when you leave the Company. If you stay with the Company until age 65, you are fully vested at age 65 regardless of your years of vesting.

This is a measure used to determine the amount of your retirement benefit. It is also used to determine the earliest age at which you can commence your pension. Accrual and entry into the Plan begin after completion of one year of service with American Airlines if you are paid at least 386 hours in that year. If not, accrual and entry into the Plan begin on January 1 after any calendar year in which you were paid 386 hours. After Plan entry, a Flight Attendant earns one year of credited service for each calendar year in which s/he is paid 734 or more hours of service.

Pay for less than 734 hours in a calendar year will result in a partial accrual for that year. Currently, the Company notifies you of your accrued YCS through your annual pension statement on JETNET.

*Reflects a hard freeze date of 11/1/12

Are there choices about how my pension is paid?

Both Legacy AA and Legacy US plans share three options in how a pension is paid. The snaps shots in the following section will also show you how these options appear on the LAA and PBGC LUS pension estimates.

LAA: Single Line Annuity (SLA)

The Single Line Annuity (SLA) calculation is the highest benefit level. It is the basic calculation from which all other forms are determined. It is paid for the lifetime of the retiree but does not provide a survivor benefit and will cease upon the death of the retiree. The SLA is the default form of benefit paid to a single employee.

LUS: Striaght-Life Annuity

The PBGC refers to this as the STRAIGHT-LIFE ANNUITY. On the PBGC estimate, participants starting their pension prior to age 62 will have the option of taking their annuity with either a pre and post offset amount (Option A) or the “level-ized” option, which spreads the offset out over the participants lifetime, but offers the same monthly amount from the start of the benefit (Option C).

What are the other forms of payments?

LAA / LUS: Spouse 50% Joint Annuity
This is the automatic method of payment for a married employee. The calculation for the single lifetime annuity is done, and then a permanent reduction is applied to the calculation based upon the age of the retiree and spouse at the time of retirement. In the event of the death of the retiree, the spouse will receive a payment equal to 50% of the amount that was being paid to the employee. A married employee may elect the lifetime annuity or any of the other forms of payment; however, a notarized consent of the spouse is required. Like the Straight Life Annuity option with the PBGC, participants have the option of choosing to take this benefit either with a pre and post offset amount (Option B) or a “level-ized” amount (Option D,E,F) shown in the next section.

LAA

LUS

LUS: Joint and Survivor Annuity (50%, 75% OR 100%)
This payment method allows an employee to designate anyone as a beneficiary to receive the selected level of benefit payable in the event of the retiree predeceases the beneficiary. This method of payment also has a permanent reduction based upon age of the retiree and beneficiary. It is paid for the lifetime of the retiree and provides a lifetime survivor benefit to the beneficiary at the designated level of payment. Please note: The 75% and 100% options (Options E,F) may only be taken as a “level-ized” option with the Social Security offset factored in from the beginning of the benefit. When selecting a beneficiary who is not the spouse, only the “level-ized” options (D,E,F) are permitted.

LAA / LUS: Pop Up Option (50%, 75% OR 100%)
The “Pop Up” payment method is much the same as the Joint and Survivor Annuities described above, however, if the designated beneficiary predeceases the retiree, the amount of the pension benefit “pops up” to the amount it would have been if no beneficiary calculations had been applied. There is a slightly higher reduction in the initial calculation to pay for this.

LAA

LUS

*The PBGC only permits the 50% option in their plan (Option G).

NOTE: In the three options described above there can be no change of joint annuitant should they predecease the retiree.

LAA / LUS: Period Certain (Guaranteed for LAA: 10, 15, OR 20 Years / LUS: 5, 10, OR 15 Years)
This method also has a permanent reduction applied to the pension calculation. This method of payment is paid for the lifetime of the retiree and provides a possible survivor benefit for a specified period of time. Should the retiree pre-decease the beneficiary; the beneficiary will receive the full amount for the remaining portion of the guaranteed period. Should the beneficiary pre-decease the retiree before the end of the specified period; a new beneficiary may be named. If the retiree is still collecting their pension when the specified time has elapsed, there will be no survivor benefit. This appears as Options H, I, and J on the PBGC estimate.

LAA

LUS

LAA: Level Income Option (More Up Front)
This option (for LAA only) is designed to provide a level income during retirement by considering your Social Security benefit. The Level Income Annuity Option provides an increased monthly benefit to age 62 or Social Security Normal Retirement Age, as selected by you, when many people begin receiving Social Security benefits. The monthly benefit decreases when you reach the selected age (62 or Social Security Normal Retirement Age) even if you do not begin receiving Social Security benefits at that age. This option is always combined with another option such as a Single Life Annuity, a Joint & Survivor Annuity, or a Guaranteed Period Option.

Pension Payment FAQ

Neither plan has provisions for a lump sum payout. (LAA pensions with a lifetime value of less than $5,000 will be cashed out)

Your estimates are available on JETNET and from the PBGC. Make copies and discuss them with your spouse/partner or potential beneficiary. It is also a good idea to consult a financial adviser when making decisions such as these because the elections are final once made.

Flight attendants commencing their pensions past a certain age will be eligible for an actuarial increase in their monthly payments based on how old they are when they commence the benefit. Actuarial adjustments are made for Legacy AA flight attendants commencing their benefit past age 70.5. The PBGC calls this a Late Retirement Factor and will make the actuarial adjustment when a Legacy US flight attendant begins their pension past age 62 (Shuttle) or 65 (Non-shuttle). View the LUS Late Retirement Factors Table

How to Apply for Your Pension

LAA
It is a multistep process. To apply for your pension: Log in to www.netbenefits.com/AA. Scroll down and under Pensions, select “American Airlines Flight Attendants Pension Plan - Team Member Services” tab (this opens in a new page). Next, select the “Collect Your Pension” tab and follow the prompts. You can also request a kit over the phone by calling the Pension Service Center at (800) 447-2000, option 1, 3, 4. (International calls 781-680-8185, Ext 44428). This needs to be done no earlier than 90 days, and no later than 45 days, prior to date you wish to begin collecting you pension. Paperwork is mailed within 7-10 days and should be returned at least two weeks before your retirement date so processing can begin on time. You can call Fidelity direct at 800-354-3412.

Contact your supervisor and tell them you are retiring and give them the date. Remind them to contact the Flight Attendant Service Center to request your Payroll Transfer Record (PTR) be cut over to Retired (RT). Don’t forget when picking your exit date, that pensions only start on the first of the month. If you retire on the second, you miss a whole month of pension payments! It is a good idea to leave at the end of the calendar month and retire on the first day of the next calendar month. There is a checklist to follow at the back of this packet.

LUS
LUS flight attendants should request their pension materials directly from the PBGC. The process should start 90 days before benefit commencement. The PBGC can be reached at (800) 400-7242 on https://www.pbgc.gov/

Taxes

Both LAA and LUS pensions are subject to withholding of federal and state (if applicable) income tax. When you request your pension kit, the paperwork will include a W4P form from the IRS. Your withholding amount is determined by the number of allowances you select. Consult with your accountant or tax advisor to determine the right number of allowances you will claim. Most pensioners will not have a good idea of their income tax liability until they have been drawing their pension for a full tax year, and other factors may contribute to what you decide to claim in allowances (such as if you are LUS and double or triple dipping). New W4P forms can always be submitted if you wish to make a change. The 1099-R tax form will be mailed to you at the beginning of the year for the previous tax year. Pensions are not considered earned wages, so they are not subject to Social Security and Medicare taxes.

Before You Complete the Pension Paperwork

When you receive your pension kit in the mail, make a copy of the paperwork before you start filling it out so you have a spare in case you make a mistake. When you have completed the paperwork, make a copy for yourself before mailing it off. Pension kits should be mailed no later than the 3rd week of the month before your retirement on the first of the next month. If you have been down more than just the airplane aisle a few times and have not already submitted your Divorce Decree or QDRO, you will need to include a copy of this paperwork with your kit. If you are widowed, you will also need to include a copy of your spouse’s death certificate. If these items are not included, your pension payments will be delayed until the documents are received. If you are planning to retire and do not have these documents, contact the county that issued them and request copies so as not to delay your pension.

Keep in mind that your pension kit will not be processed until you have officially retired or separated from the Company (or reached the month following your Double Dipping age if LUS). Your first pension check is always paid retroactively, normally about 6 – 8 weeks after you retire.

LAA: Qualified Pre-Retirement Survivor Annuity (QPSA)

Your selection of a Joint Annuitant when you request your pension, determines how you would leave your pension to a survivor once you are retired. What happens if you were to pass away before you retire? Does anyone inherit your pension?

Federal law requires that a pension plan must allow a pension to be inherited by a spouse. The default amount mandated by federal law is for the surviving spouse to get 50% of your joint and survivor pension.

APFA negotiated a better benefit. If you file a QPSA (qualified pre-retirement survivor annuity) form you can designate that your legally married spouse receives up to 100% of your joint and survivor pension should you die before you retire. For Flight Attendants, this benefit is a no cost option. If you do not fill out this form, should you die before benefit commencement, your spouse will only receive 50% of your pension. Once you make your selections for form of benefit at retirement and begin receiving pension payments, this form is replaced by your new selection. There are copies of this form at the back of this packet, the APFA website, and the Pension Service Center site on jetnet.

Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO)

A QDRO is a decree from your divorce settlement that will indicate if your ex-spouse is entitled to a portion of your pension, and if so, how much. If you have gone thru a divorce during your time as an employee of American Airlines, HR will need a copy of your QDRO or Divorce Decree on file before they will initiate pension payments. The company does not pay pensions until all forms are complete and on file. If you have an LAA pension, QDRO’s on file will be have a “Yes” indication in your Plan Specific Data section of the Pension Service section on jetnet. QDRO forms can be mailed to: American Airlines HR Services, P.O. Box 14452, Des Moines, IA 50306-3452

LUS: QDRO’s must be sent to the PBGC. Visit https://www.pbgc.gov/wr/benefits/qdro for information about submitting your QDRO to the PBGC.

Social Security

Full retirement age is the age at which a person may first become entitled to full or unreduced Social Security retirement benefits. No matter what your full retirement age (also called Social Security Normal Retirement Age - SSNRA), you may start receiving benefits as early as age 62 or as late as age 70.5.

Retiring Early

You can retire at any time before full retirement age. However, if you start benefits early, your benefits are reduced a fraction of a percent for each month before your full retirement age. The following chart lists age 62 reduction amounts and includes examples based on an estimated monthly benefit of $1000 a month at full retirement age.

Pros and Cons of When to Begin Taking Your Social Security Payments

As a general rule, early or late retirement will give you about the same total Social Security benefits over a normal lifetime. If you retire early, the monthly benefit amounts will be smaller to take into account the longer period you will receive them. If you retire later, you will get benefits for a shorter period of time but the monthly amounts will be larger to make up for the months when you did not receive anything.

There are advantages and disadvantages to taking your benefit before your full retirement age. The advantage is that you collect benefits for a longer period of time. The disadvantage is your benefit is reduced. Each person's situation is different, so

  • If you delay your benefits until after full retirement age, you may be eligible for delayed retirement credits that would increase your monthly benefit;
  • There are other things to consider when making the correct decision about your retirement benefits.

Working and Drawing Social Security Benefits

You can work while you receive Social Security retirement (or survivors) benefits. When you do, it could mean a higher benefit for you in the future. Higher benefits can be important to you later in life and increase the future benefit amounts your family and your survivors could receive.

Note: If you are outside the United States, the rules for receiving benefits while you are working are different.

If you decide to take your benefits early, you can continue to work but you are limited in how much you can earn while getting early Social Security benefits. While you are working, your earnings will reduce your benefit amount only until you reach your full retirement age. After you reach full retirement age, Social Security recalculates your benefit amount to leave out the months when they reduced or withheld benefits due to your excess earnings.

Social Security uses a formula to determine how much your benefit must be reduced:

  • If you are under full retirement age for the entire year, they deduct $1 from your benefit payments for every $2 you earn above the annual limit. For 2023, that limit is $21,240.
  • In the year you reach full retirement age, they deduct $1 in benefits for every $3 you earn above the limit, but they only count earnings before the month you reach your full retirement age.
  • If you will reach full retirement age in 2023, the limit on your earnings for the months before full retirement age is $56,520.
  • Starting with the month you reach full retirement age, you can get your benefits with no limit on your earnings.

Are Social Security Benefits Taxable?

The short answer is maybe. For a complete answer, visit the IRS Website. Social Security Estimated Benefits paper statements are no longer mailed annually. Electronic versions are available at any time via the Social Security website. Sign up and register today at http://ssa.gov.

Other Retirement Income

Individual Retirement Accounts (IRA)

An Individual Retirement Account is a type of "individual retirement plan", offered by many financial institutions. It provides tax advantages for retirement savings in the United States. There are two main types of IRA accounts:

  1. Traditional IRA – contributions are “before tax” and grow untaxed until you withdraw the money. Withdrawals at retirement are taxed as income.
  2. Roth IRA – contributions are made “after-tax”, and grow untaxed. Withdrawals (including interest) are tax free in retirement.

Contribution Maximums: For 2023, the maximum contributions for both the Traditional IRA and the Roth IRA are $6,500 with an extra $1,000 for individuals over 50 years of age.
Imcome Limits: You can contribute the maximum to a Roth IRA in 2023 only if your adjusted gross income is less than $138,000 if single or $218,000 if married filing jointly.
Tax Credits: Individuals with lower incomes can file a Retirement Savings Contribution Credit on their income taxes. Visit http://www.irs.gov/taxtopics/tc610.html for more information.

2023 Saver's Credit
Credit Rate Married Filing Jointly Head of Household All Other Filers*
50% of contribution AGI up to $43,500 AGI up to $32,625 AGI up to $21,750
20% of contribution $43,501 - $47,500 $32,626 - $35,625 $21,751 - $23,750
10% of contribution $47,501 - $73,000 $35,626 - $54,750 $23,751 - $36,500

Savings

Personal savings for each person will vary based on individual circumstances. Savings can include, but are not limited to Equity in your home, Life Insurance, Inheritance, Saving Accounts and Certificates of Deposit (CD’s). While there is no minimum required amount, it’s important to have an adequate savings base to complement your other income holdings. The consensus is that your savings should be able to cover a minimum of three to six months of living expenses. A Financial Advisor can give you recommendations on how to have a healthy portfolio.

Previous Early Out Offerings

Post-Retirement Health Benefits

Start Here: Are You Eligible For Medicare?

Medicare

Retiree medical insurance is not available to you once you turn 65, and COBRA is considered secondary to Medicare. Unless you are going on some other active medical insurance that is considered creditable coverage by Medicare, you will be enrolling in Medicare. If you will be 65 or older at your exit date, you will want to begin researching the type of coverage you will want to purchase with Medicare. There are numerous books on Medicare as well as lots of information on the Medicare website at www.medicare.gov. If you are eligible for early Medicare as the result of a disability, do not sign up for the American Airlines Retiree Medical Plan or elect COBRA. Medicare is as easy as A B D!

Medicare Part A:
Covers hospitalization

Medicare Part A covers inpatient hospital, skilled nursing facility, and some home health care services and for most people has been prefunded. About 99 percent of Medicare beneficiaries do not have a Part A premium since they have at least 40 quarters of Medicare-covered employment.

Medicare Part B:
Covers physician care

If modified adjusted gross income as reported on your IRS tax return from 2 years ago (the most recent tax return information provided to Social Security by the IRS) is above a certain amount, you may pay more.

Medicare Part D:
Covers prescription drug benefits

Medicare offers prescription drug coverage to everyone with Medicare. To get Medicare drug coverage, you must join a plan run by an insurance company or other private company approved by Medicare. Each plan can vary in cost and drugs covered.

Late Enrollment Fees

Medicare Part B and D have late enrollment fees of 10% per year for each year you delay signing up for coverage after age 65. Retiring flight attendants over age 65 can waive these fees by showing they had employer sponsored coverage when they first enroll. The two ways to do this are with a Letter of Credible Coverage from the Benefits Service Center or having AA complete the Employer Verification Form.

Medicare Supplemental (Medigap) Insurance

Medicare supplement (Medigap) insurance, sold by private companies, can help pay some of the health care costs that Original Medicare doesn’t cover, like copayments, coinsurance, and deductibles. Some Medigap policies also cover medical care when you travel outside the U.S. If you have Original Medicare and you buy a Medigap policy, Medicare will pay its share of the Medicare-approved amount for covered health care costs. Then your Medigap policy pays its share.

Airline Retiree VEBA
Retiring Flight Attendants who are 65 and over may take advantage of an Airline Retiree Medicare Voluntary Employee Beneficiary Association (VEBA) to help pay for out of pocket costs associated with Parts A, B and D.  The VEBA Retiree Services number is (888) 287-4101.  Their current Benefits Guide is available for download from the Retirement page at apfa.org.

All of the information below is found on the Medicare website at www.medicare.gov.  Make sure you shop a variety of Medigap and Part D drug plans to make sure you get the plans that are right for your needs. There is a plan finder on the Medicare website.

NOTE: A Medigap policy is different from a Medicare Advantage Plan. Those plans are ways to get Medicare benefits, while a Medigap policy only supplements your Original Medicare benefits.

How do I compare Medigap policies?
If a percentage appears, the Medigap plan covers that percentage of the benefit, and you’re responsible for the rest. Visit Medicare.gov to see the 202 benefit amounts.

* Plans F and G also offers a high-deductible plan in some states. With this option, you must pay for Medicare-covered costs (coinsurance, copayments, and deductibles) up to the deductible amount of $2,700 in 2023 before your policy pays anything. (Plans C and F won’t be available to people who are newly eligible for Medicare on or after January 1, 2020. See previous page for more information.)
** For Plans K and L, after you meet your out-of-pocket yearly limit and your yearly Part B deductible, the Medigap plan pays 100% of covered services for the rest of the calendar year.
*** Plan N pays 100% of the Part B coinsurance, except for a copayment of up to $20 for some office visits and up to a $50 copayment for emergency room visits that don’t result in an inpatient admission.

Eight Things to Know About Medigap Policies 

  1. You must have Medicare Part A and Part B.
  2. If you have a Medicare Advantage Plan, you can apply for a Medigap policy, but make sure you can leave the Medicare Advantage Plan before your Medigap policy begins.
  3. You pay the private insurance company a monthly premium for your Medigap policy in addition to the monthly Part B premium that you pay to Medicare.
  4. A Medigap policy only covers one person. If you and your spouse both want Medigap coverage, you’ll each have to buy separate policies.
  5. You can buy a Medigap policy from any insurance company that’s licensed in your state to sell one.
  6. Any standardized Medigap policy is guaranteed renewable even if you have health problems. This means the insurance company can’t cancel your Medigap policy as long as you pay the premium.
  7. Some Medigap policies sold in the past cover prescription drugs, but Medigap policies sold after January 1, 2006 aren’t allowed to include prescription drug coverage. If you want prescription drug coverage, you can join a Medicare Prescription Drug Plan (Part D).
  8. It’s illegal for anyone to sell you a Medigap policy if you have Medicare Medical Savings.

Medicare Advantage Plans (Part C)

Another option is buying your Medicare through a Medicare Advantage Plan, commonly called a Part C plan. This essentially rolls your Part A, B and (in some cases) D plans into an HMO or PPO administered by a private insurance company. You can choose the plan that fits your needs, and in some cases, attach additional benefits to the plan such as vision, hearing, and dental. In addition to your Part B premium, you will have a monthly premium for your Advantage plan. It’s best to consult a Medicare Broker if going this route as you want to make sure you choose a plan that works for you and includes the doctors you visit and the prescription drugs you take.

What is a Medicare health plan? A plan offered by a private company that contracts with Medicare to provide Part A and Part B benefits. Health plans include all Medicare Advantage Plans, Medicare Cost Plans, Demonstration/Pilot Programs, and Programs of All-inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE).  With Medicare Advantage Plans, you’re always covered for emergency and urgently needed care. Medicare Advantage Plans must cover all of the services that Original Medicare covers except hospice care

The plan can choose not to cover the costs of services that aren’t medically necessary under Medicare. If you’re not sure whether a service is covered or not, check with your provider before you get the service.

Non-Medicare Options

Not Medicare Eligible Yet

Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA)

You may continue your active medical insurance thru COBRA for 18 months after you leave the company. You have 60 days from your last day of employment to make your COBRA elections, so make sure that you don’t miss the deadline. In addition, COBRA coverage may be extended an additional 11 months, up to a maximum of 29 months, for Flight Attendants who qualify for Social Security Disability.

Continuation of Coverage (COBRA)
If your employment terminates for any reason (i.e., furlough, resignation, etc.), your active medical is cancelled, along with your other benefits. You may elect to continue your health benefits as part of your continuation of coverage options available through Alight, the COBRA administrator. Alight will mail a COBRA package to your home address (or to the address you provide) after your termination is processed. If you do not continue your active medical through COBRA, claims incurred after the date of your termination are not payable.

Several of American Airlines’ other benefits or plans (Dental Benefits, Vision Insurance Benefits, and Health Care Flexible Spending Accounts) provide for continuation of coverage under the COBRA in case of certain Qualifying Events. If you and/or your dependents have coverage at the time of the Qualifying Event, you may be eligible to elect continuation of coverage under the following:

  • Medical Benefits
  • Dental Benefits
  • Vision Insurance Benefits
  • Health Care Flexible Spending Account Benefit: for the remainder of the calendar year in which you became eligible for continuation of coverage. (Although you would not be able to make contributions on a pre-tax basis, by electing continuation of coverage for this account, you would still have the opportunity to file claims for reimbursement based on your account balance for the year.)

The coverage under COBRA is identical to coverage provided under the benefits or plans for active employees or their dependents, including future changes.

Cost of COBRA Coverage for 2023

Self-Funded Medical EO E+S E+C E+F
High Cost Coverage $1,353.86 $3,113.89 $2,436.93 $4,196.95
Standard $775.80 $1,784.33 $1,396.44 $2,404.96
Core $689.64 $1,586.16 $1,241.34 $2,137.89
DFW Connected Care $531.14 $1,221.61 $956.04 $1,646.51
Plus $756.30 $1,760.17 $1,377.54 $2,372.39
Dental
Basic Dental $26.81 $55.48 $60.05 $94.89
Plus Dental $37.23 $77.06 $83.41 $131.79
Vision
$6.16 $11.95 $11.73 $16.78

Alight
Alight is the COBRA billing administrator and handles solicitation and enrollment. You will receive a COBRA solicitation via mail within two weeks following your retirement. If you continue active coverage through COBRA, you will have no lapse of coverage of medical insurance, but until the coverage is entered into the system upon your enrollment, you will pay for medical care out of your pocket and apply for reimbursement.

Complete and mail the election form back to Alight. Once they receive the election notice, their system will be updated within 72 hours to show the elections. After elections are in the system you can make a payment. Once the payment is made and posted, eligibility will be sent to your claims administrators.

Over age 65?
Cobra is not considered credible coverage as defined by Medicare, and will become secondary coverage to Medicare.  If you are 65 or older when you retire, Medicare will become your primary coverage. Check with legal and financial advisers about medical coverage options if you are over 65 to avoid substantial financial penalties/reduction in coverage if you make the wrong choices!!  As a rule, COBRA will only pay 20%. (Please note that Flight Attendants qualifying for early Medicare due to a Social Security Disability award will not be permitted to remain on COBRA once they reach their Medicare eligibility date).

Under COBRA, the employee does not have to reestablish deductibles. Deductibles and out-of-pocket maximums met during active employment will continue.

Since COBRA is a continuation of your active medical, the cost is the total cost of your health insurance. That means it includes what you now pay through payroll deduction, what the company pays on your behalf as part of your benefits package, plus a 2% administration fee to cover the cost of administering COBRA benefits.

It is very important to make your payments to Alight on time as once COBRA coverage is lost due to late payment it will not be reinstated!!

Per the Employee Benefits Guide, “To maintain COBRA continuation of coverage, you must pay the full cost of continuation of coverage on time, including any additional expenses permitted by law. Your first payment is due within 45 days after you elect continuation of coverage. Premiums for subsequent months of coverage are due on the first day of each month for that month’s coverage. If you elect continuation of coverage, you will receive payment coupons or invoices from Alight, Inc. indicating when each payment is due. Payments are due even if you have not received your payment coupons. Failure to pay the required contribution on or before the due date, or by the end of the grace period will result in termination of COBRA coverage, without the possibility of reinstatement.”

American Airlines Retiree Medical Insurance

Retirees between the ages 55 and 65 at separation, who meet the 65 Point Plan requirements, are eligible to purchase retiree medical insurance. You pay the full contribution cost for this pre-65 retiree medical coverage if you choose to enroll. Legacy AA Flight Attendants who retired prior to 11/1/12 continue to receive pre-funded retiree medical insurance.

The Retiree Standard Medical Plan (RSMP)
Retiree medical coverage is offered through the preferred administrator for your state. You can request a packet with enrollment information and plan details after you retire (you will also receive a COBRA solicitation. Do not confuse the two). You can only enroll in retiree medical once, any time after retirement but before age 65. For the first 30 days after separation you may enroll online. After that, just call the Benefits Service Center at (888) 860-6178. American reserves the right to amend or terminate the RSMP at any time.

Paying for Coverage
You must pay your retiree medical contributions each month by the due date. Do not be late! If your payment is late, your coverage will be terminated and you will NOT be able to re-enroll. Alight handles the billing and payment is made a month in advance. They offer an Automatic Billing feature to pay your contribution costs and ensure payments are always on time. The chart below explains the plan premiums, and maximum benefits for 2022.

Retiree Standard
Individual Medical Maximum Benefit $300,000
In Network Deductible $150 per person / $400 family
Out of Network Deductible $150 per person / $400 family
Coinsurance (In/Out) 20% / 40%
In Network Out of Pocket Max (Single/Family) $1,000 / $3,000
Out of Network Out of Pocket Max (Single/Family) $1,000 / $3,000
2022 Retiree Standard Medical Plan Premiums
Employee Only $2,171.00
Employee Plus 1 $4,342.00
Employee Plus 2 $6,513.00

Dependent Eligibility
Under the Retiree Medical Benefit, an eligible dependent is an individual who is related to the retiree in one of the following ways:

  • Spouse or Company-recognized Domestic Partner
  • For retirees under age 65, an eligible dependent may also include:
  • Unmarried child under age 19
  • Unmarried incapacitated child age 19 + who maintains legal residence with you.
  • Unmarried child age 19 through 22, if the child is registered as a full-time student at a school/educational institution in a program of study leading to a degree or certification (proof of continuing eligibility will be required from time to time) and either: The child maintains legal residence with you; or You are required to provide coverage under a Qualified Medical Child Support Order (QMCSO) that is issued by the court or a state agency. If, for medical reasons, the child is required to reduce or terminate his or her studies, coverage will be continued for up to 12 months (one year). The child must be under a physician’s care and statements must be provided from the attending physician and school/educational institution to your network/claims administrator. After 12 months (one year), coverage will end unless the child returns to school school/education institution full-time or meets the definition of an incapacitated child.

If you have enrolled your dependents into Retiree Medical by the time you turn 65, when your coverage ends at 65, they continue to be covered as long as they remain eligible. You may not enroll any new dependents into the plan after you turn 65.

Retiring after age 65? If you do not start Retiree Medical by age 65, you cannot get dependent coverage for your spouse or children, regardless of their eligibility.

If you take the AA RSMP - Supplemental coverage (Back Up Plan) DO NOT CONFUSE THIS COVERAGE WITH MEDIGAP/SUPPLEMENTAL POLICIES FOR MEDICARE. THIS SUPPLEMENTAL POLICY IS A BACK UP TO AMERICAN’S RETIREE MEDICAL PLAN.

If you exhaust your AA Retiree Medical, The Supplemental Medical Plan begins and pays a percentage of eligible expenses for medically necessary care, treatment and supplies up to the usual and prevailing fee limits with a maximum medical benefit of $500,000. You must enroll when you are first eligible as a retiree and maintain coverage. The plan’s claims are processed by HealthFirst TPA (800) 711-7083. Enrollment in the plan is handled by Alight.

When does Supplemental Medical pay a benefit?

  1. When you or your covered spouse exhausts your maximum medical benefit under your selected Retiree Medical Benefit Option.
  2. If you are the surviving spouse of a retired employee who dies while you are both covered under this Plan.

What happens to my retiree medical coverage after I turn 65?
When you reach age 65, Medicare becomes your primary coverage. You will no longer be eligible for American Airlines Retiree Medical Benefits. You will be offered access to purchase a Medicare supplement plan provided by United HealthCare, a third-party vendor. You are guaranteed coverage as long as you enroll when you first become eligible, regardless of your health status. Visit United HealthCare Medicare Solutions and use the Plan Selector Tool to compare different plans and pricing options that meet your needs. Via Benefits can also provide Medicare supplement quotes and their contact info is in the back of this handout.

Affordable Care Act (ACA)

The Affordable Healthcare Act (also known as the ACA) is a government-sponsored program that allows you to purchase insurance via a state or federal exchange. Visit http://healthcare.gov where you’ll provide some information about your household size and income to find out if you can get lower costs on your monthly premiums and out-of-pocket costs for private insurance plans. You’ll see all the health plans available in your area so you can compare them side-by-side and pick the plan that’s right for you.

Major insurance companies write the policies and you are allowed to shop in the marketplace for a policy that meets your specific needs. Premiums are based on Age and Zip Code. You can preview the premium rates in your area by visiting https://www.healthcare.gov/find-premium-estimates/.

American has contracted with a nationwide third-party provider called Via Benefits. Their insurance brokers can give you quotes and enroll you in an ACA plan. Additionally, they can quote and sell you private insurance policies. Their counselors can be reached at (844) 287-9947 and you can find more information thru their website http://my.viabenefits.com/americanairlines

Based on income levels, you may also be eligible for a tax credit to help lower premiums and out-of-pocket costs. A subsidy calculator for enrollments is available at https://www.healthinsurance.org/obamacare/subsidy-calculator/

Your retirement is a Qualifying Life Event and triggers a “Special Enrollment Period”, and allows you to purchase insurance via the Healthcare Marketplace outside of set annual enrollment periods.

Other Insurances

Dental Insurance

You will be offered retiree dental insurance. The cost of the retiree dental plan is determined by the zip code where you live. In most cases COBRA coverage that offers a continuation of your active dental will be less expensive and will be better coverage. The 18 months of COBRA dental coverage will give you time to shop dental plans including the retiree dental plan. The AA credit union has a dental club that gives you a network to choose dentists who will give you a discount on services. Dental insurance is difficult to find and expensive. Nobody wants to insure old people’s teeth but there are a few alternatives that you may wish to investigate.

While original Medicare doesn’t provide dental coverage, some Medicare Advantage (Part C) plans do.

Dental discount networks also exist. You pay annual membership fees ranging from $80-$200 a year in exchange for discounts ranging from 10% to 60% from participating dentist. To find a network, visit http://dentalplans.com and search for plans and providers by zip code. The AA Credit Union offers a dental discount network as well thru Benefit Services of America. Call (866) 838-1763 or email them at [email protected] for more information.

Dental schools provide dental care from students under the supervision of licensed professors for as much as half the cost of regular services. To search for dental schools, visit http://ada.org/dentalschools.

Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA)

There are two possible scenarios concerning your flexible spending account.

  1. Positive Balance: You leave with funds still in the account. For example: you elect to place $2500 in your account for next year, you leave at the end of March, and you have contributed $625 at that point, but have only used $400, American gets to keep the $225 already on deposit in the account. (Pro-Tip: you could continue your flexible spending account through COBRA. Although you could not continue to contribute pretax dollars, you could use what you have already contributed.)
  2. Negative Balance: You leave the company before year’s end with a zero balance in your flexible spending account. You have been paid out more than you have contributed to the account. You do not have to repay American the difference. For example: you elect $2,500 in your flexible spending account for next year. In January you have dental work done which requires all $2,500 from your account. You separate from the company and retire March 31.
  3. At that time, you have only contributed $625 to your account through payroll deduction, but you have used $2,500. You will not have to reimburse American the difference of $1,875.

Life Events & Optional Insurance

Life Events

Federal law defines your ability and time frame in which to apply for other insurance under a spouse/partner’s plan through a life event. You have the right to request “special enrollment” in another group health plan for which you are otherwise eligible (such as a plan sponsored by your spouse’s employer) within 30 days after your Plan coverage ends. You will also have the same “special enrollment” rights at the end of COBRA coverage if you get continuation of coverage for the maximum time available to you. Keep in mind that when joining your spouse’s plan, you must re-establish all deductible and out of pocket maximums under the new plan.

Optional Insurance

You can continue these coverages by contacting the vendors directly to continue your policies: Long-Term Care insurance, Hyatt Legal Plan, and other optional coverages available through AA Added Benefits. Please refer to contact page at the back of the packet for phone numbers to discuss continuation of these types of coverage.

You can convert/(port) your AA Life Insurance and/or Accident Insurance from a group policy to an individual policy: AA does not provide Retiree Life Insurance. Your current employee term life insurance and voluntary accident insurance ends at retirement. These policies include portability and conversion rights that allow you to continue coverage as a term policy or convert coverage to a personal policy (other than term life insurance) without providing proof of good health. To port or convert Life Insurance, contact MetLife at 1-877-275-6387 within 30 days of your last day on payroll. Policies for Accidental Death & Dismemberment and Voluntary Personal Accident Insurance can be converted by calling the Life Insurance Company of North America (LINA) at 1-800-238-2125, and select option 4 and 7.

Policies you cannot continue: You cannot continue LTD and STD as they replace existing income. However, if you are receiving LTD and/or STD payments may continue if you are eligible.

APFA Headquarters
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APFA Events

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March 7 @ 11:00 am - 1:00 pm

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APFA Headquarters
1004 West Euless Boulevard
Euless, Texas 76040

M-F: 9:00AM - 5:00PM (CT)
Phone: (817) 540-0108

Call APFA

Contract & Scheduling Desk
M-F: 7:00AM - 7:00PM (CT)
Phone: (817) 540-0108

Chat APFA

After-Hours Live Chat
M-F: 3:00PM - 11:00 PM (CT)
Sat-Sun: 9:00AM - 5:00PM (CT)

APFA Events

Financial Planning Seminar

March 7 @ 11:00 am - 1:00 pm

2024 BOD Convention

March 19 @ 9:00 am - March 21 @ 5:00 pm

APFA Headquarters
1004 West Euless Boulevard
Euless, Texas 76040

M-F: 9:00AM - 5:00PM (CT)
Phone: (817) 540-0108

Call APFA

Contract & Scheduling Desk
M-F: 7:00AM - 7:00PM (CT)
Phone: (817) 540-0108

Chat APFA

After-Hours Live Chat
M-F: 3:00PM - 11:00 PM (CT)
Sat-Sun: 9:00AM - 5:00PM (CT)

APFA Events

Financial Planning Seminar

March 7 @ 11:00 am - 1:00 pm

2024 BOD Convention

March 19 @ 9:00 am - March 21 @ 5:00 pm
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