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Salary Indemnity Plan (SIP)—Long-term 
Frequently asked questions  

Note:  

The Salary Indemnity Plan is not insured by an insurance company regulated under the Financial Institutions Act. The BCTF is exempt from the regulatory requirements of the Financial Institutions Act. 

Included for your information are some basic responses to frequently asked questions regarding the long-term portion of the Salary Indemnity Plan. If your question is not answered, please contact our office at 604-871-1921. 

Am I eligible to receive Long-term disability (LTD) benefits?
BCTF members employed on a regular full-time or part-time contract, who become disabled through injury or illness shall be eligible for benefits immediately following the termination of sick leave and SIP short-term benefits, when no fewer than 120 days of benefits have been paid for that claim.

BCTF employees participating in the plan pursuant to regulation 1.1(b) and who become disabled through injury or illness shall be eligible for benefits, or as set out in a collective agreement with the Federation, immediately following the termination of sick leave benefits.

What is the fee I pay for the LTD plan?
Plan members pay a fee of 1.21% of their salary for the 2017-18 fiscal year (July 1–June 30).

Am I able to withdraw from paying the LTD fee?
You may be able to save the long-term fee from the date you reach age 64, 34 years of contributory service, “Factor 88” (age plus contributory service), or if you are in receipt of a retirement pension through the Pension Corporation (BC). Why? Because you are no longer entitled to LTD benefits under the Salary Indemnity Plan (SIP) when you attain any of the following milestones:

  • 35 years of contributory service, with a minimum age of 55,
  • Age 61, if you reach “Factor 90” before age 61
  • “Factor 90” if you are between 61 and 65 years old,
  • Age 65, or
  • Receipt of a retirement pension through the Pension Corporation (BC).

How do I withdraw from paying the LTD fee?
A member who has attained age 64, has 34 years of contributory service, has reached “Factor 88,” or is in receipt of a retirement pension under a registered pension plan, may apply to voluntarily withdraw from the long-term portion of the SIP. Ensure that in the event of serious illness or accident you have sufficient accumulated sick leave, which, when combined with 120 days of benefit from SIP short-term, will protect your salary to the end of the month in which you reach one of the milestones mentioned above. Please note that withdrawal requires approval of the Salary Indemnity Plan Administrator.

To obtain an application, go to https://bctf.ca/SalaryAndBenefits.aspx?id=4782 or call the BCTF Income Security Division at 604-871-1921.

You have my claim; how long do I wait for a decision? What is the LTD claim process?
If they have the necessary information, GWL often turns around a decision within a few weeks. However, it is not unusual for GWL to require further medical information or a clarification on the medical information submitted as part of the application. If this is the case, members are notified by GWL. It is likely GWL will telephone a member for an interview prior to the decision. Once a decision has been reached the member is contacted by telephone with a follow-up letter.

How much do I receive in LTD benefits?
LTD benefits are 65% of the salary of the first $40,000, 50% of the next $40,000, and 40% of the remainder of your gross salary as reported to us by your employer. The benefit is non-taxable. In addition, the member does not pay, but receives credit for having paid, their pension as well as local and BCTF fees.

Do I have to attend assessments arranged by GWL?
Yes, plan members must attend medical or vocational assessments requested or approved by GWL or the SIP Administrator. These assessments assist GWL to determine how to manage your claim, return-to-work process, ability to perform gainful employment, etc.

How do I dispute GWL’s decision to deny/terminate my claim?
In the event a claimant disputes the decision of the external agency and/or the plan administrator regarding the medical acceptability of a claim, the dispute shall be finally and conclusively determined by a Medical Review Committee. The Medical Review Committee shall be composed of three physicians; one designated by the claimant, one by the Income Security Committee, and a third agreed to by the first two. The third physician shall act as a chairperson of the committee.

September 2017


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