The following is an overview of benefits provided to our members and their dependents. Some of these benefits are provided by the Welfare Fund, some require application to New York State, and others require that members enroll on an individual basis for benefits. For general information on these benefits, please contact the Union office; for specific details, please contact the appropriate provider, as noted.
(Parking Placard Form)
NYSCALA issues vehicle identification placards annually to members who wish to identify their vehicles as “On Official Court Business”. These placards do not confer any parking privileges but do provide identification for members’ cars. Completed forms may be mailed, e-mailed or faxed to the Union Office, as indicated on the form.
DENTAL BENEFITS (Dental Form)
The Union Welfare Fund provides dental benefits to enrolled members and their eligible dependents in accordance with the Welfare Trust Fund Benefits Booklet. The Dental Plan of benefits will pay a benefit up to the maximum allowances as shown in the Schedule of Covered Dental Expenses or the dentist’s actual charges, whichever is less. Dental benefits are subject to a $3,000 calendar year maximum per eligible person. Members have the option to use participating or non-participating providers.
Retirees and their dependents continue to be eligible for these benefits, with the exception of those retirees who, upon their retirement date, have less than one year of active employment in the CALA bargaining unit. Such individuals and their dependents shall only be reimbursed at 50% of the scheduled rate of any dental procedure in this booklet’s schedule.
When Using A Participating Provider: As a member of the CALA Welfare Trust Fund, you have access to the Metrodent Premier Dental Network. When you use a Metrodent Premier Participating Dentist, you will be provided with the services listed in the Schedule of Covered Dental Expenses without any out-of-pocket expenses for covered and reimbursable services. Since usual and customary dental charges generally exceed the dental plan allowances, this represents an overall savings to you in the cost of your dental services.
When Using A Non-Participating Provider: In addition, we offer another alternative, in which the member may use an out-of-network provider and be reimbursed according to a schedule of benefits. Please note that benefits cannot be assigned to non-participating providers. “Checks will be issued to members only”.
For specific questions regarding dental benefits, contact ASO Inc, our Welfare Fund Administrator. You may also visit www.asonet.com for
- Claim Forms
- Directory of Participating Providers
- Review the Status of Pending Dental Claims and your dental benefit history
OPTICAL BENEFITS (Optical Form)
The fund provides optical benefits to members and dependents, again through both participating and non-participating providers. Benefits include prescription glasses, contact lenses, and prescription sunglasses. Our participating providers are part of the Comprehensive Professional System (CPS) network and include several hundred locations in the area. Members may take a claim form to any of the participating opticians or optometrists. The automated number printed on the claim form allows the provider to confirm the member/dependent’s eligibility 24/7.
If you chose to use a nonparticipating optical provider and incur charges for the purchase of eyeglasses or contact lenses while covered by the Fund, you will be reimbursed for an amount equal to the regular and customary charges incurred for such services but not more than $200 per person per 12-month period.
Retirees and their dependents continue to be eligible for these benefits, with the exception of those retirees who, upon their retirement date, have less than one year of active employment in the CALA bargaining unit. Such individuals and their dependents shall only be reimbursed at 50% of the scheduled rate of any optical procedure in this booklet’s schedule.
For specific questions regarding our optical benefits, contact ASO, Inc., our Welfare Fund Administrator at 516.396.5500 or go to www.asonet.com. A list of Comprehensive Professional System optometrists is available from the NYSCALA Welfare Fund Office or by visiting www.cpsoptical.com. When using the CPS website, click on “Find an eyecare professional”; our group is listed under “Citywide Law Assistants”
NOTICE OF PRIVACY PRACTICES (PDF)
This Summary of Privacy Practices summarizes how medical information about you may be used and disclosed by the Citywide Association of Law Assistants of the Civil, Criminal and Family Courts in the City of New York Welfare Trust Fund (“Fund”) or others in the administration of your claims, and certain rights that you have. For a complete, detailed description of all privacy practices, as well as your legal rights, please refer to the enclosed Notice of Privacy Practices.
MEDICAL AND DISABILITY BENEFITS
Sick Leave Bank (Sick Leave Bank Form)
The Union has negotiated a sick leave bank that, in certain circumstances, provides additional paid sick leave to members who have exhausted all their own paid sick and annual leave credits but are unable to return to work due to a medically verifiable disability. To be eligible, an applicant must have been a member of this Association for a minimum of one year. Please contact the Union for further details if you find yourself in this situation.
UNION-PAID SHORT TERM DISABILITY
(Short Term Disability Form)
An additional short term disability benefit is also provided for members who have exhausted all of their annual leave, sick leave, and State-CALA joint sick leave bank entitlement but are still unable to return to work due to a medically verifiable disability. If the applicant is found eligible, the Fund will provide a benefit not to exceed $1,000 per month up to a maximum of six months. Applications for this benefit are processed through ASO, Inc., our Welfare Fund Administrator.
MEMBER-PAID DISABILITY BENEFIT
Members may choose to purchase a disability plan through the Empire State Planning Group, Inc. Contact Jon Schlueter at 877.ESP.4420 for information.
FAMILY AND MEDICAL LEAVE
Members are entitled by law to up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave for specified family or medical purposes, such as the birth or adoption of a child, or to provide care for a spouse, child or parent who is ill, or for the member’s own serious illness. Please note, NYS always exercises its right to require that this time run concurrently with any paid time the member may be using. For further information or for an FMLA leave form, please contact your personnel/payroll office.
All state employees are entitled to up to four (4) hours of excused leave per year for mammography and prostate cancer screenings. This time need NOT be charged against sick leave; it is “excused leave”.
The Union has an arrangement with Inner Imaging, P.C., an affiliate of the Heart Institute at Beth Israel Medical Center, whereby members can advantage of a substantial discount on a variety of testing to determine coronary heart disease and other ailments. The group rate for these four tests is $375. The tests are recommended for men 35 years of age and older and women 40 and older. The regular cost of these tests is $850-$2,000. The offer is for active and retired members as well as spouses.
The four screening tests available are: heart, lungs, abdomen and pelvic area.
Your test results will be completely confidential. The purpose of making this program available is to help you remain healthy. You may call Inner Imaging directly at 212-991-5445 and they will respond to your questions. They are located at 307 East 63rd Street, New York, NY 10065 between 1st and 2nd Avenues (three blocks from Bloomingdales).
WORK LIFE ASSISTANCE PROGRAM
In cooperation with the unions in the UCS, OCA has contracted for a Work-Life Assistance Program through Corporate Counseling Associates. Corporate Counseling provides a free, confidential help program for employees, their families and household members. Their professionals counsel and assist in the areas of emotional well-being, health and wellness, substance abuse, and provide referrals for elder care and child care, educational assistance and financial concerns, among other things. Members may reach Corporate Counseling at
800.833.8707 or at their website (click on Member Log in, company code UCS). If asked, the organization code for the Unified Court System is 4825.
Members are eligible for two types of educational benefits: reimbursement for certain classes through the NYSCALA Welfare Fund; and paid leave time to attend educational conferences and classes, as approved by the Unified Court System.
PAID EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE
(Educational Assistance Claim Form)
Reimbursement is available through the NYSCALA Welfare Fund for certain educational expenses. The fund will reimburse you for CLE and other work-related classes, within specified limits. You will only be reimbursed for the direct cost of the seminar or course alone to the maximum amount set each year by the Trustees. The seminar or course must be related to your Unified Court System bargaining unit job. The amount of the reimbursement will depend on the contributions received by the Fund and the number of claimants in each plan fiscal year. There will be no reimbursement for material, food, transportation, lodging or any other costs not expended for the seminar or course alone. Claims must be submitted within three months of the completion of coursework. For more information and claim forms concerning this benefit, which is only available to employees of the Unified Court System who participate in this Fund, please contact the Fund Office.
PROFESSIONAL AND EDUCATIONAL CONFERENCES
Members may be allowed up to four days leave per year without charge to employees’ leave credits to attend conferences or meetings of recognized professional organizations, to attend continuing legal education programs, or education seminars presented by such organizations or other appropriate organizations or institutions, or to attend educational seminars presented by the Union or the State. Such conferences, continuing legal education programs, or educational seminars must be directly related to the employees’ profession or professional duties. Leave is subject to approval of the Deputy Chief Administrative Judge. Please note: these days are in addition to the two (2) days per year of CLE training that the UCS currently provides. To apply for this benefit, a member must obtain a leave form from his/her personnel/payroll office. For more information on this benefit, contact the Union Office, not the Welfare Fund.
BAR EXAMINATION LEAVE
Unpaid leave may be granted for up to two (2) weeks immediately proceeding the scheduled date of the NYS Bar Examination for employees registered to take the Bar Examination. This is a contractual benefit. Leave forms are available in personnel/payroll offices.
LIFE INSURANCE (Life Insurance Form)
Effective May 1, 2013 all Active and Part-Time Employees (with more than 20 hours per work week) will be covered by a $50,000 Group Basic Term Life and Basic Accidental Death and Dismemberment Insurance Policy underwritten by The Prudential Life Insurance Company of America. This Group Policy coverage will be provided to you at no cost. You must complete the Beneficiary Designation Form, which can be downloaded by clicking on the above link. Once complete, please return to the Union’s Welfare Fund Administrator, ASO, at the address on the form. If you have any questions regarding this new Group Term Life Insurance, please contact Administrative Services Only, Inc at 800.537.1238 ext 9477.
Optional Term Life Insurance Benefit (Form)
We are pleased to announce that, effective September 1, 2010, all Active Full-Time and Part-Time Employees (with more than 20 hours per work week) will have the option of purchasing Optional Term Life Insurance. This benefit would be in addition to the $50,000 Group Basic Term Life and Basic Accidental Death and Dismemberment Insurance Policy (described above) that is provided to you at no cost.
New Members Welcome Packet Cover Letter
Welfare Trust Fund Benefits Book
Welfare Fund Enrollment Form
Adult Dependent Child Certification
Domestic Partner Form