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Applying For Benefits

To receive your benefit from this Plan, you must file an application for benefits with the Board of Trustees.

Fast Facts:

  • In general, to receive your benefit, you must be eligible for a distribution and you must be considered retired or have incurred a break-in-service and not resumed work in Covered Employment. There are also rules regarding in-service distributions and hardship withdrawals
  • For more information on the above mentioned distributions or when you want to apply for benefits, contact the Fund Office to request an application form. You can also contact the Fund Office in advance to ask what documents you will need to complete the application.
  • If you are a disabled, remember that you cannot apply for your benefit until you have received a disability award from the Social Security Administration.
  • Apply for benefits before April 1 of the year following the year you attain age 70½ to avoid penalties and/or excise taxes.

How to Apply:

The first step in applying for your benefit is to request, in writing or by phone, an Annuity Plan Benefit Application Form from the Fund Office at the address or telephone number below.

International Union of Operating Engineers Local No. 478 Annuity Fund
1965 Dixwell Avenue
Hamden, CT 06514

Phone: 203-288-9261 or toll-free 866-288-9261, ext. 274
E-mail: ann-pen@local478.org

When the Fund Office receives your request, it will send you a self-explanatory application form and an explanation of the possible payment forms.

All questions on the application form must be answered. Also, be sure to sign and date your application form. Should you require any assistance in completing your application form, please contact the Fund Office.
You have the right to study the explanation of payment forms for at least 30 days before your annuity starting date, subject to a 7-day waiver. If you are married and you wish to elect a payment form other than the 50 percent joint-and-survivor annuity, or if you are not married and you wish to elect a payment form other than the life annuity, your election must be made in the 180 days before your annuity starting date to be valid. This is also the period in which you can revoke a previous election).

Items to Submit With Your Application:

You will need to submit the following along with your application, as applicable:

  • Proof of your date of birth; unless you are applying for a hardship distribution
  • If you wish to receive benefits in the form of a joint-and-survivor annuity, provide evidence of your marriage and proof of your spouse's date of birth
  • If you are married and electing a payment form other than the 50 percent joint-and-survivor annuity, a form rejecting the 50 percent joint-and-survivor annuity (acknowledging the effects of such a rejection) and selecting a different payment form, signed by your spouse in the presence of a Plan representative or notary public
  • If you are applying for your benefit because you are a disabled participant, a copy of your disability award from the Social Security Administration
  • Your application cannot be processed until all required documents are received by the Fund Office.

Processing of Your Application

When the Fund Office receives your completed application form and all required supporting documents, it will process your application. The Fund Office normally needs at least one month to process your application, although actual processing time can be shorter, usually between 7 to 10 business days, provided 30 day rule waivers are completed.

Only the Board of Trustees is authorized to approve payment of benefits.

Application for Death Benefits

To receive any death benefits, your surviving spouse or designated beneficiary, as applicable, must file an application for benefits with the Board of Trustees on a form furnished by the Fund Office, along with any required supporting documentation. An application for benefits should be obtained from the Fund Office right after your death so that payments may begin as soon as possible. If you are an unmarried participant and have not designated a beneficiary, please contact the Fund Office for the appropriate designation form.