I've already posted on the General Secretary nominations and on the arrangements for Rules Conference. Below are summaries of the decisions on Waiting/Qualification Periods and on elections to the Executive Council, as well as an update on the position of Retired Members.
a) Dispute/victimisation - 13 weeks full contributions (may be waived at EC/GS discretion)
b) Legal services - Immediate (and all retirees and non working dependents eligible) for personal injury claims. 13 weeks full contributions for all other Legal services (may be waived at EC/GS discretion). Members off work and pursuing a Personal Injury or other legal claim through the Union must continue to contribute at the rate appropriate to their employment status (e.g. at the Special Discounted Rate if unemployed) in order for their claim to continue to be pursued.
c) Incapacity/maternity/paternity/adoption/fixed sums - 26 weeks full contributions
d) Funeral - 26 weeks full contributions
e) Convalescence - 26 weeks full contributions
f) Driver Care - as per current arrangements
Election of Executive Council 2011-2014
- Independent Scrutineer: Electoral Reform Services
- Returning Officer: General Secretary
- Election Commissioner: Professor Keith Ewing
- 4th January 2011: Despatch of nomination forms
- 10th January - 7th February 2011: Nomination meetings
- 14th February 2011: Last date for receipt of nominations
- 21st February 2011: Last date for acceptance of nomination and receipt of election address
- 25th March 2011: Voting papers despatched by independent scrutineer
- 15th April 2011: Last date for voting paper to be returned to the independent scrutineer
- 16-17th April 2011: Count
Retired and Permanently Disabled Members
These members have discounted contribution rates. The notions of "active" and "non active" retired members had never been approved, though it was widely (and confusingly) communicated. Below is the correct position, documenting the decision of the July EC meeting.
In order to be a retired or permanently disabled member, the qualifications are:
1) Existing Retired Members
All retired and permanently disabled members from both Sections as at 31st July 2010 are "grandfathered" in all respects - e.g., in terms of contributions, benefits and eligibility to hold office in the Retired Members and Branch structures (subject to rule).
2) New Retired Members
In order for a member to be eligible for retired membership (retiring on or after 1st August 2010), he or she must meet the following criteria:
- Be permanently retired from work;
- Not employed or seeking employment;
- Not claiming Job Seekers Allowance;
- Have been a member of the Union for at least five years at the full or part time rate.
In order for a member to be eligible for the retired rate because of permanent disablement (becoming permanently disabled on or after 1st August 2010), he or she must be in receipt of State incapacity benefit or equivalent benefits/pension.
If a member returns to work, then they must return to paying contributions at the rate appropriate to the employment status (e.g., full or part time).
All members who become retired members on or after 1st August 2010 (including those who are permanently prevented from work due to disability) are not entitled to receive any ancillary benefit, but are entitled to Funeral Benefit.
All members who became retired members on or after 1st August 2010 (including those who are permanently prevented from work due to disability) are entitled to receive all non ancillary benefits, such as those related to legal support for personal injury, free wills, advice on State benefit etc, with the exception that such members will not be eligible to receive any benefit or support relating to employment.
Funeral Benefit is calculated based on the members' service (full time, part time at 50%) up to the point of the member becoming retired or permanently disabled. Service whilst paying the Special Discounted Rate (e.g. unemployed, retired) does not count. Service for the purpose of calculating Funeral Benefit for former Amicus Section members accrues from 1.9.09. Funeral Benefit for all members will be the rate prevailing at thetime of death (but still based upon the member's service at the time of becoming retired/permanently disabled and subject to the prevailing maximums).
Members retiring (or becoming permanently disabled) on or after 1st August 2010 with less than 20 years of membership must pay the special discounted rate of £12.96 per year (25p per week). In order to be cost effective, this should be paid, where possible, annually by direct debit.
Members retiring (or becoming permanently disabled) on or after 1st August 2010 with more than 20 years of full paying membership shall be entitled to free membership. (Members who retire with less than 20 years of fully paying membership will not qualify for free retired membership when they have paid the balance of years necessary to meet the 20 year eligibility for free membership at the retired member rate). The benefits and eligibility shall otherwise be the same as for those members paying the retired membership rate. Any members who retired or became permanently disabled on or after 1st September 2009 with more than 20 years full paying membership and paid contributions based upon the "Active" retiree notion shall be entitled to a refund of any such contributions.