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Teamsters: Get the Collective Bargaining Benefits You’re Entitled To

by Mark Glen Sokoloff

Teamster railroad union members built America and continue to be essential in keeping both commuter and freight locomotives traveling throughout the U.S.A. and parts of Canada. Due to the physical nature of these jobs, they can be dangerous and are prone to causing injury. If you are a railroad worker who has recently sustained a debilitating injury, you may be overwhelmed by the amount of paperwork you must complete to even qualify for a temporary disability. It can be difficult to navigate the forms involved when you have been injured on the job. However, it is crucial for you to ensure you have filled out all of the relevant forms, as you can miss out on significant benefits if your paperwork is incomplete or untimely filed.

Historically, the Teamsters Union represents the most physically demanding jobs, such as railroad locomotive engineers and the individuals with the skills to operate heavy equipment. The injuries that are common for these types of positions are often very serious and can be long lasting or permanent. Even if you are a teamster who has not sustained an injury, it is still important to store the disability/wage forms we will give to you today. As someone who has a high-risk job, you never know what could happen during the course of your work, and you and your family should always be prepared.

If you suffer an injury on the job, you are required to file for Sickness/Accident Compensation using the RRB form (attached herein). You must file this form within 30 days of your accident. Once you start receiving your RRB benefits, in lieu of your normal company pay, you must then fill out the Aetna Supplemental Disability Sickness Benefit. Under the Teamster Union collective bargaining agreement, Aetna has to supplement your income. However, the Aetna form must be filed within 60 days of your accident, or you will lose the opportunity to access this additional benefit.

No matter what railroad you work for – ConRail, Norfolk Southern Railway, Union Pacific, AMTRAK, LIRR, Metro North, C.S.X., P.A.T.H., New Jersey Transit – or any other railroad across the country, these forms will apply for your disability benefits. For your convenience, you can find the Aetna Supplemental Income form here, as well as the referenced RRB form here. We have also linked the RRB Disability Annuity form as well as the MTA Disability Pension forms, for those folks that are forced to confront an occupational disability.

The attorneys at Hach & Rose are well versed in handling railroad disability grievances and claims, including the associated F.E.L.A., Locomotive Safety Act and U.S. Railway Safety Act litigation on behalf of injured railroad workers. The firm recently achieved a $1.3 million jury verdict for a Master Mechanic who was injured while operating a shuttle wagon that derailed as a result of a failed hydraulic system. Other recent achievements by the firm on behalf of our clients are a $13 million jury verdict for an operating engineer, and a $2.5 million settlement for an injured laborer. If you were injured during the course of your work, you may be entitled to additional compensation. Hach & Rose’s Railroad Labor Department specializes in F.E.L.A. litigation involving disabled railroad workers and has former designated union counsel on board. Call us today at (646) 798-1382 for a free review of your case.

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