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Applying For Benefits

The payment of benefits under this Plan is not automatic. You must apply for benefits on the application form provided by the Trustees. An application form may be obtained from the Fund Office.

Commencement of Benefits

Benefits will be paid effective on the date you indicate on your application if all evidence required for the payment of your benefit including a completed application has been received by the Fund Office.  The Effective Date of Benefits is this date designated by you or established after all information required for payment of benefits has been received by the Plan.

Under the law the Effective Date of your benefits cannot be more than 90 days or less than 30 days after you are provided with an explanation and comparison of the different methods for payment of your benefit under the Plan.  You, and your spouse, if applicable, can waive the 30-day waiting period in writing and receive your benefits earlier.

Your benefits may be paid promptly after a complete application has been filed if your Individual Account is less than $5000 or the benefit is being paid as a Husband and Wife Pension after you have reached age 65.  The law also requires that your benefits must begin no later than April 1st following the calendar year in which you reach the age of 70 ½.

Return to Covered Employment

If you return to employment covered by this Plan, you will again participate in the Fund upon receipt of contributions for your work in Covered Employment.

Appeal of a Denial of Benefits
Review of Fund Office Determinations

In the event your application for benefits is denied in whole or in part, the Fund Office will provide you with a written notice of such denial within 90 days after the Fund Office receives your application unless special circumstances require an extension of time to process your application. If the Fund Office needs more than 90 days to process your application, you will be notified in writing, before the initial 90-day period expires.

The written notice of a denial will set forth the reasons for the denial, references to any pertinent Plan provisions, a description of any additional material or information which might help your claim, and an explanation of why that information is necessary.  In addition, the notice will include a description of the Plan's review procedures and the time limits applicable to such procedures.  If you receive such a notice or if you disagree with a policy, determination or action of the Fund, you may request the Board of Trustees to review your benefit denial or the Fund policy, determination or action with which you disagree.

Your written appeal should state the reasons for your appeal and must be filed within 180 days after receipt of the notice.  This does not mean that you are required to cite all applicable Plan provisions to make "legal" arguments; however, you should state clearly why you believe you are entitled to the benefit claim or why you disagree with a Fund policy, determination or action.  The Trustees can best consider your position if they clearly understand your claims, reasons and/or objections.

Your appeal may be submitted to:

Trustees of the Sprinkler Industry
Supplemental Pension Plan

8000 Corporate Drive
Landover, Maryland 20785

The Board of Trustees or a designated Appeals Committee of the Trustees will review your appeal and issue notification of its decision within 60 days of receipt of your appeal unless special circumstances require more time to review your appeal.  In the event the Board of Trustees or the Appeals Committee needs more time, you will be provided with written notification of the extension within the initial 60-day period.  Such extension will be no longer than 60 additional days.  In reviewing your appeal, the Board of Trustees or the Appeals Committee will take into account all comments, documents, records, and other information you submit, without regard to whether such information was submitted or considered in the Plan's initial determination.

If the Board of Trustees or the Appeals Committee denies your appeal, in whole or in part, the written notice will explain the reasons for the decision, will include specific references to Plan provision on which the decision was based and may indicate if additional information might help your claim.

In connection with an appeal, you may review relevant documents in the Fund Office after making appropriate arrangements or you may request that documents be provided to you.  The Fund may charge you $0.25 per page to provide documents to you, and this amount must be paid in advance.