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MEMBERSHIP AND DUES
EMAIL, WEBSITE ACCESS & NAVIGATION
BENEFITS (please visit the Benefits tab at the top of this page)
No. All LRO officers and directors participate on a volunteer basis with no compensation for their efforts. Monies collected in the form of dues are used to pay expenses directly related to the furtherance of the LRO Mission. The LRO is a non-profit organization and its financial records are audited by the CPA firm of Malesardi, Quackenbush, Swift & Company LLC located in Englewood, NJ.
Why should I become a member of LRO?
In recent years retirees from many American companies have found it important to band together to have a stronger voice with companies where they spent most of their careers. Likewise, a growing number of Lucent retirees have become LRO members in order to have a stronger voice for safeguarding their pension and benefits. In addition, the LRO is attempting to help Alcatel-Lucent return to being the global telecommunications leader it once was. Having a financially strong Lucent is the best way to protect our pension and benefits.
Dues for the LRO is on a calendar year basis. LRO members are encouraged to pay their $25 annual dues each January, or as soon as possible thereafter. Many of our members have made lifetime contributions of $350. If you paid dues last year, you will receive an email reminder on the twelve month anniversary of your payment. You may also pay $100 for a five year membership. Send your check or money order to: LRO Inc, P O Box 1535, Cranford, N.J. 07016; or, if you prefer to pay by credit card through the LRO Website. Please do not send cash.
Why is it necessary to pay an annual $25
membership fee to be an LRO member?
While the annual $25 membership dues or a lifetime $350 contribution is not mandatory to be an LRO member, all Lucent retirees who can afford to pay the dues or make the contribution are requested to do so. We will accept any amount of donation. There must be funds to cover certain expenses associated with operating the organization, such as the LRO website, postage for mailings to retirees, conference calls among LRO leaders to make decisions, occasional trips for officers to meet with Lucent executives, and fees to gain legal advice/support from attorneys. All LRO officers and volunteers provide their time and talents with no financial gain.
The real key to access is your registration id that is in the confirmation email that you receive when you join or change information. If you don't know your registration id, your last name and email address must match the information in our database. In most cases the problem is that the member has changed email addresses. Please use the last email address that you gave us and then update your address. If you continue to have difficulty, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Confirmation emails are sent automatically in all these instances. They are sent to the email address in our record and they are sent from email@example.com. Make sure you have that email address in your address book. Otherwise, your mail program may reject the message or put it in a spam file.
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How can the LRO represent retirees who were
represented by unions prior to retirement?
The LRO in no way presents itself as being an organization that usurps any of the powers that the CWA, IBEW or other unions have to speak for their retirees. The LRO is finding that in most cases it is in concert with the unions on issues important to the well being of retirees. Approximately 13% of our membership is represented by unions.
Does the LRO intend to file any lawsuits against Lucent to restore benefits that have been taken away from retirees?
Legally, the LRO cannot file a class action lawsuit against Lucent. Only retirees who feel they have been harmed by a Lucent decision can be parties in a class action lawsuit. However, the LRO, in certain situations, may assist retirees in dealing with attorneys, developing the case, and providing some financial support toward expenses associated with a lawsuit.
Does the LRO encourage retirees to file lawsuits against Lucent to recover lost benefits, such as the Death
The LRO has been instrumental in bringing together retirees and attorneys who have an interest in exploring the potential of a class action lawsuit to restore the Death Benefit. LRO leaders are interested in having a dialogue with any retiree who is considering legal action against Lucent.
What type of influence does the LRO hope to have
with government officials who create laws and policies that impact
Social Security, Medicare and other retiree benefits?
With the leadership provided by the LRO’s Government Affairs Director, we are staying abreast of legislation in Washington, D.C. and in state capitals. In addition, the rule making activities of government agencies such as the Department of Labor and the Securities and Exchange Commission are being monitored. When necessary, we have asked our members to write their government leaders to support or oppose proposed legislation or policies. In addition, we regularly partner with other retiree organizations to take stands on issues. When we tell an elected official that the LRO addresses the interests of 127,000 retirees, their spouses and dependents, they tend to pay attention.
In a letter dated January 2, 2003, Lucent notified U.S. management retirees—regardless of their retirement date—that their Death Benefit would be eliminated on February 1, 2003. The Death Benefit was, to quote the pension plan,
"In the event of death by accident, the maximum Accident Death Benefit specified in Paragraph 1 of this Section, or in the event of death by sickness, the maximum Sickness Death Benefit specified in Paragraph 2 of this Section, shall be paid, subject to the provisions of Subparagraph (c) of this Paragraph 4, to the spouse of the deceased employee if living with him at the time of his death, or to the unmarried child or children of the deceased employee under the age of 23 years. . . or a dependent parent. . ."
Retirees currently still have their Life Insurance Benefit. The Life Insurance Benefit is the equivalent to one year’s salary at the time of retirement until age 65. Thereafter, the Life Insurance Benefit declines 10 percent per year until age 70 when it stabilizes at 50 percent of the annual salary.
Some American cities are placing its employees under health care plans that allow participants’ prescriptions to be filled cheaper via mail order from Canadian pharmacies. Why doesn’t Lucent offer this option to its retirees?
Lucent’s response to this question is that it is still illegal to import prescription drugs from Canada. Individuals may do it voluntarily, but as a company, Lucent says it can’t condone it.
As a way to reduce its health care costs, why doesn’t Lucent offer its retirees a choice of: (a) high premiums and low copays, or (b) low premiums and high copays? This question is based on the premise that copays are so cheap with a 3rd party paying most of the bill that people excessively and unnecessarily visit doctors.
Lucent says it is creating alternatives for retirees, but not exactly as the one in this question. Lucent acknowledges that when people have a greater financial interest, they are more attentive to how they spend money. Lucent maintains it is aware of the motivating power of the pocketbook and takes that into consideration in the design of its health care plan for retirees.
Why should I consider using a generic drug when my doctor has prescribed a specific name brand drug?
Since the LRO is always seeking ways to reduce health care costs without impacting the quality of care that retirees receive, we asked Lucent and Hewitt Associates to provide us information on the issue of generic drugs. Please click here and here to read two very informative documents about generic drugs.
A few members have asked about viruses
in e-mails with the LRO return address.
Click here for the full story.
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What happens to my pension if Alcatel-Lucent
can not afford the pension plan?
This question is explained in the Benefits tab on our website. Go to Benefits Advice to LRO Members, and look for Pensions.
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