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Content provided by the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance
57.001 Social Insurance for Railroad Workers

FEDERAL AGENCY:

RAILROAD RETIREMENT BOARD

AUTHORIZATION:

Social Security Act of 1935, as amended, Public Law 74-271, 49 Stat. 620, 42 U.S.C. 7, Subchapter 2; Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act, as amended, Public Law 75-722, 52 Stat. 1094, 45 U.S.C. 351-367; Railroad Retirement Act of 1974, as amended, Public Law 93-445, 88 Stat. 1305, 45 U.S.C. 231-231u.
OBJECTIVES: Click here for help!
To pay rail social security, rail industry pensions, Federal windfall benefits, supplemental annuities, permanent and occupational disability, and sickness and unemployment benefits to workers and their families.

TYPES OF ASSISTANCE:

Direct Payments with Unrestricted Use.
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USES AND USE RESTRICTIONS:

Under the provisions of the Railroad Retirement Act and the Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act, benefits are provided for: (1) workers who retire because of age or disability; including supplemental annuities for long-service employees; (2) eligible spouses and divorced spouses of retired employees; (3) surviving widows, widowers, divorced spouses, children, and dependent parents of deceased employees; (4) unemployed workers; and (5) workers who are sick or injured. In addition, the Railroad Retirement Board participates in the administration of the Federal medical health insurance program for the aged and the disabled, which covers railroad retirement beneficiaries on the same basis as other eligible persons.

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS:

Applicant Eligibility:   Under the Railroad Retirement Act, for employee, spouse and survivor benefits the employee must have had 10 or more years of railroad service or, for annuities beginning January 2002 or later, 5 years of railroad service rendered after 1995. For survivors to be eligible for benefits, the employee must also have been insured at death. Under the Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act, an employee must have earned at least $2,512.50 in railroad wages in calendar year 2000, $2,625.00 in calendar year 2001, and $2,750.00 in calendar year 2002 (counting no more than $1005 in any month in calendar year 2000, $1,050 in calendar year 2001 and $1,100 in calendar year 2002) and, if a new employee, must have worked for a railroad at least 5 months in a calendar (base) year to be a qualified employee in the applicable benefit year.

Beneficiary Eligibility:   Individuals, families, pension recipients.

Credentials/Documentation:   Proof of age for retirement benefits; proof of marriage for spouse's or survivor's benefits; medical evidence for disability or sickness benefits; registration for proof of unemployment; proof of relationship; proof of military service; and other proofs as required by law.

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APPLICATION AND AWARD PROCESS:
Pre-application Coordination:   None. This program is excluded from coverage under E.O. 12372.

Application Procedure:   Application for retirement, disability, survivor, unemployment or sickness benefits should be made to any office of the Railroad Retirement Board.

Award Procedure:   The Office of Programs makes awards under the Railroad Retirement Act and the Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act.

Deadlines:   Benefits not payable earlier than specified period prior to application, varying with type of benefits; insurance lump-sum death payments application deadline is two years after employee's death. Applicants may contact any Railroad Retirement Board Office to obtain information relative to a specific type of benefit administered under the Railroad Retirement Act or the Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time:   Varies depending upon complexity of claim.

Appeals:   Initial appeals are made to the Bureau of Hearings and Appeals. Subsequent appeals from initial determinations may be made to the Board and ultimately to the U.S. Court of Appeals.

Renewals:   Not applicable.

ASSISTANCE CONSIDERATIONS:

Formula and Matching Requirements:   Not applicable.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance:   Not applicable.

POST ASSISTANCE REQUIREMENTS:

Reports:   Various conditions explained on the benefit application certification form as affecting eligibility, e.g., earnings, marriage, divorce, recovery from disability, return to employer service, should be reported.

Audits:   Not applicable.

Records:   Not applicable.

FINANCIAL INFORMATION:

Account Identification:   60-8011-0-7-601; 60-8010-0-7-601; 60-8012-0-7-601; 60-8051-0-7-603; 60-0111-0-1-601; 60-0113-0-1-601.

Obligations:   (Benefit Payments) FY 01 $8,537,000,000; FY 02 est $8,758,000,000; and FY 03 est $8,912,000,000.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance:  
(1) Employee initially awarded age annuities-monthly maximum $4,818, average $2,663; (2) employee disability-monthly maximum $4,783, average $2,673; (3) employee supplemental annuities-monthly maximum $70, average $42; (4) married spouse benefits-monthly maximum $2,302, average $1,000; (5) widows and widowers-monthly maximum $4,599, average $1,596; (6) widowed mothers and fathers-monthly maximum $4,063, average $1,853; (7) children-monthly maximum $2,666, average $1,066; (8) unemployment and sickness-weekly maximum for benefit year 2016-2017 $336, expected average $335.

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PROGRAM ACCOMPLISHMENTS:
In fiscal year 2001, benefits were paid to an estimated 737,000 retirees and their families, survivors of deceased railroad workers, and unemployed or sick railroad workers. Under the provisions of the Railroad Retirement Act, in fiscal year 2001, there were 38,441 applications for benefits and 34,655 awards made. Under the provisions of the Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act, in benefit year 2000 to 2001, there were 48,769 applications for benefits and 38,351 beneficiaries paid.

REGULATIONS, GUIDELINES, AND LITERATURE:

A series of free leaflets is available from the Office of Public Affairs, Railroad Retirement Board.

INFORMATION CONTACTS:

Regional or Local Office:   See Regional Agency Offices. The Railroad Retirement Board has 53 local offices around the country. To contact or obtain the address for the nearest office, call (1-877) 772-5772.

Headquarters Office:   Railroad Retirement Board 844 North Rush Street, Chicago, Illinois 60611-2092 Email: opa@rrb.gov Phone: (312) 751-4777 Fax: (312) 751-7154

Web Site Address:  
http://www.rrb.gov

EXAMPLES OF FUNDED PROJECTS:

Not applicable.

CRITERIA FOR SELECTING PROPOSALS:

Not applicable.

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