Good News on Litigation of Retiree Health Benefits

Hey all,

I just got this from the legislative team at the Local. The elimination of free retiree health insurance has been held unconstitutional.

sjm

scofil

The Illinois Supreme Court reversed the circuit court’s decision on the change (elimination of free retiree health insurance after 20 years of service or prorated amount) and remanded the case.

From the majority decision:

“For the foregoing reasons, we conclude that the State’s provision of health insurance premium subsidies for retirees is a benefit of membership in a pension or retirement system within the meaning of article XIII, section 5, of the Illinois Constitution, and the General Assembly was precluded from diminishing or impairing that benefit for those employees, annuitants, and survivors whose rights were governed by the version of section 10 of the Group Insurance Act that was in effect prior to the enactment of Public Act 97-695. Accordingly, the circuit court erred in dismissing plaintiffs’ claims that Public Act 97-695 is void and unenforceable under article XIII, section 5.”