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Income protection


IBM offers a range of programs to protect your income in case of illness, injury, accident or death. These include service-based disability benefits, unique 401(k) disability protection, life insurance, survivor benefits and optional insurance opportunities. For the most part, you will either be automatically enrolled in these programs or have the opportunity to select the program that best meets your needs when you first join IBM.

Disability benefits
For new employees, the IBM Short-Term Disability (STD) Income Plan provides continuation of your regular salary when you are absent due to illness or injury. For each day you are absent, up to a maximum of 26 weeks in a period of 12 consecutive months, you receive 100% of your regular monthly compensation for the first 13 weeks and 66-2/3% of your regular monthly compensation for the second 13 weeks.

After five years of service, your company-paid short-term disability benefit increases to 100% of pay for 26 weeks.

If you are unable to return to work after 26 weeks, you may be eligible to receive benefits under IBM's service-based Long-Term Disability (LTD) Plan.

LTD benefits can replace a portion of your pay if illness or injury prevents you from returning to work after benefits under the IBM Short-Term Disability Plan expire.

If you have less than five years of IBM service, you will pay the full cost of your LTD benefit on a before-tax basis. You may choose from among three coverage options:

If you choose "No LTD coverage," you will not receive salary continuation benefits beyond those offered by the IBM Short-Term Disability Plan.

If you do not choose an LTD coverage option when you are first eligible to enroll, you will be automatically enrolled in 50% income replacement coverage.

Those who reach five or more years of IBM service will automatically receive company-paid LTD coverage for 50% replacement of regular monthly compensation, with the opportunity to purchase coverage for 66-2/3% replacement of regular monthly compensation.

You will see the LTD options for which you are eligible, along with your personalized rates for each option, when you enroll in IBM benefits on NetBenefits. Rates for LTD insurance vary based on age, salary and years of service. When you buy LTD coverage, your contribution is deducted from your semi-monthly paycheck before taxes are taken out.

Sign up to continue your 401(k) savings if you are disabled and unable to work
Disability insurance replaces part of your working income if you become disabled
but it generally doesn't provide for you to set aside 401(k) savings for your future. That's why IBM offers 401(k) disability protection, a unique form of insurance (separate from IBM's long-term disability coverage) that can help you continue to build savings even if you are unable to work.

With IBM's 401(k) optional disability protection, you choose to purchase coverage for:

You can elect one, all, or any combination of these. This insurance provides coverage in the event that you become disabled in the coming year, and the premiums for coverage are based on your age and on the dollar amount you insure. You can purchase 401(k) disability protection during the annual benefits enrollment period (usually held in the fall). Coverage takes effect on the January 1 following the enrollment period during which you sign up. You must be actively at work on the first work day of the year for new coverage to become effective.

Life insurance, survivor benefits and other options
IBM provides company-paid life Group Life Insurance (GLI) of one times salary, up to a maximum of $1 million. The GLI plan is offered to all IBM employees at no cost, and the value of the premiums for coverage above $50,000 is subject to tax as imputed income.

IBM also provides company-paid Business Travel Accident Insurance to those who are traveling away from their job locations or homes on authorized company business. The plan pays up to five times your annual compensation for death or loss of limb, sight, hearing or speech. You are eligible for this insurance on your first day of IBM employment.

The Survivor Health Benefit provides health care coverage for surviving spouses and eligible surviving dependents of eligible employees who die for up to 36 months under IBM's Transitional Medical Program (TMP).

Optional insurance opportunities include employee-paid Group Universal Life (GUL), which provides coverage of up to eight times your base salary. If you apply within your first 90 days of employment with IBM, depending on the level of coverage you select, you may be eligible to enroll without providing medical evidence or by answering a series of simple health-related questions.

Coverage for spouses up to $200,000 and child rider coverage for $10,000 for each eligible child are available. The GUL program includes optional accidental death and dismemberment insurance, which triples basic coverage in the event of accidental death. For financial planning purposes, GUL offers a capital accumulation feature that allows participants to earn tax-deferred interest on cash contributions made while insured.

IBM's optional Long-Term Care Insurance Program covers a wide range of services associated with chronic illness or disability, such as Alzheimer's disease. Employees have the opportunity to purchase long-term care insurance for themselves and eligible family members.