The UAW Legal Services Plan is the largest pre-paid legal services program in the country.
Plan staff attorneys are represented by AFSCME and support staff are represented by OPEIU.

 



The Plan

UAW Legal Services Plan (the Plan) is a program established and operated for the sole purpose of providing personal legal services to eligible Participants for legal problems arising out of the laws in the United States or Canada. The Plan cannot open new cases for members after December 31, 2013, however, it will complete those cases open on or before that date. The following information provides you with the basics of the programs prior to December 31, 2013.

General Questions About the Plan 
Who is covered under the Plan?
Approximately 600,000 employees and retirees of various companies represented by the UAW have negotiated a legal service benefit. Each group is a legally separate organization, but all are jointly operated:

      UAW-GM Legal Services Plan
      UAW-Ford Legal Services Plan
      UAW-Chrysler LLC Legal Services Plan
      UAW-Allison Transmission Legal Services Plan
      UAW-American Axle Legal Services Plan
      UAW-Employees Legal Services Plan
      UAW-Staff Legal Services Plan
            
      

How is the Plan financed?
Plan benefits and administrative expenses are paid by various trust funds established for each separate organization. The amount contributed by the companies is established through collective bargaining at a very low cost per member.

Who Operates the Plan?
The Plan is operated under the authority of the Administrative Committees of each separate organization. The Committee consists of three persons appointed by the Company and three persons appointed by the Union and a Chair selected by both. The Committee has selected a Director who is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the Plan.

Who is eligible for Plan benefits?
Eligible participants include:

Employees. Individuals who have 90 days of seniority and who are members of the bargaining unit. Eligibility ends if you have been continuously laid off for more than 24 months.

Retirees: Individuals who were hourly workers represented by the Union and who worked for one of the listed companies and retired with a UAW-Company Pension plan. Persons receiving deferred pension plans are not eligible.

Spouses. Spouses of active workers or retirees.

Surviving spouses: Spouses receiving surviving spouse, transition, bridge, widow’s or health insurance benefits under the Pension of Insurance Plans.

Other Dependents. Any person who resides with the employee or retiree and is dependent on the employee or retiree according to the Internal Revenue Code.

Same Sex Domestic Partners: This includes same sex partners of workers or retirees if he or she is receiving health insurance coverage from the Company.

What benefits are offered to Plan Participants?
A large variety of legal problems—such as those involving personal debt problems, consumer fraud, foreclosure of your residence, other real estate relating to your home, wills, and probate of estates are fully covered. Other problems are covered only for assistance that can be provided in the office—advice, negotiation or drafting of documents. Some problems must be referred to private attorneys, called cooperating attorneys, who will charge you a reduced rate. Some legal problems that relate to a client’s business, rental property or disputes with their employer or Union are excluded.

What matters are entitled to full legal services?
  • Suspension or termination of Social Security disability benefits;
  • Guardianships;
  • Probate proceedings, if the Participant is acting as the Executor or Personal representative and is an heir or beneficiary of the estate;
  • Wills, codicils and trusts;
  • Adoption or legitimization of a child;
  • Name changes;
  • Defense of a collection action on personal or family debts;
  • Defense of garnishments;
  • Repossession and replevin;
  • Personal bankruptcy;
  • Consumer complaints and warranty;
  • Contracts for goods or services;
  • Insurance claims or loss of coverage;
  • IRS audits and administrative proceedings;
  • Tenant representation and leases for tenants on personal or family residence;
  • Property damage, real and personal;
  • Real estate matters relating to family or personal residence, including purchase, sale, closings, mortgage, foreclosure, property tax assessments, boundary dispute, title dispute, zoning and eminent domain;
  • Medicare appeals;
  • Uncontested divorces, alimony, non-support and custody matters—only in jurisdictions where attorneys are not required to appear to finalize proceedings.

What matters are entitled to the ‘Office Work’ benefit?
  • Social security claims
  • Veteran Benefits claims;
  • Food stamps or other public assistance claims;
  • Moving violations;
  • Other traffic offenses;
  • Misdemeanors;
  • Juvenile offenses;
  • Contested divorce, separation, alimony, child support, dissolution or other family matters;
  • Naturalization, immigration and deportation;
  • • Special family benefit to prepare for the death or incapacity of a participant’s parent in the following legal areas: Wills, deeds, powers of attorney, real estate, guardianship and probate;

What benefits can be provided as part of the "Office Work" benefit?
Examples include:
  • Preparation of legal documents
  • Legal research
  • Factual evaluations;
  • Document review;
  • Telephone calls;
  • Correspondence;
  • Self-help counseling if appropriate.

Are there exclusions from Plan benefits?
Yes. Examples include:
  • Legal services associated with a Participant’s business or rental property;
  • Legal services that are against the member’s employer, or the employer's subsidiaries, dealers or officers or agents;
  • Legal services that are against the Union, its subordinates affiliated bodies, officers, or agents;
  • Fines and penalties;
  • Non-legal costs attendant with the sale or purchase of real estate;
  • Representation of a lender in a real estate matter;
  • Workers compensation or Unemployment benefits involving the member’s employer;
  • Any dispute involving the Plan;
  • Any bankruptcy that would result in a discharge of a debt to the Member’s employer, to the Union or any benefits;

How do I obtain legal services?
If you believe that you are an eligible participant of a legal Plan and if you have a legal problem, you should contact one of the Plan offices near you (see list of offices in "Locations") or if no office is near you, then the National office in Detroit (see "Locations"). When you contact the office, you will be asked for the Member's name and social security number and eligibility will be verified.   The member is the active worker or retiree.   Once eligibility is verified, a case will be opened for you and you will be informed of the coverage level.   If you are in a staff office area, under most circumstances, your case will be assigned to an attorney and you will have an opportunity to talk to that attorney.   If you do not live in a staff area or if your legal matter is not fully covered, you will be referred to a cooperating attorney who can assist you.

 
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