What The 2020 CBA Means For Retired NFL Players

The NFL Players Association announced yesterday that its members have approved a new CBA with the League.

The new CBA contains increased and new benefits for vested alumni including increased pensions, a reduction to three seasons for pension vesting, and a new Health Reimbursement Account.

Below are excerpts from new CBA that impact former NFL Players. Please take the time to fully review. If you have any questions please contact memberservice@nflalumni.org.

ARTICLE 40
ACCESS TO PERSONNEL AND MEDICAL RECORDS
Section 1. Personnel Records:
Each Club will within seven (7) days after a written request of any player, permit the player to inspect and copy his individual personnel file and any other document which objectively relates to his performance and which in turn relates to any grievance. Each Club may, at its discretion, exclude from an individual player’s personnel file attorney-client privileged material, subjective coaching and scouting reports, or any other subjective material.  This Section 1 shall not affect the player’s rights under any grievance procedure.
Section 2. Medical Records:  
(a)  A player may examine his medical and trainers’ records in the possession of the Club or Club physician two times each year, once during the preseason and again after the regular season. Any player or former player may obtain a copy of his medical or trainer’s records without charge upon request during the offseason. A player’s personal physician may, upon presentation to the Club physician of an authorization signed by the player, inspect the player’s medical and trainers’ records in consultation with the Club physician or have copies of such medical and trainers’ records forwarded to such player’s personal physician. Upon request by the player or player’s personal physician as described in this Subsection, such records shall be provided as soon as possible, and in no event later than seven (7) business days from the receipt of the request. 
(b) To the extent that a player’s medical or trainer records contain information that is subject to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (as amended and as implemented through regulations) or other applicable laws, nothing in this Section shall be construed to restrict a player’s right to access his information under such laws.
(c) All NFL Players and prospective players shall be required to execute the medical record authorizations attached hereto as Appendix S every year.  Players not yet employed by an NFL Club should execute these authorizations at the initiation of their employment.  Players who are already on a Club roster should execute these authorizations as part of their annual preseason physical examination.  
Section 3. Electronic Medical Record System:
The NFL shall maintain an online, 24 hour electronic medical record system. Starting with the 2021 NFL Season, in order to ensure a comprehensive medical record exists for every player, including records related to Article 41, each Club shall provide a summary listing taken from the player’s Electronic Medical Record (“EMR”) of every Club physician-diagnosed medical condition evaluated and treated by any Club physician during the immediately preceding season and any Club physician-prescribed medications given during the immediately preceding season (the “Summary Report”)  This Summary Report shall be provided, in written and electronic formats to the player’s home and e-mail addresses contained within the EMR, within 30 days of the last game of the Club’s season, for all players who were on its roster at any time during that season.  The Summary Report will contain the information in Appendix BB (with non-material modifications to the format as necessary). Under no circumstances will a Club be responsible for including any diagnosed medical conditions evaluated and treated by or under the direction of another Club’s physician in the Summary Report.  The Summary Report will be generated solely based on the information contained in the Electronic Medical Records and may include non-workplace conditions, illnesses and injuries suffered by the players outside the course and scope of employment.  The Club may elect to include additional medical information in its discretion. The NFL will continue to cause the EMR System to be republished within 30 days after final roster reduction, and within 30 days after the Super Bowl.  The NFLPA is responsible for maintaining accurate and current email addresses and mobile telephone numbers for the purposes of this Article. Players shall have the right to authorize the Club to provide a copy of the Summary Report to the NFLPA.  The parties will agree on a reasonable process to obtain authorization from players to share a copy of the Summary Report with the NFLPA.

ARTICLE 52
PLAYER BENEFIT COSTS
Section 1. General Right of Reduction:  The NFLPA will have the unilateral right to reduce or freeze each separate and individual Player Benefit Cost and the applicable benefit, with the exception of (1) benefits and contributions under the Bert Bell/Pete Rozelle NFL Player Retirement Plan (the “Retirement Plan”), (2) benefits under the NFL Player Disability & Neurocognitive Benefit Plan (the “Disability Plan”), and (3) postseason pay (although the NFLPA will have the unilateral right to direct that postseason pay will not be increased), in a League Year, if such right is exercised on or before April 15 of such League Year. However, such action cannot reduce total Player Benefit Costs below 5% of Projected AR, as defined in Article 12 and Player Benefit Costs required by law cannot be reduced.
Section 2. Right of Restoration: Each separate and individual Benefit reduced or frozen pursuant to Section 1 above may be unilaterally restored by the NFLPA in whole or in part for a League Year, if such right is exercised on or before April 15 of such League Year. Each Benefit may be restored up to but not in excess of its prescribed level for that League Year in this Agreement. 
Section 3. Resolution of Disputes: In the event the NFLPA and the NFL are unable to agree to Projected Benefits for the League Year for which the Salary Cap is being set, the parties will proceed immediately to mediation and binding arbitration on an expedited schedule so that all such differences are resolved in time for the timely issuance of the Special Purpose Letter for that League Year. Such mediation and binding arbitration will be presided over by the Benefit Arbitrator pursuant to the following procedure: 
(a)          The parties will submit in writing to the Benefit Arbitrator their respective calculations of Projected Benefits for the forthcoming year.  
(b)          Thereafter, the Benefit Arbitrator, upon receipt of such submissions by each party, will immediately convene an expedited hearing at the site of his or her selection. Such hearing will proceed for no more than three days, the first day of which will include whatever mediation efforts the Benefit Arbitrator deems appropriate; provided, however, that such mediation will not be binding on the parties. 
(c)           As soon as possible following the closing of such expedited hearing, the Benefit Arbitrator will render his or her decision, which will be final and binding on the parties. Post-hearing briefs following the close of such hearing will be permitted only if requested by the Benefit Arbitrator, and any post-hearing brief so requested must be submitted within one (1) week, with no extension. The parties intend that post-hearing briefs will be requested only in unusual circumstances. In no event will the Benefit Arbitrator’s decision be rendered and delivered to the parties any later than five (5) days prior to the scheduled issuance of the Special Purpose Letter. Section 4. Limitations on Contributions:  
(a)           No NFL Club shall have any obligation, directly or indirectly, to contribute to the Second Career Savings Plan, the Player Annuity Program, the Capital Accumulation
Plan, the Severance Pay Plan, the NFL Player Disability & Neurocognitive Benefit Plan, (except as provided in Article 60, Section 2), the Gene Upshaw Health Reimbursement Account, the Workers’ Compensation Time Offset Fund, the Performance Based Pool, the Tuition Assistance Plan, the NFL Player Insurance Plan, the Former Player Life Improvement Plan, or the Player Long-Term Care Insurance Plan (individually, a “Player Benefit Arrangement”) with respect to any year following expiration of this Agreement except to the extent required by the Internal Revenue Code or other applicable laws except to the extent preempted by ERISA. Each Player Benefit Arrangement shall provide, or be amended to the extent necessary to provide, for the prevention of any employer-provided benefit from accruing or being otherwise credited or earned thereunder with respect to any year following the expiration of this Agreement, and to provide that no expense incurred in maintaining the Player Benefit Arrangement in a year following the expiration of this Agreement shall be paid, directly or indirectly, by an NFL Club except to the extent required by law, or as otherwise provided in this Agreement.  
(b)          For the duration of this Agreement, the parties will amend all benefit plans qualified under Section 401(a) of the Internal Revenue Code as necessary to continue to ensure that an NFL Club will only be required to make contributions to any qualified benefit plan to the extent that such contributions are deductible when made under the limits of Section 404(a) of the Internal Revenue. 
Section 5. Timing:  Player Benefit Costs for the Retirement Plan, the Second Career Savings Plan, the NFL Player Disability & Neurocognitive Benefit Plan, the Capital Accumulation Plan, the Player Annuity Program, the Tuition Assistance Plan, the Gene Upshaw Health Reimbursement Account, the 88 Benefit Plan, the Player Insurance Plan, the Former Player Life Improvement Plan, the Player Long Term Care Insurance Plan, and the NFL Player Disability & Neurocognitive Benefit Plan, will be deemed to be made in a League Year for purposes of this Agreement if made in the Plan Year beginning in the same calendar year as the beginning of such League Year.

ARTICLE 53
RETIREMENT PLAN
Section 1. Maintenance and Definitions:  The current terms of the Bert Bell/Pete Rozelle NFL Player Retirement Plan (the “Retirement Plan” ), a jointly administered TaftHartley multiemployer pension plan, will be continued and maintained in full force and effect during the term of this Agreement, except as amended below, but no further benefits will accrue except as provided in Section 3 of this Article. The Retirement Plan, and all past and future amendments thereto as adopted in accordance with the terms of that Plan, are incorporated by reference and made a part of this Agreement; provided, however, that the terms used in such Plan and the definitions of such terms are applicable only to such Plan and shall have no applicability to this Agreement unless the context of this Agreement specifically mandates the use of such terms.
Section 2. Contributions:  An annual contribution will continue to be made to the Retirement Plan on behalf of each NFL Club as actuarially determined to be necessary to fund the benefits provided in this Article, based on the actuarial assumptions and methods contained in Appendix N. No provision of this Agreement will eliminate or reduce the obligation to provide the benefits described in this Article, or eliminate or reduce the obligations of the NFL Clubs to fund retirement benefits. Contributions will be used exclusively to provide retirement benefits and to pay expenses. Contributions for a Plan Year will be made on or before the end of each Plan Year. Benefit Credits, including Legacy Credits and Special Credits, for future seasons and benefits subject to Retirement Board approval, if any, for Plan Years beginning on and after the League Year ending in 2031 will be determined pursuant to future collective bargaining agreements, if any. If Benefit Credits, Legacy Credits and Special Credits are discontinued after the League Year ending in 2031, the NFL Clubs shall continue to make annual contributions in the amount necessary to satisfy the requirements of ERISA § 302 unless and until the Clubs elect to withdraw under ERISA § 4203. It will be the duty of the Retirement Board of the Retirement Plan to pursue all available legal remedies in an effort to assure timely payment of all contributions due under this Agreement.  
Section 3. Pension Enhancements:  Effective for payments on and after April 1, 2020, the parties will amend Section 4.1(a), 4.1(b) and 4A.1 of the Retirement Plan to provide the increased Credits described below for the indicated Credited Seasons. For Players eligible for a Legacy Credit for one or more Credited Seasons, the 2020 Credits shall be treated as a Legacy Credit for such Credited Season(s). In all other circumstances, the 2020 Credits shall be treated as Benefit Credits.  Notwithstanding the two prior sentences, the 2020 Credits set forth below shall not be included in Disability Credits as defined in the Retirement Plan.

Benefits for affected players in pay status shall be proportionately increased based on the new and prior Total Credits.
Section 4.  2025 Increase to Pre-2012 Credited Season Credits.  If the annualized increase to the AR is 4% or more over the period beginning on April 1, 2020 and ending on March 31, 2025, then the Retirement Plan shall be amended to increase the 2020 Credits by $50 for each of the pre-2012 Credited Seasons set forth in Section 3 of this Article; or if the annualized increase to the AR is less than 4% over the period beginning on April 1, 2020 and ending on March 31, 2025, the Retirement Plan shall be amended to increase the 2020 Credits by $25 for each of the pre-2012 Credited Seasons set forth in Section 3 of this Article.
Benefits for affected players in pay status shall be proportionately increased based on the new and prior Total Credits.  
Section 5. Vesting Requirements:  Effective for payments commencing on or after April 1, 2020, the parties shall amend Section 1.47 of the Retirement Plan so that all players alive on the effective date of this agreement with three or more Credited Seasons, and who were not previously Vested under the Retirement Plan, shall be a Vested Player under only the Retirement Plan, and only for purposes of Article 4 and Section 7.3 of the Retirement Plan. For the avoidance of doubt, a player vesting under this Section 5 shall not be a Vested Player for purposes of any other employee benefit plan under this Agreement. A Player vested under this Section 5 shall not be eligible for the Life only pension with Social Security adjustment under Section 4.4(b)(4) of the Retirement Plan and the Early Payment Benefit under Section 4.5 of the Retirement Plan.  The Retirement Plan shall be further amended such that: (i) a Player who vests under the Retirement Plan solely due to this Section 5 of Article 53 (“Section 5”) of this Agreement shall receive a Benefit Credit of $550 per Credited Season but will not be eligible for either a Legacy Credit, Special Credit or 2020 Credit (except for the increase under Section 4); (ii) the benefit of a Player vested solely due to this Section 5 and who is age 65 or older on April 1, 2020, shall commence as of April 1, 2020, (iii) the benefit of all other players vested solely due to this Section 5 shall commence in accordance with the existing terms of the Retirement Plan; and (iv) a player’s benefit commencing after the later of April 1, 2020 or his Normal Retirement Date shall be actuarially increased.  Section 6. Death Benefits: Effective for payments on or after April 1, 2020, the parties will amend Section 7.2 of the Retirement Plan to: (i) increase the first forty-eight-month period following the player’s death to the first sixty-month period following the player’s death; (ii) increase the amount of the benefit for the first sixty-month-period following the player’s death to $13,000 (to be increased to $15,000 effective April 1, 2025); and (iii) increase the minimum benefit following the first sixty-month-period after the player’s death to $6,000. If such increases to the death benefit affect the Retirement Plan’s qualified status, the increases to this death benefit under this Section 6 shall be paid from another employee benefit plan under this Agreement, to be agreed upon by the parties. The Retirement Plan shall be further amended to add a section 7.7 as follows: “If at the time of his death a player has no surviving spouse or child(ren), his death benefit under Section 7.2, subject to all other terms and requirements under this Article 7, shall be payable for a period of 60 months split equally between his parents (or wholly to one parent if only one living parent), not including step-parents, and if no living parent, split equally among his living sibling or siblings.”

ARTICLE 54
SECOND CAREER SAVINGS PLAN
Section 1. Maintenance:  The current terms of the NFL Player Second Career Savings Plan (“Savings Plan”), a jointly administered Taft-Hartley multiemployer defined contribution plan, and all past and future amendments thereto as adopted in accordance with the terms of that Plan, are incorporated by reference and made a part of this Agreement, and shall continue in effect except as amended below; provided, however, that the terms used in such Plan and the definitions of such terms are applicable only to such Plan and shall have no applicability to this Agreement unless the context of this Agreement specifically mandates the use of such terms. Such Plan will be continued and maintained in full force and effect during the term of this Agreement. 
Section 2. Contributions:   The current terms of the NFL Player Second Career Savings Plan (“Savings Plan”), a jointly administered Taft-Hartley multiemployer defined contribution plan, and all past and future amendments thereto as adopted in accordance with the terms of that Plan, are incorporated by reference and made a part of this Agreement, and shall continue in effect except as amended below; provided, however, that the terms used in such Plan and the definitions of such terms are applicable only to such Plan and shall have no applicability to this Agreement unless the context of this Agreement specifically mandates the use of such terms. Such Plan will be continued and maintained in full force and effect during the term of this Agreement.
Section 3. Practice Squad Players: The Savings Plan shall be amended to allow players on a Practice Squad to make salary reduction contributions to the Savings Plan. Practice Squad Players with at least three game credits in a Season who are not otherwise eligible under Section 2 of this Article 54 shall receive a contribution (up to a maximum of $1,500) equal to two dollars for every one dollar of such player’s salary reduction contribution, but shall not be eligible for the Minimum Contribution.

ARTICLE 55
PLAYER ANNUITY PROGRAM

Section 1. Maintenance: The current terms of the NFL Player Annuity Program (“Annuity Program”), a jointly administered Taft-Hartley multiemployer defined contribution program, will be continued and maintained in full force and effect during the term of this Agreement, except as amended below, and will continue to include a taxable portion (“Taxable Portion”), and a tax-qualified portion (“Qualified Portion”). The Annuity Program, and all future amendments thereto as adopted in accordance with the terms of that Program, are incorporated by reference and made a part of this Agreement; provided, however, that the terms used in such Program and the definitions of such terms are applicable only to such Program, and shall have no applicability to this Agreement unless the context of this Agreement specifically mandates the use of such terms.   Section 2. Contributions:  For each League Year of this Agreement, through the League Year ending in 2031, a contribution will continue to be made to the Annuity Program on behalf of the NFL Clubs as follows: 
(a)           Expenses. The NFL Clubs will make advance contributions to the Annuity Program in an amount sufficient to pay all administrative expenses approved by the Annuity Board. For purposes of this provision the term “administrative expenses” does not include reserve or similar capital requirements. 
(b)          Allocation. In the Annuity Years (as defined in the Annuity Program document) beginning in 2020 and ending in 2031, an Allocation will be made for each eligible player who earns a Credited Season (as that term is defined in the Bert Bell/Pete Rozelle NFL Player Retirement Plan) in an Annuity Year and who has a total of two  or more Credited Seasons as of the end of such Annuity Year. The amount of the Allocation will be first allocated to the Qualified Portion not to exceed the maximum permitted under law, with the remainder allocated to the Taxable Portion.  The amount of the allocation to the Annuity Program, subject to offset by the allocation made to the Capital Accumulation Plan described in Article 55A, shall be: 

(c)           Future Contributions. Contributions, if any, for subsequent years will be determined pursuant to future collective bargaining agreements, if any. It will be the duty of the fiduciaries of the Player Annuity Program to pursue all available legal remedies in an effort to assure payment of all contributions due under this Agreement.
Section 3. Timing:  An eligible player who earns a Credited Season through the sixth week of the regular season of an Annuity Year will receive an allocation on December 1 of such Annuity Year. All other players who are entitled to an allocation in an Annuity Year will receive an allocation on March 31 of such Annuity Year. 
Section 4. Structure:  The Annuity Program will continue to hold assets for the sole benefit of players and their beneficiaries and to pay all expenses of the Annuity Program approved by the Annuity Board. The Annuity Program is intended, except the tax qualified portion referenced above and the allocation to the Capital Accumulation Plan in Article 55A, to be a program of deferred compensation that is not tax-qualified within the meaning of Section 401(a) of the Internal Revenue Code. Accordingly, it is intended that individual allocations will be subject to current taxation, and that taxes will be withheld in accordance with the requirements of applicable federal, state, and local law. The parties intend that the amount of each individual taxable allocation remaining after withholding taxes will be used to purchase an annuity. 
Section 5. NFL Player Annuity & Insurance Company Net Worth:  Unless unusual circumstances exist that warrant a greater Net Worth, the estimated Net Worth of the NFL Player Annuity & Insurance Company (“Company”) at the end of each calendar year shall continue to not be less than the greater of (1) one percent (1%) of the total Segregated Accounts, or (2) $3.5 million. For purposes of this calculation, Net Worth is defined as the net worth of the Company as shown in the pro forma financial statements. At its last meeting in each calendar year, the Company’s Board of Directors shall continue to determine: 
(a) Whether or not unusual circumstances exist that warrant a greater estimated Net Worth;
(b) The amount of any payment to the player Segregated Accounts from the Company General Account for the current year, such that the estimated Net Worth for the current year does not unreasonably exceed the above limits; and 
(c) The amount, if any, by which the Company charge to the player Segregated Accounts for the upcoming calendar year should be changed, such that the estimated Net Worth at the end of the following calendar year is not expected to unreasonably exceed or be less than the above limits.

ARTICLE 55A
NFL PLAYER CAPITAL ACCUMULATION PLAN
Section 1.  Maintenance:  The current terms of the NFL Player Capital Accumulation Plan (“CAP Plan”), a jointly administered Taft-Hartley multiemployer defined contribution plan, will be continued and maintained in full force and effect during the term of this Agreement, except as amended below, and all past and future amendments thereto as adopted in accordance with the terms of that Plan, are incorporated by reference and made a part of this Agreement; provided, however, that the terms used in such Plan and the definitions of such terms are applicable only to such Plan and shall have no applicability to this Agreement unless the context of this Agreement specifically mandates the use of such terms.   
Section 2.  Contributions:   For each Credited Season earned during the 2020 Plan Year  through the 2030 Plan Year, NFL Clubs will make an allocation to the CAP Plan for each Plan Year based on Credited Seasons earned as follows:

Section 3.  Timing:   The NFL Clubs will be required to contribute by December 1 of such Plan Year for those players who earn a Credited Season by and through the sixth week of the regular season, and by the last day of such Plan Year (March 31 of the following calendar year) for all other eligible players.
Section 4.  Expenses:   The NFL Clubs will make advanced contributions to the CAP Plan in an amount sufficient to pay all administrative expenses approved by the CAP Board. Player forfeitures, as determined under the vesting schedule described in the CAP Plan, will be used to reduce the amount of advanced contributions.
Section 5.  Future Contributions:  Contributions to the CAP Plan, if any, for subsequent years will be determined pursuant to future collective bargaining agreements, if any.

ARTICLE 56
TUITION ASSISTANCE PLAN
Section 1. Maintenance:  The current terms of the NFL Player Tuition Assistance Plan (“Tuition Plan”) will be continued and maintained in full force and effect during the term of this Agreement, except as amended below, and all past and future amendments thereto as adopted in accordance with the terms of that Plan are incorporated by reference and made a part of this Agreement; provided, however, that the terms used in such Plan and the definitions of such terms are applicable only to such Plan and shall have no applicability to this Agreement unless the context of this Agreement specifically mandates the use of such terms.
Section 2.  Change in Plan Year:   The Tuition Plan shall be amended so that the Plan Year commences on September 1st, (effective as of September 1, 2020) and that all references to League Year shall be amended to Plan Year. Annual and aggregate benefit limits and deadlines will be transitioned as set forth below. 
Section 3.  Benefit.   The Tuition Plan shall continue to provide up to $20,000 per Plan Year (increasing to $25,000 beginning with the 2026 Plan Year) through the last day of the 2030 League Year for reimbursement for tuition, fees, books, or other expenses as defined in the Tuition Plan for reimbursable expenses incurred (under the terms of the Tuition Plan, an expense is incurred when paid) during the Plan Year, to any eligible player for a course or courses for which he earns a grade of “C minus” or better at an eligible educational institution, including trade or vocational schools, within the meaning of Section 529(e)(5) of the Internal Revenue Code, or as otherwise defined in the plan. The Plan shall be amended to provide that a player with less than two Credited Seasons who does not use the full amount of his benefit during a Plan Year in which he is eligible, and who is not eligible for the benefit in the following Plan Year, shall be eligible to use during such following Plan Year any remaining benefit amount from the Plan Year in which he was eligible. The Plan shall be further amended so that solely for the League Year ending in 2020, an eligible player who has not used his $20,000 by the end of such League Year shall have until August 31, 2020 to use such benefit.  An eligible player who has used his $20,000 for the League Year ending in 2020, and who incurs a reimbursable expense after the end of the League Year, but before the first day of the 2020 Plan Year commencing on September 1, 2020, may seek reimbursement for such expense, but any reimbursement shall apply to the $20,000 annual limit for the 2020 Plan Year. The Plan shall continue to provide that a reimbursable expense is incurred during a Plan Year if it is paid in such Plan Year, including the 2030 Plan Year. A reimbursable expense incurred on or after the beginning of the 2030 Plan Year, and on or before the end of the 2030 League Year, shall be payable after the end of the 2030 League Year if the claim for reimbursement is timely filed under the requirements of the Tuition Plan, and all other requirements of the Tuition Plan are satisfied. The Tuition Plan shall continue to be a written plan that is intended to qualify as an educational assistance program under Section 127 of the Internal Revenue Code that provides benefits to a player in any calendar year up to the maximum exclusion amount of Section 127 of the Internal Revenue Code, to minimize the tax burden on players. Benefits in excess of the maximum exclusion of Section 127 of the Internal Revenue Code in any calendar year will be subject to taxation and wage withholdings. To be eligible for reimbursement, fees must be associated with the course or courses taken. 
Section 4. Eligibility and Former Player Benefit:  The Tuition Plan shall be amended to provide that: (a) To be eligible for reimbursement, the player must have earned at least one Credited Season prior to the beginning of the Plan Year and be on the Active, Inactive, or Reserve/Injured roster for at least one game of the NFL regular season during the Plan Year in which the course or courses commence. A player who does not have a Credited Season prior to the Plan Year, but who earns a Credited Season during the Plan Year and is on the Active, Inactive, or Reserve/Injured roster for at least one game of the NFL regular season during the Plan Year shall be eligible for reimbursement for courses commencing after the Season but within that Plan Year. The requirement that a player must be under contract when he incurs the reimbursable expense shall be eliminated.   (b) A player, who (i) is not eligible for benefits under Section 4(a) above, (ii) and (ii) has at least two (2) Credited Seasons under the Bert Bell/Pete Rozelle NFL Player Retirement Plan, shall be eligible to be reimbursed based on the number of his Credited Seasons up to the aggregate amounts set forth below:

(c) The Plan shall be amended effective for the 2020 Plan Year, such that a Practice Squad player who is on a Practice Squad for three weeks in a Season shall earn $5,000 for that Season (increasing to $7,500 beginning with the 2026 Plan Year) to be used toward reimbursement under this Article 56. A Practice Squad Player must use the amount earned for tuition reimbursement during a Season before the end of the Plan Year in which the player earns the benefit. However, if a player does not use his benefit earned during the Season by the end of such Plan Year, and the Season is the last Season in which the player is on a Practice Squad roster for three weeks and he does not otherwise qualify for reimbursement under Section 3(a) or 3(b), he shall have until the end of the following Plan Year to use the benefit. A Practice Squad Player shall be deemed to have used the benefit as of the date he incurs the reimbursable expense (defined under the Plan as the date he pays the expense), and not the date he first satisfies the requirement to be reimbursed. If a Practice Squad player becomes eligible for the benefit under this Article 56 by satisfying the requirements under Section 3(a) he shall not be eligible for the Practice Squad benefit for any Plan Year in which he is otherwise eligible under Section 3(a). If the player has used some or all of his Practice Squad benefit in a Plan Year, and then becomes eligible for reimbursement under Section 3(a), the player’s aggregate benefit for such Plan Year shall not exceed $20,000 (or $25,000 beginning with the 2026 Plan Year).
Section 5. Reimbursement:  An eligible player will be reimbursed no more than seventy five (75) days after the player submits a certified transcript, or similar documentation for a covered non-degree program, from the eligible educational institution for that semester, and receipts demonstrating payment for tuition, fees,  books, or other expenses as defined under the Plan, but only if his completed application is received by the Plan Administrator within six (6) months of the date he completes the course as defined in the plan. 
Section 6. Administration:  The NFL shall continue to administer the Tuition Assistance Plan. The NFL shall not change any benefit provided under this Article 56 without the consent of the NFLPA.

ARTICLE 57
88 BENEFIT
Section 1. Establishment:  The current terms of the “88 Plan”, a jointly administered Taft-Hartley multiemployer welfare plan, shall continue in full force and effect, except as amended below, to provide medical benefits as set forth in the “88 Plan” document to former players who are (1) vested due to their Credited Seasons or their total and permanent disability under the Retirement Plan or the Disability Plan, and (2) determined by the governing Board of the 88 Plan (the “88 Board”) to have “dementia,” amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), and/or Parkinson’s disease as defined by the parties. The 88 Plan, and any and all future amendments thereto, will be incorporated by reference and made a part of this Agreement; provided, however, that the terms used in such Plan and the definitions of such terms are applicable only to such Plan, and shall have no applicability to this Agreement unless the context of this Agreement specifically mandates the use of such terms. The Plan Year begins on April 1.  
Section 2.  Benefits: Effective April 1, 2020, the parties shall amend Section 3.2(a) of the 88 Plan to: increase the maximum in-home care benefit to $140,000 per year (increased to $165,000 per year beginning with the 2025 Plan Year) and the institutional care benefit to $160,000 per year (increased to $185,000 per year beginning with the 2025 Plan Year).  
Section 3. No Reduction for Parkinson’s Disease:  Effective April 1, 2020, the parties shall amend Section 3.2(a) of the 88 Plan to exclude 88 Plan eligible players diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease from the reduction in 88 Plan Benefits for disability benefits such player receives under the Retirement Plan or the Disability Plan.  
Section 4. Funding:  The NFL Clubs will make advance contributions to the 88 Plan in an amount sufficient to pay benefits and all administrative expenses approved by the 88 Board.  
Section 5. Term: This Plan will continue to provide benefits as above after the 2030 League Year and after the expiration of this Agreement, but only to a former player who qualified during the term of this Agreement and who remains qualified.

ARTICLE 59
SEVERANCE PAY
Section 1. Eligibility and Maintenance:  The current terms of the NFL Player Severance Pay Plan (“Severance Plan”) shall continue, except as amended below, and all past and future amendments thereto as adopted in accordance with the terms of that Plan, are incorporated by reference and made a part of this Agreement; provided, however, that the terms used in such Plan and the definitions of such terms are applicable only to such Plan and shall have no applicability to this Agreement unless the context of this Agreement specifically mandates the use of such terms. The Severance Plan will be continued and maintained in full force and effect during the term of this Agreement and at all times comply with the terms of this Article. Only players with two or more Credited Seasons (as that term is defined in the Bert Bell/Pete Rozelle NFL Player Retirement Plan), at least one of which is for a season commencing in 1993 or later, will be eligible for severance pay under this Plan. This Article will not extinguish or affect any other rights that a player may have to any other severance pay. Determinations of the Retirement Board with respect to Credited Seasons will be final and binding for purposes of determining severance pay. 
Section 2. Amount:  Each eligible player will receive severance pay in the amounts determined as follows:

Section 3. Payment:  Severance pay under this Article will continue to be paid in a single lump sum payment by the NFL Club with which the player last earned a Credited Season. The payment will be made automatically on the last day of the calendar quarter in which the eligible player’s “separation from service” as defined in the Severance Plan and within the meaning of Internal Revenue Code Section 409A, occurs, unless his separation from service occurs within twenty (20) days of such date, in which case his severance pay will be paid on the last day of the next following calendar quarter.

Section 4. Second Payment: Any player who returns to NFL football after receiving a severance payment under this Article will still be entitled to further severance pay based solely on his subsequent Credited Seasons. 

Section 5. Payable to Survivor:  In the event a player eligible to receive severance pay under this Article dies before receiving such pay, the player’s designated beneficiary (or his estate in the absence of a designated beneficiary) will be entitled to receive such pay on the later of (a) the next payment date following the date of the player’s death, or (b) thirty (30) days after written notification of the player’s death.. 

Section 6. Administration: The NFL shall continue to administer the Severance Plan. The NFL shall not change any benefit provided under this Article 59 without the consent of the NFLPA.  Section 7. Non-assignability:  The right to receive payment hereunder shall not be assignable, transferable or delegable, whether by pledge, creation of a security interest or otherwise, and in the event of any attempted assignment, transfer or delegation, the Clubs will have no liability to pay any amount so attempted to be assigned, transferred or delegated. Neither the NFL nor any NFL Clubs will have any obligation to verify other than to the NFLPA upon request the amount of severance pay a player may be entitled to receive, unless and until an application for pay is properly submitted by such player. Notwithstanding the preceding, (1) a player’s severance pay will be assigned and paid to an “alternate payee,” under a court order that satisfies the essential requirements to be a “qualified domestic relations order” within the meaning of Internal Revenue Code Section 414(p); and (2) a Club may offset against severance pay, at the time of payment, amounts to the extent permitted by Internal Revenue Code Section 409A and the regulations thereunder.

ARTICLE 61
LONG TERM CARE INSURANCE PLAN
Section 1. Eligibility and Maintenance:  The Long Term Care Insurance Plan (“LTC Plan”) in effect as of the date hereof, and all future amendments thereto, shall continue through March 1, 2021, under its current terms, except as amended below, and is incorporated by reference and made a part of this Agreement; provided, however, that the terms used in the LTC Plan and the definitions of such terms are applicable only to the LTC Plan and shall have no applicability to this Agreement unless the context of this Agreement specifically mandates the use of such terms. The LTC Plan will be continued and maintained in full force and effect during the term of this Agreement; provided, however, that if the Management Council determines that it would be more efficient and economical to administer the LTC Plan under the Former Player Life Improvement Plan, or through another benefit plan or arrangement, the LTC Plan may be terminated and the benefits provided hereunder be provided under the Former Player Life Improvement Plan or such other plan, subject to approval by the NFLPA. Only players who have permanently ceased playing professional football; who are vested under the Retirement Plan  based on Credited Seasons; who have attained the age of 50 and not yet attained the age of 76; and who satisfy the underwriting requirements of the insurer are eligible for insurance under the LTC Plan.  
Section 2. Benefits:  All eligible players issued a Long Term Care insurance contract on or before March 1, 2021 provided by a national insurer as described in Section 1 of this Article 61 will be entitled to receive benefits under such contract in the event the player is certified by a licensed health care provider as (i) requiring critical supervision, or (ii) requiring the presence of another person within arm’s reach due to inability to perform a required number of defined activities of daily living. The Long Term Care insurance contract is renewable for life and entitles the player to receive a maximum daily benefit of $150 for a maximum of four years.
Section 3. Limitations:  Benefits will continue to not be paid for confinement, treatment, services or care: (i) resulting from alcoholism, drug addiction, or chemical dependency, unless as a result of medication prescribed by a physician; (ii) arising out of suicide (while sane or insane), attempted suicide, or intentionally self-inflicted injury; (iii) provided in a government facility (unless otherwise required by law), services for which benefits are payable under Medicare, or would be payable except for application of a deductible or coinsurance amount, or other governmental programs (except Medicaid), and services for which no charge is normally made in the absence of insurance; (iv) received outside the United States; (v) for which benefits are payable under any state or federal workers’ compensation, employer’s liability of occupational disease law; (vi) that are not included in a participant’s participant’s plan of care; or (vii) that are prohibited by federal law. 
Section 4. Plan Benefits Primary: Any player who is entitled to any payment or benefit under any other Article of this Agreement that would be eligible for payment or reimbursement under the LTC Plan will continue to have such payment or benefit offset by the amount eligible for payment or reimbursement under the LTC Plan. 
Section 5. Administration:  The NFL shall continue to administer the LTC Plan. The NFL shall not change any benefit provided under this Article 61 without the consent of the NFLPA.

ARTICLE 62
GENE UPSHAW NFL PLAYER HEALTH REIMBURSEMENT ACCOUNT
Section 4.  Allocation for Certain Former Players.  The HRA Plan shall be amended to provide an allocation to former players who are alive and not yet age 65 on April 1, 2020, who have at least three Credited Seasons, and who have never had a nominal account in the HRA. The amount of this one-time allocation to the nominal account of players eligible for an allocation under this Section 4 shall be $50,000. The allocation to the nominal account of these former players will be made as of April 1, 2020. A former player receiving an allocation under this Section 4 may submit a claim for reimbursement from the HRA Plan for medical expenses incurred on or after April 1, 2020, if the date of service for such expenses is within 12 months from the date the former player submits a claim for reimbursement.

ARTICLE 63
FORMER PLAYER LIFE IMPROVEMENT PLAN
Section 1. Maintenance:
(a) The current terms of the Former Player Life Improvement Plan (“FPLIP”), will be continued and maintained in full force and effect during the term of this Agreement, except as amended below. The FPLIP, and all past and future amendments thereto as adopted in accordance with the terms of the FPLIP, are incorporated by reference and made a part of this Agreement, provided, however, that the terms used in the FPLIP and definitions of such terms are applicable only to the FPLIP and shall have no applicability to the Agreement unless the context of this Agreement specifically mandates the use of such terms.
Section 2.  Joint Replacements:  The Joint Replacement benefit shall be continued under the FPLIP.  Different levels of benefits are provided to eligible former players depending on whether they are covered by medical insurance. 
(a)           Former players covered by medical insurance will be entitled to the lesser of $5,250 ($10,500 in the case of a bilateral procedure) or the former player’s co-insurance for health care items and services related to the joint replacement surgery, provided the expense was incurred within one year of the former player’s surgery and would be eligible for payment under the NFL Player Insurance Plan. 
(b)          If a former player is not covered by insurance and qualifies to receive charitable care from the NFL Player Care Foundation under the charitable care standards established and interpreted by the NFL Player Care Foundation’s board of directors (to the extent the NFL Player Care Foundation continues to provide such charitable care to former NFL players), the former player will be treated at a participating healthcare facility qualified to perform the joint replacement. The FPLIP will pay 20% of a pre-negotiated rate. In addition, if such former player experiences complications from joint replacement surgery, the FPLIP will pay 100% of the reasonable and customary amount charged for the treatment of the complications up to a maximum of $250,000, provided the expense is incurred within one year of surgery. 
(c)           Limitations. No benefits will be paid for revisions of prior procedures that replaced a joint. Bilateral procedures will not be available for former players who qualify for payment pursuant to Subsection 1(b) of this Article. 
Section 3.  Discount Prescription Drug Benefits:  The benefit shall be continued under the FPLIP as follows: 
(a)           Eligible former players and their dependents who are not eligible for coverage under the NFL Player Insurance Plan are eligible for a discount prescription drug benefit. Eligible former players and their dependents will be issued a card that provides immediate discounts for prescription drugs at participating retail pharmacies in the United States.  (b)          Limitations. There is no discount for over-the-counter or non-prescription medication. The discount card benefit may not be used in conjunction with any other plan or program, including Medicare, that provides similar benefits.
Section 4. Assisted Living Benefits:  All eligible former players shall continue to be entitled to certain discounts and preferred access at participating assisted living providers.  
Section 5. Spine Treatment Benefit: Eligible former players shall continue to receive facilitated access and comprehensive, coordinated evaluation at participating medical centers. Each facility will designate one orthopedic surgeon as a point of contact to coordinate and oversee all aspects of an eligible former player’s evaluation.  
Section 6. Neurological Benefit:  Eligible former players shall continue to receive facilitated access and comprehensive, coordinated evaluation at participating medical centers. Each facility will designate one of its neurologists or neurosurgeons as a point of contact to coordinate and oversee all aspects of an eligible former player’s evaluation. 
Section 7. Life Insurance Benefit:  Eligible former players who (i) have neither reached their normal retirement age nor actually retired under the Retirement Plan and (ii) are not eligible for Life Insurance benefits under the NFL Player Insurance Plan, shall continue to be covered by a term life insurance policy, except effective September 1, 2020, the FPLIP shall be amended to increase the amount of the life insurance to $40,000, plus $2,000 for each Credited Season in excess of a player’s required number of seasons to vest under the Retirement Plan, up to a maximum of $50,000. 
Section 8. Medicare Supplement:  Effective September 1, 2020, the FPLIP shall be amended to eliminate the current Medicare Supplement benefit and replace such benefit with an individual Medicare Supplement HRA account to include a monthly nominal credit of $160 (increasing to $200 effective September 1, 2026) to reimburse an eligible former player who is eligible for Medicare for monthly premiums incurred for the purchase of a Medicare Supplement or Advantage Plan.  Except for the player’s first monthly premium, for which the player must first pay out-of-pocket and seek reimbursement under his individual Medicare Supplement HRA account, the cost of the player’s premium, not to exceed the greater of the premium cost or the above maximum, shall be deposited in the player’s personal bank account prior to its due date.  Any excess amount above the premium, up to the maximum, shall remain in the player’s nominal Medicare Supplement HRA account and may be used to pay future premiums. Any account balance remaining upon the player’s death shall be forfeited. 
Section 9. Administration:  The NFL shall continue to administer the FPLIP.  
Section 10. NFLPA Review:  The NFLPA shall have the right to review and approve all programs and any changes made to the programs that are or have been implemented pursuant to the FPLI Plan.

ARTICLE 63A
NON-VESTED FORMER PLAYER WELLNESS PLAN
Section 1. Maintenance:  The Non-Vested Former Player Wellness Plan (the “NonVested Wellness Plan”) is a Work/Life Resources program providing counseling and other resources for all former players not vested in the Retirement Plan based on Credited Seasons, but who have been covered at any point under the Insurance Plan. The Non-Vested Wellness Plan will be continued and maintained in full force and effect during the term of this Agreement, and all past and future amendments thereto as adopted in accordance with the terms of the Non-Vested Wellness Plan are incorporated by reference and made a part of this Agreement, provided, however, that the terms of the Non-Vested Wellness Plan used in the Non-Vested Wellness Plan and definitions of such terms are applicable only to the Non-Vested Wellness Plan and shall have no applicability to the Agreement unless the context of this Agreement specifically mandates the use of such terms. The first day  of the Plan Year shall be April 1.
Section 2. Administration:  The NFL shall continue to administer the Non-Vested Wellness Plan.

MORE Info about how the CBA effects Retired NFL Players:
NBC Sports Philadelphia
“How the new NFL Collective Bargaining Agreement helps retired players”
NFLPA
Former Player CBA Issues

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