Employee Benefits:

Financing Health Benefits of Coal Industry Retirees

HRD-92-137FS: Published: Jul 22, 1992. Publicly Released: Jul 22, 1992.

Additional Materials:


Office of Public Affairs
(202) 512-4800

Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information regarding proposed legislation for coal industry retirees' health benefits and existing pension trusts, focusing on: (1) the characteristics of the trusts' beneficiaries, (2) the benefits provided, and (3) the present and projected financial condition of the trusts.

GAO found that: (1) there were deficits in the industry's pension and benefits trusts, which result in increased contribution rates and could reduce access to benefits; (2) there were over 116,000 beneficiaries enrolled in the trusts; (3) many of the beneficiaries' employers are either no longer in business, their business status is not known, or the company is unidentifiable; (4) the trusts provide inpatient and outpatient hospital benefits, primary care benefits including a $5 copayment for physicians visits up to $100 per year, low prescription drug copayment benefits, and other specialized benefits; (5) reenrollment and recertification would not identify a significant number of ineligible beneficiaries; (6) health benefits for beneficiaries' children ends at 22 years of age; and (7) the funding formula for the trusts is based on the employee's work hours, with additional contributions coming from employers through coal tonnage purchases from other operators.

Jun 22, 2020

Apr 14, 2020

Feb 14, 2020

Feb 10, 2020

Sep 9, 2019

Apr 10, 2019

  • employment icon, source: GAO

    Priority Open Recommendations:

    Department of Labor
    GAO-19-395SP: Published: Apr 3, 2019. Publicly Released: Apr 10, 2019.

Apr 9, 2019

Apr 8, 2019

Mar 28, 2019

Feb 28, 2019

Looking for more? Browse all our products here