20 CFR 323.3 - Standards for Board approval of a nongovernmental plan.
An unemployment or sickness benefit plan qualifies as a nongovernmental plan if it conforms to the following standards:
(a) The plan is in writing and has been published or otherwise communicated to covered employees prior to the inception of the plan;
(b) Benefits under the plan are payable only to employees who are involuntarily laid off or separated from the service of the employer or who are absent from work on account of illness or injury;
(c) Payment of benefits under the plan is conditioned upon a covered employee's meeting the eligibility conditions governing payment of benefits under the Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act. However, a plan will not be disqualified merely because it:
(1) Provides benefits during any waiting period required under the Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act, or
(2) Provides benefits after an employee has exhausted rights to benefits under the Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act, or
(3) Provides benefits during a period when the employee is not a “qualified employee”, within the meaning of part 302 of this chapter;
(d) Payment of benefits under the plan is coordinated with benefit payments to which the employee may be entitled under the Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act. In general, plan benefit payments will be considered coordinated with Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act benefit payments when computation of the plan benefits takes Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act benefit entitlement into consideration in such a way as to make it clear that the plan is supplementing Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act benefit payments for days of unemployment or days of sickness. For example, a plan that provides for payment of a specified daily benefit amount is considered coordinated with Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act benefit payments if the plan provides that the daily benefit amount otherwise payable to the employee is reduced by the amount of benefits that the employee received or could receive under the Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act for the same day if the employee had met all the eligibility criteria for such benefit. Similarly, there is acceptable coordination if the plan simply provides for payment of an amount as an “add-on” benefit to the amount of Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act benefits paid or payable. On the other hand, a plan that allows payment so as to compensate an employee for railroad or non-railroad earnings that are lower in amount than what the employee would get under the plan if he or she were not employed is not considered coordinated with benefit payments under the Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act because an employer payment made under such circumstances supplements earnings rather than benefit payments under the Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act. No Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act benefits are payable to an employee who is earning remuneration from railroad or non-railroad employment. Employer payments that make up for low earnings are pay for time lost and therefore are compensation and remuneration;
(e) The plan confers upon covered employees an enforceable right to the benefits under the plan. The plan may not commit to management discretion any decision as to whether such employee will actually be paid the benefits to which he is entitled under the plan or the amount to be paid;
(f) The plan may not provide benefits to a covered employee in an amount that, when added to his or her Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act benefits, is greater than the wages of salary that would have been paid if the employee were employed; and
(g) The plan incorporates the features set forth in § 323.4 of this part and has been approved by the Board's Director of Unemployment and Sickness Insurance as a nongovernmental plan for unemployment or sickness insurance.