Friday, November 21, 2014





IWS Documented News Service


Institute for Workplace Studies-----------------Professor Samuel B. Bacharach

School of Industrial & Labor Relations-------- Director, Institute for Workplace Studies

Cornell University

16 East 34th Street, 4th floor--------------------Stuart Basefsky

New York, NY 10016 -------------------------------Director, IWS News Bureau


This service is supported, in part, by donations. Please consider making a donation by following the instructions at





[full-text, 26 pages]


The definitions of major plans, key provisions, and related terms presented in this glossary are those used by the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), National Compensation Survey (NCS) program when conducting its survey of employee benefits. Under the NCS program, information on the incidence and provision of benefits is published in several stages. Data on the incidence of (access to and participation in) selected benefits and detailed provisions of paid leave plans, life insurance plans, disability benefits, other selected benefits, and the employer and employee shares of contributions to medical care premiums are published annually, with a March reference period. Separate estimates are published for civilian workers, private industry employees, and state and local government workers.

Data on detailed provisions of health insurance and retirement benefits for both private industry and state and local government also are available. See the BLS website Note: Access to employee benefit programs and participation in those programs, as these concepts are used in the National Compensation Survey, are defined as follows:

·         Access to a benefit plan: Employees are considered to have access to a benefit plan if it is available for their use. For example, if an employee is permitted to participate in a medical care plan offered by the employer, but the employee declines to do so, he or she is placed in a category with those having access to medical care.

·         Participation in a benefit plan: Employees in contributory plans are considered participants in an insurance or retirement plan if they have paid required contributions and fulfilled any applicable service requirements. Employees in noncontributory plans are counted as participating regardless of whether they have fulfilled the service requirements. Note that the term "incidence" can refer to either rates of access or rates of participation in a benefit plan.

·         Take-up rate: The percentage of workers with access to a plan who participate in the plan.

Information on the scope of the survey, the sample design, data collection, survey estimation, and the reliability of estimates for all NCS products are in the BLS Handbook of Methods, at



This information is provided to subscribers, friends, faculty, students and alumni of the School of Industrial & Labor Relations (ILR). It is a service of the Institute for Workplace Studies (IWS) in New York City. Stuart Basefsky is responsible for the selection of the contents which is intended to keep researchers, companies, workers, and governments aware of the latest information related to ILR disciplines as it becomes available for the purposes of research, understanding and debate. The content does not reflect the opinions or positions of Cornell University, the School of Industrial & Labor Relations, or that of Mr. Basefsky and should not be construed as such. The service is unique in that it provides the original source documentation, via links, behind the news and research of the day. Use of the information provided is unrestricted. However, it is requested that users acknowledge that the information was found via the IWS Documented News Service.










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