pay for a period of One Calendar Year (Two Calendar Years with respect to benefits under Article VII, Parts E and F) until such time as the Employee again renders compensated service or receives vacation pay and becomes insured in accordance with Paragraph 1 above . . . ."
Thus, the over-all parameters of insurance coverage under the Contract clearly emerge from the delineated provisions.
In essence, the following scheme is created:
(1) A new employee must complete thirty continuous calendar days of employment in a capacity covered under the Contract.
(2) On the first day of the calendar month thereafter he becomes a "Qualifying Employee".
(3) If he thereafter ceases to be a "Qualifying Employee" because he leaves his employment, he again becomes a "Qualifying Employee" in the month of his return to compensated service or receipt of vacation pay.
In sum, there is only one waiting period before becoming a "Qualifying Employee", even though there may be an interruption in the employment relationship. It is conceded that Dufner was a "Qualifying Employee" in the month of his return to active employment on March 17, 1969.
However, a second requirement exists for coverage under the terms of the Contract. Article VI provides coverage for an employee only during a month in which a premium is paid by the employer with respect to that employee, while Article IV mandates payment of the premium in the ensuing calendar month after the employee performs compensated service or receives vacation pay. In the case of a furloughed employee, coverage ceases after four months, and the requirement for a premium payment arises only in the month following the month in which the employee returns to compensated service or receives vacation pay. Thus, a returning employee is subject to a second waiting period before coverage resumes under the Contract, unless he is within the sweep of one of the exceptions of Article VI(A) (1) (a) (i)-(iii).
Although Dufner became a "Qualifying Employee" immediately upon his return to active employment on March 17, 1969, no premium became payable by Penn Central before the month commencing April 1, 1969, and therefore he did not have insurance coverage until the latter date. This lawsuit has its genesis in the circumstances which gave rise to plaintiff's injury between March 17, 1969, and March 31, 1969, an interim period during which premiums were not payable and insurance coverage was therefore not available to plaintiff under the controlling terms of the Contract.
It is clear from the above analysis that the provisions of Group Policy Contract No. GA-23,000 proscribe an award of any benefits to Dufner for the accident which occurred before April 1, 1969. The government maintains, however, on Dufner's behalf, that benefits must be conferred pursuant to statutory rights created by the Military Selective Service Act of 1967, the relevant portions of which provide as follows:
(b) Reemployments rights