Did you know that as a member of Lincoln Electric Cooperative, you get certain benefits? One of the primary benefits of membership is receiving capital credits. Lincoln Electric is a cooperative, which means we are a non-profit organization. Instead of profit, we have margins. Margins are simply any revenue we have in excess of our costs each year. The total yearly margins are allocated to all members who financially contributed (i.e. paid their bill) during the year. Allocations are based on the dollar amount each member contributed for the year by paying their electric bill. For example, if you contributed one half of a percent of our total revenue, you would be allocated one half of a percent of the total margins for that year.
The By-Laws regulate how capital credits are managed. They provide for a rotation of capital over a period not more than twenty (20) years on a first in, first out basis. So the oldest capital credits get paid out first. In 2019, for the 39th consecutive year, the Board of Trustees approved the retirement, or refund, of capital credits. They authorized approximately five percent (5%) of our outstanding capital credits to be retired again this year. This amounts to more than $480,000 that will be refunded in 2019 to our current and past members. In early April, we mailed out checks to members who were active in 2000, 2001, and/or 2002.
Since our incorporation in 1948, Lincoln Electric has returned more than $12.5 million to members in the form of capital credits as shown on the chart below.
Please note that checks are only written for $10 or more. If yours is less than that amount, you will receive a refund once your retired capital credit balance exceeds $10.
Unclaimed Capital Credits