Many employers offer long-term disability benefits to employees as part of their group benefit packages. Long-term disability benefits provide income replacement to those who are unable to work for an indefinite period of time due to an illness or injury. While every long-term disability policy is different, all policies require that an insured person satisfy a “qualifying period”(also known as an elimination period or waiting period), submit a complete application, provide updated medical application, participate in treatment/rehabilitation and be subject to a “change of definition” where the insurer’s definition of disability changes from “own” occupation to “any” occupation.
The amount of your long-term disability benefit will depend on your policy. Benefit amounts can be equivalent to 50%-85% of your monthly income. Depending on your policy, your benefit may or not be taxable.
Long-term disability policies are complex and contain many provisions. Letters from the insurance company may contain terms that are ambiguous or unclear. A lawyer can help you to understand your insurance policy and any letters from your insurer.
If your application for long- term disability benefits has been denied, or your benefits have been terminated, you should not hesitate to seek legal advice. It is always important to understand your rights and your options with respect to a denial of benefits and to know that you can pursue a court action against your insurer.