Disability Insurance

What Is Disability Insurance?

Disability insurance is a benefit of coverage for when you have a disability from any source of trauma or any medical condition. There are different types of disability insurance, each providing different ranges of coverage. Usually offered through your employer, disability insurance will come in short-term disability and long-term disability divisions. Each one providing the same type of coverage however, at different stages of the disability.

Stipulations and exclusions may apply to the type of disability coverage used but both are paid for at the same time and part of an employers benefit package. Insurance can be purchased on it's own outside of an employer as with any insurance it is advised to have some kind of coverage. This insurance covers a portion of your income if you are injured or sustain an injury from an accident or any new medical condition. Short-term disability coverage is for the first six to nine months of the disability that prevents you from going to work and performing any duties of your job. Long-term disability is after that time and will cover the employee for a longer amount of time to be determined by further physical evaluation and assessment.

Who Is Eligible For Short-Term Disability And Long-Term Disability?

Anyone can apply for short-term disability or long-term disability if they have been paying into disability over the required period of time. It works just like any insurance with guidelines and exclusions specific to disability coverage. The proper paperwork must be in order and the qualified doctor must complete that portion of the paperwork as well. Some disability insurance companies ask that you see a short-term disability doctor of their choice because they are more familiar with the procedures and documents that need to be filled out. 

How Does Disability Insurance Work?

Once you have selected the insurance you want to add to your benefits package you will be given a list of benefits that will give you instructions on what to do when the occasion arises that you need the apply for the benefit. Once you have a doctor claim that you qualify for disability insurance you will able to apply for the benefit coverage at that time. Paperwork must be submitted by the doctor and you and your employer may assist you with the application process.

The injury or medical condition is diagnosed by a physician and then classified as what level of work you may be able to do if any. Short-term disability is designed to cover your pay for a specific amount of time with the intention of it being a temporary condition. The covered and approved employee will receive a portion of their wages for the term of the disability insurance period. Depending upon the length of recovery or the type of medical condition the disability coverage will then need to be extended to long-term coverage if the condition still keeps the employee from being able to work in any capacity. At that time, it may be the same amount of compensation or it may increase depending on the coverage applied for in the beginning. The insurance will then continue until the employee is able to return to work or is considered permanently disabled. 

As with any insurance, it is there as a cushion when an accident arises. It is security in knowing that there will be some income still coming in even if you are unable to work for a short period of time or for long-term disability. Having all the information in a secure and safe spot is also advised so that if the situation arises you will have all the information readily available to complete the application process. Providing as much information as possible and completely filling out the applications will speed up the approval process.