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Short Term Disability (STD) and Long Term Disability (LTD) Benefits

Many people purchase private Short Term and Long Term Disability Insurance Policies to replace lost earnings when they are sick or injured and have to miss work. Some employers provide these policies or plans as an employee benefit. Sometimes employers require the employee to pay a portion of the cost of these plans, and sometimes not. Ask your employer whether or not such benefits are available to you.
Short Term Disability Plans usually replace lost income for 3 to 6 months depending upon the Plan. Long Term Plans have an “elimination period” of 3 to 6 months before lost earnings are replaced. The Long Term Disability Plans generally replace lost earnings to the age of 65. Each disability plan or insurance policy is different. It is important for people with these plans to get a copy of the actual plan itself, to read the terms, the definition of disability under the plan, and any time limits that may apply. Sometimes these plans require that deductions be made for other income received by the sick or injured individual while they are disabled. Whether or not deductions are made is set forth in the written plan.

Read everything you get, and especially the authorizations you are required to sign. Sometimes the authorizations are much too broad, and allow the plan administrator to get private information which is not directly related to your disability claim, such as your credit reports or score.

To preserve your rights, be sure to do everything in writing.
If you are denied, the denial letter will set forth your options for appealing.

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