Long-Term Disability Benefits: Key Terms to Understand

Long-Term Disability Benefits: Key Terms to Understand

Employees across various industries can find themselves physically or mentally incapable of performing the regular duties of their job for prolonged periods of time. This could result in severe losses in employment income and impose significant financial strain. In such an event, employees in Ontario who participate in group insurance benefits or have individual insurance benefits through an insurer likely have access to both short-term disability (“STD”) and long-term disability benefits (“LTD”).

The terms of LTD benefits are normally outlined in an LTD plan included with the employee’s benefits information package.

What Is STD (Short-Term Disability)?

STD provides short-term financial assistance when you are unable to work due to an illness, injury, or medical condition. STD benefits are typically for a shorter duration, often covering the initial weeks of your disability. STD benefits may apply in situations where you are expected to recover and return to work relatively quickly.

What Is LTD (Long-Term Disability)?

LTD provides long-term financial support when you have a disability that extends beyond the short-term. LTD benefits are designed for extended periods, often kicking in after the initial waiting period. LTD benefits may apply when you have a disability expected to last for an extended period or indefinitely.

What Is the Difference Between STD and LTD?

STD and LTD are two distinct forms of disability benefits. STD benefits are typically short-term, while LTD benefits cover extended periods. STD is for temporary disabilities with the expectation of returning to work, while LTD is for long-term or indefinite disabilities. Consider your specific situation and the nature of your disability to determine which benefit is applicable.

Contact Achkar Law today to schedule a consultation with a Long Term Disability Lawyer

Contact us by phone toll-free at 1-800-771-7882 or email us at [email protected], and we will be happy to assist.

Understanding Long-Term Disability Terms

The LTD plan details your entitlements and obligations regarding LTD benefits with a particular insurer. Like any contract, it’s crucial to know which terms to focus on before applying for long-term disability in Ontario. Some important terms include:

Definitions: This section clarifies the meaning of specific terms within the plan, which can affect your eligibility, benefit amount, and duration.

Elimination Period: Also known as the waiting period, this outlines the time you must wait between the onset of your disability and eligibility for LTD benefits.

Monthly Indemnity: This term defines the amount of LTD benefits you are entitled to each month, usually as a percentage of your regular earnings up to a maximum amount.

Benefit Offset: Many LTD plans offset benefits based on income from other sources like worker’s compensation, personal injury settlements, severance, CPP disability, or self-employment income. Understanding which income sources affect your benefits is important.

Rehabilitation: Some LTD plans include provisions requiring you to undergo treatment and make efforts to return to work gradually. Your obligations regarding rehabilitation can vary based on your policy.

Appeals: Familiarize yourself with the internal appeal process outlined in your LTD plan, which allows the insurer to re-evaluate their decisions. Consider your options for appeals, including legal representation or union arbitration.

Benefit Termination: Understand the conditions under which your LTD benefits can be terminated, which may include the end of employment, reaching the maximum benefits period (often around two years), or failing to meet obligations outlined in the plan.

Related Reading

What Is Long Term Disability?

I’m On Long Term Disability. Should I Speak With An Employment Lawyer?

What Medical Information Is My Employer Entitled to in Ontario?

WSIB Claims Process in Ontario: How To Navigate It

Short-Term Disability Insurance Claims FAQ

Contact Achkar Law

If you have questions about your long-term disability entitlements or need advice on appealing an insurer’s decision, the disability lawyers at Achkar Law are here to help.

Contact us by phone toll-free at  1 (800) 771-7882  or email us at [email protected] and we would be happy to assist.