Understanding Long Term Disability Insurance: Things You Need to Know

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A lot of people think that they don’t need disability insurance. But studies now show that 3 out of 10 employees ages 25 to 65 will experience a disability or illness that will affect their ability to work for at least a three-month period. If you depend on income from your salary to live month to month, you cannot afford to lose your income for months on end, especially at a time when you will have increased medical bills, including costly copays.

Things You Need to Know

If your incapacity from work is arising out of and in the course of employment, you will likely be entitled to weekly workers’ compensation benefits. But if your injury is not work related, you’ll need to replace your lost income some other way. This is where long term disability insurance comes into play.

You can often obtain both short term and a long term disability insurance from your employer. Short term disability insurance typically covers claims for disability periods of six months, while long-term disability insurance typically last until age 65. The main reason to obtain disability insurance is to ensure that you will still earn enough income to live while you are unable to work. Disability insurance typically will not entirely replace your wages, but they do pay anywhere from 50% to 70% of your usual pay.

To obtain long term disability in Massachusetts, you’ll usually need to consult with your employer. Businesses are not required to provide their employees with insurance benefits, but most do. In the past, employers paid the monthly premiums for those benefits. Employers today vary as to whether they pay the entire cost of the insurance or make a contribution towards the cost of insurance. If your employer has insurance and you plan to enroll, take the time to review the policy to understand the terms of your coverage, like whether there is a waiting period before coverage begins.

If you do become disabled, you will need to file a claim and fill out all of the necessary documents. Insurance companies will not approve a claim automatically, and in fact will deny a meritorious claim if they feel they have a reasonable basis for doing so. This is where experienced lawyers from firms like The Law Offices of Terrence A. Low and Anthony J. Canata can help. These lawyers will make sure that your claim is properly filed and that all supporting paperwork is submitted so that your claim will be approved without a costly delay.

5 Myths About Disability Insurance, Forbes
Understanding Your Long-Term Disability Policy, Nolo.com
Long Term Disability Basics, About.com

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