Money helps, but being sick makes life hard.
- Steve Magee
Short- and long-term disability plans provide income in place of your regular pay if you are sick or injured and unable to work. They cover non-work-related injuries only. Work-related injuries are covered by the State Workers’ Compensation program.
About Disability Benefits
You’re automatically covered for short-term disability (STD) and core long-term disability (LTD) starts after 30 days of employment, as long as you are actively at work. That is, not on leave or disabled, on the day your disability coverage is to start. Otherwise, coverage won’t start until you return to work.
During your first 12 months of coverage, LTD does not cover conditions for which you received treatment 90 days before your LTD coverage became effective. New conditions, however, are covered.
Short-term disability begins after you’ve been unable to work for 40 consecutive hours due to an injury or illness, such as a surgery or medical procedure. You must use accrued personal leave or take the time unpaid for the first 40 hours.
These benefits are not automatic. You must fill out the insurance company’s application and submit documentation of your disability from your doctor. If approved, STD pays 70% of your eligible earnings for up to 180 consecutive days. You can use personal leave to make up the other 30 percent and receive a full paycheck.
Long-term disability follows short-term disability benefits, and if approved, begins after you are totally disabled for 180 consecutive days.
The District automatically provides core coverage - equal to 60% of your eligible earnings. You may elect to purchase an LTD buy up option that pays 66 and 2/3 percent of your eligible earnings. You can do this when you are enrolling for benefits on the PeopleSoft system. No evidence of good health is required.
There is a maximum monthly benefit of $5,000. For this reason, anyone who earns over $100,000 annually should skip the buy-up option. You may receive LTD benefits until you turn 65, or up to 3 and-a-half years if your disability starts after age 60. The insurance company will pay for disabilities due to mental illness, alcohol, or drugs for up to 24 months.