For many people who have disability insurance, whether it be through an employer or through an individual, private policy, it is asking a lot for them to understand every point about their policies. Many might most simply understand that if they get sick or injured and are unable to work, a disability claim would get them monetary benefits that would support them through unemployment.
However, as a Wall Street Journal piece addresses, there is more to some disability insurance plans than that. Some injured or ill workers can claim financial benefits even if they continue to work. The following are some examples of how disability insurance can help some people in surprising ways:
Same hours, less productivity
A worker who gets injured or sick but is able to return to work despite that setback might be eligible to receive benefits. Maybe a worker's injury or illness doesn't keep him from doing his job but it does keep him from being as productive as he used to be. Residual benefits mean that a worker can supplement his reduced income at an 80 percent rate of his pre-disability income.
Time away, fewer clients
No matter how much a worker's customers might love him, if he is out of work for too long they might need to seek help elsewhere in order to protect their own best interests. A worker whose disability hasn't kept him from eventually returning from work but means he's returning to a smaller client pool might be able to receive benefits to supplement his less-than-ordinary income. These are referred to as recovery benefits.
Disability insurance claims are as complicated as they are important to those whose livelihoods depend on them. Our disability lawyers provide guidance for those who want to better understand their policies and can help answer questions about what they are entitled to.
Source: The Wall Street Journal, "Hidden Disability Benefits," Ellen E. Schultz, Feb. 12, 2013