On Disability: Defining What This Means For People NOT On Disability

Posted on: 13 November 2017

At some point you may have heard someone say, that they're "on disability." What does that mean, exactly? If you are not aware of it, there are actually several different types of disability insurance, so hearing this tends to blur the lines between the types.

Is this person on Social Security Disability? Short-term or long-term disability through work? What about private disability insurance? When dealing with those who claim to be on disability, and needing proof of income, you have to ask what type of disability benefits they mean. If you, yourself, need disability benefits, do you know which to apply for and which you need to file a claim for? Did you also know that you will eventually need a disability lawyer if you expect to receive your benefits or you need to file suit against the insurance company? To uncomplicate things, here are several definitions of disability insurance and what a private disability insurance lawyer can and cannot do for you.

Short-Term/Long-Term Disability Insurance (Usually Part of Your Death and Dismemberment Coverage)

This is part of many employees' benefit packages. It is entirely optional, but if you feel that any aspect of your job might put you in a position where you might have to be out of work for a while, it is good to have. It also is good to have if you plan on becoming pregnant, as the delivery of your baby counts as a short-term disabling condition. You do have to fill out the paperwork and give it to your company's HR person at the time your condition begins.

Benefits do not start until a three-week waiting period has passed, so it is very important to get that paperwork in as soon as possible. Benefits are typically paid out at the rate of approximately two-thirds of your usual rate of pay, which will only help you with the minimal amount of bills. Additionally, this type of disability insurance only pays for three to six weeks of short-term benefits and up to twelve weeks of "long-term" benefits, so you will need to plan ahead.

Private Disability Insurance

Private disability insurance is often offered by industrial and manufacturing companies, given to employees in work positions where dangers and risks are very high. Only 30% of American workers have this type of insurance, and very few ever use it. It is paid for by the employers and is a perk of the employee benefit package. If you become disabled in the line of work, the insurance pays out on your claim for up to two years. Regular check-ups with a doctor are required to prove that you have an ongoing disability that qualifies you for continued payment of benefits.

If your benefits stop, or your employer denies you further benefits when it is clear that you should still receive them, you will need a lawyer to help you. It should be a lawyer who is well-versed in private disability insurance laws for your state, and not a Social Security Disability lawyer. These are two totally different types of law practice, as you will soon see.

Social Security Disability

These are disability benefits offered by the federal government. They are difficult to get, and you may not to get your claim through on the first pass. This type of insurance also needs a lawyer fighting in your corner, or you may have to go through several appeals processes before you will see a dime.

What a Private Disability Insurance Lawyer Can and Cannot Do

Private disability insurance lawyers can get you private disability funds. They cannot get you Social Security Disability. The laws governing these two types of disability are different. If you are pursing the latter, you need a Social Security Disability lawyer instead. Otherwise, if you are pursuing the former, you can use the services and knowledge of the private disability lawyer, which you can discover more about here.