Disability – Full-Time and Part-Time
 

Continuation of Benefit Payments

The Short-Term Disability Plan’s maximum benefit payment period for any one disability is 11 weeks for Core STD benefits, and 12 weeks for optional STD benefits. This is explained under How the Short-Term Disability (STD) Plan Works

There is a limit on how long the Long-Term Disability (LTD) Plan will continue to pay benefits. Special rules also apply for disabilities resulting from mental illness (see explanation below). 

The balance of this section describes the LTD Plan’s provisions for continuation of benefit payments.

TERMINATION OF LTD BENEFIT PAYMENTS
Your LTD benefit payments will continue until the earliest of the following dates: 

  • the date that you cease to be disabled, as defined by the plan (see “Definition of Disability” under the Long-Term Disability section);
  • the date that you fail to provide required proof of your continuing disability, or fail to cooperate with the Insurance Company in the administration of your claim;
  • the date that your earnings from any occupation exceed the amount allowable by the plan;
  • the date that you are no longer receiving care that is considered appropriate by the Insurance Company;
  • the end of the maximum payment period (as described below); or
  • the date that you refuse to participate in a rehabilitation program that the Insurance Company considers appropriate. 

MAXIMUM PAYMENT PERIOD
If you become disabled before age 61, your LTD Plan payments will continue until the later of

  • the date you reach your Social Security Normal Retirement Age; or
  • the date that you receive 60 months of LTD Plan benefit payments (or the date you reach your 65th birthday, if later). 

If you become disabled at age 61 or later, your LTD Plan benefit payments will continue until the later of

  • the date you reach your Social Security Normal Retirement Age; or
  • the date you reach the maximum benefit period. As shown in the table below, the length of this period will depend on your age at the time you become disabled: 
Your Age on Date Disability Begins Maximum Benefit Period
age 61 The date the 48th monthly benefit is payable
age 62 The date the 42nd monthly benefit is payable
age 63 The date the 36th monthly benefit is payable
age 64 The date the 30th monthly benefit is payable
age 65 The date the 24th monthly benefit is payable
age 66 The date the 21st monthly benefit is payable
age 67 The date the 18th monthly benefit is payable
age 68 The date the 15th monthly benefit is payable
69 and over The date the 12th monthly benefit is payable

MENTAL ILLNESS OR SUBSTANCE ABUSE
LTD Plan benefits for one or more of the following conditions are limited to a lifetime maximum of 24 months of payment. 

  • anxiety disorders;
  • delusional (paranoid) disorders;
  • depressive disorders;
  • eating disorders;
  • mental illness;
  • psychosomatic illness; or
  • substance (alcohol or drug) abuse 

Hospital Confinement
A hospital confinement of more than 14 consecutive days due to the above disorder(s) will not count towards the 24-month lifetime payment limit. 

Maximum Benefit Period
Benefits for mental illness or substance abuse may not extend beyond the maximum benefit period described in the table shown in the Continuation of Benefit Payments section. For example, a covered person who is age 68 on the date that a disability due to a mental illness begins would be eligible for up to 15 months of LTD Plan benefit payments. 

REFUSAL OF REHABILITATION
As explained under Rehabilitation Benefits in the Long-Term Disability section, your participation in a rehabilitation program that is approved by the Insurance Company will not reduce your LTD Plan benefits. If the Insurance Company requests that you participate in a rehabilitation program and you refuse to do so, your LTD Plan payments may be terminated. 

RECOVERY FROM DISABILITY
Your LTD Plan payments will end as of the date that you recover from your disability. However, the following rules will apply if you return to work in your regular occupation and become disabled again: 

  • Your LTD plan benefit payments will be treated as part of your prior claim if:
    • you return to work in your regular occupation for six months or less;
    • you again become disabled due to a successive disability as described in the Long-Term Disability section; and
    • you earn less than the percentage of Indexed Earnings that would qualify you as disabled under the terms of the plan during at least one month (see the definition of disability above).
  • Your current disability will be treated as a new claim if:
    • you return to work in your regular occupation for more than six months; or
    • your second disability is due to an unrelated cause (i.e., a cause that is not related to the illness or injury that caused your first disability). 
You should notify Human Resourcesand the Insurance Company immediately if you are able to return to work.