Disability and Absence Services

Disability Insurance

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Disability Insurance

Disability insurance offers an affordable way to protect your income when you are unable to work due to illness or injury. Accidents and injury can happen to anyone, and it can impact your ability to earn money.

35.5% of the population with disabilities is between the ages of 18 and 64. That’s why financial experts recommend disability insurance as part of a sound financial plan.

What is disability insurance?

Why is having Disability insurance important?
If you are unable to work due to illness or injury, disability insurance can help pay your most important expenses. These include: Mortgage or rent, car payments, food, child care/tuition and utilities.

Short Term Disability Insurance replaces a portion of your income during a disability which could last up to 180 days. Having disability protection can help you cover your essential living expenses and help safeguard your savings, since it replaces a portion of your income lost due to a disability or illness. 

Long Term Disability Insurance replaces a portion of your income during a disability that is expected to last for an extended period of longer than 180 days.

While many people think that disabilities are typically caused by accidents, the majority of long term absences are actually due to illness.* A good rule of thumb is to protect 60-80% of your after-tax income. This will help you meet your most important financial needs.

Both plans offer:

  • Direct payments: receive a portion of your salary paid directly to you if you are unable to work after satisfying the initial Elimination Period. (Short Term Disability benefits pay weekly, while Long Term Disability benefits pay monthly.)
  • Easy claims filing: Report claims online or by phone
  • Competitive rates: This group coverage is offered only through your employer

How does the plan work?

MetLife offers various ways to submit a claim based on your plan, including online, mail and phone options. Plus, you can track the status of your claim online or on the MetLife US App. Search “MetLife” on ITunes App Store or Google Play to download the app.

As one of the nation’s leading providers of disability benefits, you can count on MetLife to provide you with caring, compassionate and accurate claims service, if and when you experience a disability.

While you are on an approved disability, payments will be made directly to you – not your employer, hospital, doctor or insurance company. The amount of payment will depend on the amount of coverage you choose.

Plan Details

Life has changed, but the need to protect and provide for loved ones has not.

Useful Documents

Disability Insurance FAQs

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It is best to enroll during your open enrollment period, when medical exams may not be required, and health questions may not be asked. The sooner you enroll, the sooner you will enjoy the added financial protection that disability coverage provides.

Disability insurance is more affordable than you may think. For example, a healthy male age 35 may get a $1,000 monthly benefit for an initial premium of about $25 a month. Rates for your plan can be found in the enrollment materials provided by your employer.

Premiums will be conveniently paid through payroll deduction, so you don’t have to worry about writing a check or missing a payment.

You can submit a claim via phone, web or mail. The Claim Specialist will verify eligibility and medical information, in addition to conducting an interview with the claimant to obtain relevant information, review plan provisions and explain next steps. From the review, the specialist will determine if the claimant qualifies for benefits under the plan and will notify all parties of the decision. Once all information is received, we will make a decision in about a week.

The Claims Specialist will then identify a time frame for follow-up based on diagnosis, treatment and prognosis and evaluate expected duration with an anticipated return to work date. 

STD claims already with MetLife will automatically transition to LTD, there is no need for an additional claim application. Information will be automatically transferred and updated.

MetLife will also provide Social Security Application assistance and support.

Payment will be made directly to you – not your employer, hospital, doctor or insurance company. The amount of the payment will depend on the amount of coverage you choose.

Yes. As long as you are disabled and meet the terms of your Disability plan, you may qualify for adjusted Disability benefits.

Your plan offers financial and Rehabilitation incentives designed to help you to return to work when appropriate, even on a part-time basis when you participate in an approved Rehabilitation Program.

While disabled, you may receive up to 100% of your predisability earnings when combining benefits for up to 24 months, Rehabilitation Incentives, other income sources such as Social Security Disability Benefits and state disability benefits, and part-time earnings. (Please note – the Social Security Disability Benefit assistance is only offered if you are approved for LTD benefits). 

Under Short Term Disability coverage and Long Term Disability coverage you can get a 10% increase in your weekly benefit with the Rehabilitation Incentive.

If you work or participate in a rehabilitation program while disabled, following the 4th weekly benefit payment, the Family Care Incentive provides reimbursement up to $100 per week for eligible expenses, such as child care. Under Long Term Disabilityif you work or participate in a rehabilitation program while disabled, the Family Care Incentive provides reimbursement up to $400 per month for eligible expenses, such as child care for up to 24 months.

You may be eligible for the Moving Expense Incentive if you incur expenses in order to move to a new residence recommended as part of the Rehabilitation Program. Expenses must be approved in advance.

Yes. Your plan may not cover a sickness or accidental injury that arose in the months prior to your participation in the plan. A complete description of the pre-existing condition exclusion is included in the Certificate of Insurance provided by your Employer or contact your MetLife benefits administrator with any questions.

Yes. Under Short Term Disability, your plan does not cover any Disability which results from or is caused or contributed to by:

  • Elective treatment or procedures, such as cosmetic surgery, sex-change surgery, reversal of sterilization, liposuction, visual correction surgery, in-vitro fertilization, embryo transfer procedure, artificial insemination or other specific procedures.

However, pregnancies and complications from any of these procedures will be treated as a sickness. 

Under Short Term and Long Term Disability coverage, your plan does not cover any Disability which results from or is caused or contributed to by:

  • War, whether declared or undeclared, or act of war, insurrection, rebellion or terrorist act;
  • Active participation in a riot;
  • Intentionally self-inflicted injury or attempted suicide;
  • Commission of or attempt to commit a felony. 

Additionally, no payment will be made for a Disability caused or contributed to by any injury or sickness for which you are entitled to benefits under Workers’ Compensation or a similar law.

For Long Term Disability, limited benefits apply for specific conditions: 

If you are disabled due to alcohol, drug or substance abuse or addiction, we will limit your disability benefits to one occurrence for a lifetime maximum of Disability for 24 months. During Your Disability, we require you to participate in an alcohol, drug or substance abuse or addiction recovery program recommended by a physician.

Benefits will end at the earliest of

  • The date you receive 24 months of disability benefit payments;
  • The date you cease or refuse to participate in the recovery program referred above; or
  • The date you complete such recovery program.

If you are disabled due to mental or nervous disorders or diseases; neuromuscular, musculoskeletal or soft tissue disorder; fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome and related conditions or self-reported conditions, we will limit your Disability benefits to a lifetime maximum equal to the lesser of:

  • 24 months; or
  • The Maximum Benefit Period.

Your Disability benefits will be limited as stated above for mental or nervous disorder or disease except for:

  • schizophrenia;
  • neurocognitive disorders; or
  • bi-polar 1 disorder

If you are disabled due to neuromuscular, musculoskeletal or soft tissue disorder, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome and related conditions or self-reported conditions, we will limit your Disability benefits to one occurrence for a lifetime maximum equal to the lesser of:

  • 24months; or
  • The Maximum Benefit Period.

If You are confined in a Hospital or Mental Health Facility at the end of the period shown above for which benefits are to be paid, We will continue Your Monthly Benefits until the end of Your Hospital or Mental Health Facility confinement.

Other limitations or exclusions to your coverage may apply. Please review your Certificate of Insurance provided by your Employer for specific details or contact your benefits administrator with any questions.

How much disability insurance should you have?

Disability Calculator

Tony hurt his back

If serious injury or illness keeps you from working, disability insurance may help you maintain your quality of life while recovering.

The “Plan Benefits” provides only a brief overview of the LTD and STD plans. A more complete description of the benefits provisions, conditions, limitations, and exclusions will be included in the Certificate of Insurance. If any discrepancies exist between this information and the legal plan documents, the legal plan documents will govern.

Long Term Disability (“LTD”) and Short Term Disability (“STD”) coverages are provided under a group insurance policy (Form GPNP99) issued to your employer by MetLife. This LTD and STD coverages terminates when your employment ceases, when you cease to be an eligible employee, when your LTD and STD contributions cease (if applicable) or upon termination of the group contract by your employer. Like most group insurance policies, MetLife’s group policies contain certain exclusions, elimination periods, reductions, limitations and terms for keeping them in force. State variations may apply.