As the COVID-19 pandemic has illustrated, many Americans are wholly unprepared to go without a job or even a single paycheck. Many depended on the government stepping in to provide stimulus funds, emergency paid sick leave, and expanded unemployment benefits as a safety net in the aftermath of widespread and sudden job loss, decreased hours, school closures, and illness. This situation proves how vulnerable Americans can be when they operate without any sort of safety net. When workers go without long-term disability insurance, they may have no safety net if illness or injury renders them suddenly disabled and unable to work. For many, the loss of a job and the inability to work spells utter financial disaster.
According to a recent Forbes article, one in four American adults have a disability that significantly affects major life activities. Having a disability drastically decreases the likelihood of people having a job. Government safety nets, like Social Security disability benefits, are not widely and immediately available. Substantial delays in the awards of these benefits are common, which puts suddenly disabled workers in a position in which they may be unable to pay their bills.
Many companies offer long-term disability benefits to their workers through group plans that are inexpensive or even free for workers. These benefits plans offer a valuable safety net for these workers. Still, self-employed individuals and others without this coverage are missing out on this form of financial compensation if they become disabled and unable to work.
However, even in the best plans, benefits may be limited. Most plans replace only 50 to 70% of workers’ income, which could result in individuals receiving only half their regular salaries. Furthermore, strict provisions in group disability plans also can limit available disability benefits substantially. For example:
• Rigid definitions of disability may not make everyone eligible for benefits
• Total benefits payouts based on salary may be limited
• Many plans limit benefits for addiction or mental illnesses that lead to disability
• Receiving other benefits, such as Social Security, offset or decrease the amount of disability benefits paid out
These are only a few of the many limitations on disability plans, and particularly on group plans. Individuals who purchase policies on their own may pay more in premiums, but they often benefit from individualized choices that group policyholders cannot access.
Bonnici Law Group has the experience and knowledge you need when fighting for the long-term disability benefits that you deserve. We know how to help you create and maintain a strong claim for benefits, appeal the denial of benefits, and obtain the best outcome possible in your case. Do not hesitate to contact Bonnici Law Group at 619-259-5199 or firstname.lastname@example.org.