Can I Get Long Term Disability If I’m a BC Government Employee?
For many in British Columbia, long term disability coverage could be a lifesaver. Disability insurance provides many with coverage for long-term or permanent injuries. These policies are common among private employers. For public employees, however, coverage is not always as easy to come by.
While long term disability insurance is available for public employees, there is a series of qualifications they must meet. Even when benefits are available, insurance companies will go to great lengths to avoid responsibility for a claim. One common tactic involves denying a claim due to a clerical error during filing. Preszler Injury Lawyers is a long term disability law firm that can guide you through the claim-filing process.
Availability for government employees
For regular employees, there are several requirements that must be met before long term disability is available. While benefits are available for some part-time workers, your position must be at least half-time to qualify. Additionally, you must have at least six months of active service to file a claim.
In addition to those technical requirements, there are also some other guidelines to be aware of. For starters, you cannot simply file for long term disability. For these benefits to be available, you must have completed at least six months of short term illness plan benefits. If you receive short term benefits for at least six months without your condition improving, you could be eligible for long term benefits.
During the course of receiving short term benefits, you must remain under the regular care of a doctor. If you fail to seek medical treatment or do not follow their recommendations, it could prevent you from seeking additional disability benefits. The insurance companies will stop benefits if they believe you are not actively working to get better.
You should also have ample evidence to support your claim. Of course, if you are not familiar with the process of filing a long term disability claim, it can be difficult to determine what is sufficient. An experienced lawyer at Preszler Injury Lawyers can assist you in preparing a claim along with the evidence needed to support it.
The claim filing process
There is a tight deadline to file for long term disability benefits; if you wait until your short term benefits expire, you have waited too long. Your application for long term disability is due at least 8 weeks prior to the end of your short term illness and injury benefits. There are also portions of the application that must be completed by your doctor; you must return that completed no more than four weeks after short term benefits come to an end. The doctor’s part of the application will include your test results, x-rays, and other medical records, among other things.
If you do not file your claim within that window of time, the insurer will assume you have abandoned it and intend to return to work. The plan administrator does have the power to allow your claim to continue if you miss this deadline, but you will need to demonstrate you had good cause for missing it.
Responsibilities for government employees on long term disability
If your claim is accepted, there are certain guidelines you must comply with. The failure to do so could result in the termination of your benefits. These requirements include:
- Making an honest effort to recover from your injury or illness
- To remain under the care of a doctor
- To complete the prescribed treatment from your care provider
- Provide your insurer with any information they request regarding your injury or treatment
- Comply with rehabilitation plans and return-to-work trials as requested
- Remain in contact with your work supervisor and any other relevant employees
By following these guidelines, you protect yourself from an unexpected revocation of your long term disability benefits.
How Preszler Injury Lawyers could help with your claim
Some insurers will reject a long term disability claim even when you follow the application process to the letter. When that happens, reach out to Preszler Injury Lawyers, a personal injury law firm with a long track record of success. Our team is dedicated to helping injured government employees recover the benefits they need during their recovery. Schedule your free consultation right away.