When you fell down and scraped your knee as a kid, you could wipe away your tears and be back on the monkey bars within minutes. As an adult, it’s not always that easy. Sometimes an injury puts you down and keeps you there — at least for a while.
When you need some time to recover from an accident or illness, it helps to have a way to supplement your income. But what qualifies for short-term disability insurance?
What Is Short-Term Disability Insurance?
Any medical condition that keeps you from working can be considered a disability. This means that short-term disability can apply to any injury or illness that temporarily puts you out of work, whether it was sustained on the job or not. This includes accidents as well as chronic conditions.
Policy details will vary from plan to plan, but benefits usually cover up to 60 percent of your income, meaning the insurance can be a lifesaver as you recover. Benefits typically kick in within two weeks of you leaving work, and coverage may last anywhere from 9 to 52 weeks. Pay close attention to that window — if you’re going to be out of work longer, you might need a long-term disability plan.
How Do I Get Short-Term Disability Insurance?
While you can buy a short-term disability insurance privately, see if your employer offers it at a discount as a benefit. Ask whether they will require you to use sick days before your coverage begins, and whether they’ll want a doctor to confirm that you can’t fulfill your workplace responsibilities.
What qualifies for short-term disability insurance may also differ from what’s included in your company’s workers’ compensation policy, which is more likely to apply to workplace injuries specifically.
Injuries and illnesses don’t have to put your life or your earnings at a standstill. Short-term disability coverage can offer the support you need to recover and get back on those monkey bars.