Short term disability benefits rarely last more than 12 months. Unfortunately, the illness or injury that forced you out of work for an extended period will not stick to a deadline.
You have three basic options when your short term disability payments run out before you are healthy enough to resume working. An experienced and knowledgeable short-term disability attorney can help you consider and act on each.
This can be the toughest solution, but it should also be the first one you try. Companies and insurers cap short term disability to save money and to get people back on the job. Neither is inclined to extend payments past a fixed end date, but exceptions to the general policy do get made.
Working with a Columbus disability attorney to identify, complete, and file all the necessary paperwork makes sense. Reflective of their desire not to extend benefits, companies, and insurers can make the procedures for requesting extensions opaque and complicated.
A legal advisor and ally can also help you make the case for an extension by assisting with the collection and presentation of medical evidence showing that only a few weeks or months are needed to return to health and work.
SSDI is available to people who have paid into the federal Social Security program through payroll deductions known as F.I.C.A. To qualify for SSDI benefits, an adult must suffer from a physical or mental condition that will keep him or her out of work for a year or longer. The condition must also make taking a job different from the one the person previously held impossible.
Ohioans who have not participated in Social Security because they worked for a state agency or a public school system can have long term disability program under a program such as the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System, State Teachers Retirement System, or School Employees Retirement System. These public pension and disability programs usually require applying to SSDI first when a potential beneficiary has worked outside the public sector.
Contacting an Ohio short term disability attorney as soon as it becomes clear that returning to work will not be possible is recommended. Going through the SSDI or public retirement system disability process can take months. Rejections of initial applications for long term disability benefits are common, and multiple appeals are often necessary. Preventing a lag between the expiration of short-term benefits and the start of long-term benefits can require starting early.
Exercising this option can be difficult when you are already on short term disability. That does not mean finding a plan that offers coverage of medical expenses, assisted living or home health care, and income replacement cannot be done. A short term disability attorney can help you sort through plan details to identify the one that best meets your needs and budget. Enlisting the assistance of a lawyer will also make it easier to deal with insurance company representatives who want to deny claims.
The short term disability attorneys in the Columbus, Ohio, offices of Agee Clymer Mitchell & Portman offer free consultations throughout the state. We also travel to clients when their health prevents them from coming to us. Appointments can be scheduled by calling (614) 678-3318 or filling out this online contact form.