When you sign up for short-term or long-term disability insurance through your employer, you’re taking an important step to protect yourself and your family’s financial well-being if you suffer an injury or illness that requires time away from work. Many people don’t read the fine print on these policies because they only amount to a few extra dollars a month added to their benefits package. They don’t think about them until they need them. Then, their terms can make all the difference.
One key element to look for in a disability insurance policy is a “waiver of premium for disability.” It means that if a person becomes seriously disabled, they don’t have to pay their insurance premium if they’re unable to do so. Without this waiver, a person may not be able to keep up the insurance coverage they need to provide compensation while they’re unable to work.
What you should know about your insurer’s waiver
Even if your policy has this waiver, it’s crucial to look further to get the answers to some questions. For example:
- Exactly how disabled do you have to be for the waiver to apply?
- If you have to be “totally disabled,” how is that defined?
- How long will the insurer waive the premium?
- Does the coverage cost more with the waiver than without it?
If your policy has a waiver and you qualified for it, but you continued to pay your premiums during that period, you should be able to get a refund for that amount.
If you believe that you or a loved one was wrongly denied disability insurance benefits based on nonpayment on a policy that contains a waiver of premium for disability, it’s wise to seek the guidance of an experienced attorney.