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LTD Waiting Period

GreyEagleGGreyEagle Posts: 350
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:22 AM in Health Insurance Issues
I've used up my STD for a rolling 12 month period. I have major cervical spine surgery coming up soon. I do qualify for and have been approved for Long Term Disability thru my employer.

My problem is my STD expires Sept 1st and my Long Term Disability pay does not kick in until November 30th. That is 3 months without pay. It does create a hardship for us as a family.
I sent an email to our HR to see if there are other sources of pay between now and then.

Anyway, I wanted to share this here. Have others of you had this kind of situation?

Thanks much,

Ken GreyEagle


  • I have never heard of such a lapse between STD and LTD. I wonder if you might qualify for food stamps and maybe some other help like that for the three months? With the price of food nowadays I am sure that would help alot. Sorry but that is the only idea that I could come up with. I did not have STD, only LTD and also had to go three months no income. I ended up having to cash in a small 401 K fund I had on a hardship basis so that I would not have to pay penalty. Good luck and please keep us posted.
  • My company doesn't have STD, only our leave that we earn, then LTD kicks in after 6 months after you've been off from work and used your leave up. I checked with my HR and benefits folks and there is nothing for us either. They suggested a leave donation program if I get to where I need that where people donate their leave to you, but I can't imagine getting 6 months donated to you. I would be stuck as you are on leave without pay or nothing until LTD kicked in.

    From what I've read about LTD, it's really hard to get and stay qualified for. They do offer a STD program that you can pay for on the side but it's very high dollar and there's a pre-existing condition clause.

    Most employees don't realize what they don't have until something like happens and then we are shocked that our company isn't looking out for us. It's sad.

    We have a disability retirement at 30% of your pay, then when LTD might kick in 6 mos later, you'd get another 35% added.

    You should apply for anything and everything that is offered at your Social Security office including SSD because most LTDs don't pay your full salary only a bit.

    I hope things work out for you. I haven't had to face that hurdle yet as I'm one week back at work after 8 weeks off having surgery, but everyday I'm not sure how long I can last. I hope my back gets better with time and I can continue being tough enough to make it thru.

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  • Ken, I, too, am sorry to hear of your dilemma with STD/LTD lapse in payment. I'm sure that's adding stress on you that you really don't need!

    I'm not sure how either of those work because I didn't have those with my employer, but I wanted to comment on a couple things Melisa suggested.

    First, she's absolutely right...go to your Department of Human Services (welfare office-not sure what it's called in your state) office and apply for assistance. You might be eligible for cash payment, food benefits, or even medical coverage and they have to make a decision within 30 days by law.

    As far as applying for Social Security Disability, I also think that's a good idea, but you have to have either been off work for a year, or have a doctor that will say you will need to be off work for at least one year before you can even be considered. Keeping that in mind, it's also most likely going to take you at least 2 years to be approved, if you are. Pretty much everyone is denied the first time around, and if that is the case, that is the time when you need to hire an atty that specializes in SSDI. I'm currently awaiting my appeal hearing and I applied 3 years ago. It's a very slow process, but if you're eligible to apply, then make sure you do it as soon as possible! And never, ever back down...keep on them! They WANT you to give up and walk away...don't let them have the satisfaction.

    Also, it's possible that churches in your area could help you out, or if you have a Salvation Army or other Community Action Agency in your area you might be able to get some help from them. Your local welfare office should have info on all such places in your area, but you could check the yellow pages as well.

    I wish you the very best of luck and hope you get something to help you soon!

    Please keep us posted, and take care of you...
  • Thanks for your comments everyone! Thanks so much EMT for what you suggested.

    One problem I've had in the past in terms of applying thru our local government for food stamps, etc. is my wife makes too much money for me to qualify. Now, my son who is 28 yrs old lives with us currently.

    Our son is looking for work, is getting food stamps and helping us with those. So that helps. The SSDI I'll look into if it appears I won't be able to go back to work. I don't know. I have type 2 diabetes, hypertension, facing ACDF on at least one level it looks like. I'm 56 yrs old. So, I don't know what complications might occur after surgery.

    Anyway, thanks much. Our daughter has Multiple Sclerosis. She is 31 yrs old. It took her 3 yrs I think to finally get permanent disability thru SSDI. She lives with us with her husband and our two grandsons also right now. Full house.

    I'd do anything to take the multiple sclerosis off her and take it on myself. It breaks my heart to see my own child have that disease.

    Well, thanks so much for your sharing and suggestions.

    Ken GreyEagle
  • I'm not familiar with your ST/LT disability and whether you are talking about a private benefit program or a state/federal benefit program.

    The federal SSI waiting period is 5 months from the date of disability as explained to me by the SSI officer at the local SS office. So you will get retroactive payment (the application process is 1-2 months of review). At least my state (CA) the state disability insurance waiting period is only 1 or 2 weeks.

    If when you say your ST disability has run out (and you mean through your insurer) do try your state disability. If I misunderstood, sorry.
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  • Well, I will receive my first STD check approximately Dec 26, a full month check. It will be more than enough monthly to meet our family needs, along with my wifes income.

    This LTD is thru my employer, an insurance Company they selected specializing in LTD Insurance. That Company sent me a packet, including sign up for automatic deposit to my bank. They also advised I start the process of applying for SSDI. They will do most of the footwork for me. They say that if I am approved then I should not have a break in income when I transition from LTD to SSDI, if that becomes necessary.

    So I will do so.

    It sure will be nice to go from zero income to a tolerable income once again. I am very thankful my wife has had a secure job and income for about 10 years now with no prospects of losing her job in the near future.

    The industry I work in and the specific Company also continues to thrive. So we are thankful.

    I figure also that with these kinds of surgeries it is not uncommon to end up with multiple surgeries, permanent nerve damage and sometimes permanent disability.

    Thanks for all your input, guys!

    Ken GreyEagle
  • I have the same I had short term for 15 weeks. Then Employment Government benefits for 15 weeks. Now I'm on LTD. So maybe Canada is different but you should call your unemployment benefits and you'll get that with no waiting period. Kind of broke for awhile and had to live on line of credit but with LTD things are better. Good luck. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • What is interesting to me is my LTD Company also sent a brochure on the SSDI Disability details and encouraged applying for SSDI. When I called my Claims Manager though she said she would only have me apply for SSDI if it became clear I was going to be disabled for one year or more.

    That might happen. I have no idea. My Claims Manager seems to think it is a real possibility. Maybe because I have diabetes, I am 56 yrs old and my over all diagnosis. I don't know for sure. All I can do is wait and see.

    Ken GreyEagle
  • you to get your SSDI because they will reduce your monthly payments by your SSDI payment amount. So, they pay less when you collect your SSDI.
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