Long-term disability insurance policies are often an important part of an employee benefits package. Your employer may offer supplemental disability coverage as a perk of employment. Alternatively, they may have a group plan that you can buy into for cheaper than a policy obtained on your own.
People often don’t understand the difference between those private disability insurance policies and workers’ compensation. They may apply the rules from one program to their expectations of the other. Some people might assume, for example, that a work-related disability policy will only apply to job-related medical conditions. Do you have the right to make a disability claim if you get hurt outside of work?
Disability insurance reflects your medical condition, not how you got hurt
Workers’ compensation benefits are only available for medical conditions caused by employment or injuries suffered at work. However, long-term disability insurance coverage through a private insurer can apply to anyone unable to work because of a disabling medical condition.
You could claim disability benefits from your work-sponsored policy if you get hurt at work or injured in a car crash. You can also claim disability benefits for a medical condition like cancer or multiple sclerosis that eventually leaves you unable to work.
The cause of your medical condition will not impact your right to benefits. The main consideration will be the impact of the medical condition on your ability to work. Learning more about your rights when you have long-term disability insurance through your employer can help you get as much compensation as possible while you cannot work for health-related reasons.