Whether it is a planned life event, a sudden illness or an injury, an employee may need to take a leave from work. Employees considering taking a leave should understand the commonly confused short term disability (STD) and Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) benefits. Short term disability STD is not an employee leave; rather it is a wage replacement benefit. The benefit can be purchase by the employee through their employer benefits company of through a private vendor. STD benefits act as income replacement when an employee is unable to work for a period of time. The coverage can last for a few weeks to upwards of 52 weeks depending on the employee’s policy. Although STD is a wage replacement benefit, typically employees only receive 40-60 percent of their regular wages. Unlike other forms of employee leave, STD benefits are not guaranteed job protection and continuing health care coverage is not assured. Eligibility for STD benefits has no impact on eligibility for FMLA leave.
Justin C. Frankel is committed to fighting for the rights of clients when their long term disability insurance claims have been denied, delayed or terminated.