This document describes benefits provided to regular, full-time employees under long-term disability insurance.
Long-term disability insurance benefits include:
Each is described in the sections that follow.
Note: There is no provision for medical care costs under long-term disability insurance. However, Research Foundation health, dental, vision, and life insurance benefits may be continued based on certain criteria and eligibility requirements (explained in the Benefits Handbook). Coverage is continuous from the time an employee ends New York State Disability and begins long-term disability, provided the employee has been approved for long-term disability.
First Reliance Standard Life Insurance (First Reliance) provides partial income replacement benefits to employees with a certified total disability. The maximum benefit an employee may receive is 60 percent of his or her regular monthly salary, up to $7,500 per month. The minimum benefit allowance is $100 per month.
Monthly salary is one-twelfth of an employee's projected annual salary at the time the employee becomes unable to work because of the disability. Overtime, bonuses and other forms of compensation are not included in the calculation of monthly salary.
A long term disability participant's monthly benefit will increase each year after payments have begun. The increase will equal the lesser of the percentage change in the Consumer Price Index or 3 percent.
First Reliance will provide employees with a maximum of 24 months of benefit payments for a total disability due to substance abuse (drugs and/or alcohol) while the insured is participating in a Substance Abuse Rehabilitation Program.
First Reliance provides employees with rehabilitation benefits to aid recovery and return to work. Rehabilitative employment must be supervised by a physician or certified rehabilitation specialist approved by First Reliance.
If an employee is vested in the basic retirement plan at the time of disability, First Reliance will coordinate with the Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association (TIAA) to make contributions to the person's annuity contract while the person is receiving long-term disability benefits.
Benefits are not paid if the total disability is due to sickness or injury resulting from war (declared or undeclared), from intentionally self-inflicted injury, or from committing a felony.
Benefit payments for a certified long-term disability begin on the first day following six consecutive months of a total disability, or when full-time sick leave benefits end, whichever comes later. Monthly income replacement payments are made directly to the disabled employee by First Reliance.
The 60 percent of monthly salary payment is reduced by any income an employee receives from any other group disability income insurance, Workers' Compensation, actual or estimated Social Security or other government disability benefits, retirement income benefits, or sick leave benefits. The First Reliance disability benefit is also reduced if, at any time an employee's current First Reliance benefit, in combination with any other group disability benefit for which an employee is eligible, exceeds 70 percent of his or her regular monthly salary.
Note: Since New York State Disability continues for six months following the employee's exhaustion of sick leave accruals, an employee could simultaneously collect long-term disability and New York State Disability benefits.
There is a five-month waiting period from the start of the disability before employees become eligible for Social Security disability benefits. Employees must apply for Social Security when applying for long-term disability benefits. First Reliance provides employees with assistance in obtaining this benefit.
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