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Can you look to short-term disability post-surgery? - II

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Can you look to short-term disability post-surgery_ - II(1).png

Last week we began discussing how anyone needing surgery shouldn't overlook their short-term disability policy. It can provide much-need support should a procedure sideline someone for weeks or months.

We also discussed that this financial lifeline isn't a guarantee. Short-term disability policies won't cover surgical recovery unless certain requirements are met.

Elimination period

Private short-term disability insurance will not cover surgical recovery unless the policyholder satisfies the elimination period. No benefits will be paid until an applicable waiting period passes.

Consider a short-term disability policy with a 90-day elimination period. Here, the policyholder's recuperation must last longer than 90 days in order for policy benefits to begin start.

Experts say policyholders need a good idea of the timeframe for their recovery. If claimants know they will fall short of satisfying the elimination period, they can plan accordingly.

Elective surgery

Most would assume that recovery from elective surgery wouldn't be covered by short-term disability insurance. However, elective surgery is defined as a non-emergency, scheduled procedure. In other words, it isn't automatically deemed unnecessary.

Consider elective weight loss surgery such as gastric bypass. If the procedure addresses a physical symptom (respiratory issues, high blood pressure, etc.), coverage may be possible. However, if the procedure is undertaken to feel better or improve confidence, the surgical recovery period may not be covered.

Source: Growing Family Benefits, "Does short-term disability insurance cover surgery recovery?" Kevin Haney, May 25, 2016

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