Can I Return to Work Part-Time and Still Receive Individual or Group Long-Term Disability Benefits?
Generally, your long-term disability insurance exists to replace your income if you can’t work because of a disabling illness or injury. Most individual or group long-term disability beneficiaries are completely disabled from their current occupations, but this isn’t the case for all disability claimants.
While a serious disabling illness or injury can leave you with lasting medical consequences, some individual or group beneficiaries wish to return to work in some capacity. Whether you’re suffering from back pain, an inability to concentrate, or periodic migraines, technology has allowed many employers to offer telework opportunities.
So are you allowed to return to work in some capacity without sacrificing your individual or group long-term disability insurance benefits? Most of the time, you are.
The experienced, individual and long-term disability attorneys and ERISA lawyers at DarrasLaw know the complexities of the American disability insurance industry, including your right to partial individual or group disability benefits. Most individual and group disability insurers are looking for ways to save money, and you may well have a residual disability benefits clause or “return to work” incentives under the terms of your disability insurance plan.
If you’re interested in returning to work but know you can’t do so full-time, call our award-winning long-term individual disability lawyers and ERISA attorneys today at (800) 458-4577 or contact us online to schedule your free case analysis and policy review. Frank N. Darras and his firms have recovered nearly $1 billion in wrongfully delayed and denied insurance benefits, and we can help you.
Disability Insurance and “Return to Work” Incentives
A for-profit corporation probably administers your disability insurance policy, and its goal is to make money. Accordingly, many long-term disability plans offer “return to work” incentives to help speed up your recovery and encourage you to rejoin the workforce.
Remember, not all disability insurance policies are alike, so the terms, limitations, and benefits offered by your disability insurer will differ based on your plan. The definition of a disability or partial disability will also differ based on the terms of your long-term disability policy. Consult a top-rated individual long-term disability attorney or ERISA lawyer from DarrasLaw before you consider returning to work.
Litigating Your Right to Partial Disability Insurance Benefits
Having an award-winning long-term individual disability attorney or ERISA lawyer from DarrasLaw on your side during your return to work is critical, because many long-term individual and group disability insurers may try to terminate your benefits. Typically, you’re considered disabled under your long-term disability plan if you’re unable to perform the important duties of your occupation or in some cases, any occupation by which you are trained, educated or suited.
During the period of disability, both your treating doctors and often improperly credentialed “independent” physicians hired by your insurance company will report on your ability to perform the essential tasks of your occupation. If you decide to return to work part-time, you’re admitting you’re able to perform at least some of your work functions some of the time. Accordingly, your long-term individual or group disability insurer may try to terminate your benefits if your medical records don’t show why you can’t work full-time or perform all of your occupation’s important duties. When you decide to return to part-time work and also claim disability insurance benefits, you must make it medically clear why you still can’t return to work full-time.
In the recent case of Van Steen v. Life Insurance Company of North America, Mr. Van Steen suffered a traumatic brain injury during an attack while walking his dog. After a year of not working, he decided to return to try to work part-time. He couldn’t return to work full-time, however, because his medical records clearly showed his inability to focus. He had suffered from cognitive processing problems, and his persistent migraines prevented him from engaging in full-time employment. His disability insurance company tried to terminate his long-term disability benefits, but the higher court found in his favor because his long-term disability plan allowed for this partial or residual work benefit.
Don’t Hesitate to Contact an Award-Winning Long-Term Individual Disability Lawyer or ERISA Attorney at DarrasLaw
Remember, you don’t have to return to work if you are unable, but most plans offer strong incentives encouraging you to do so. Many individual or group beneficiaries also wish to return to their occupation, because working may aid in a person’s overall emotional recovery.
Don’t feel afraid or ashamed to take advantage of your long-term individual or group disability policy benefits. Instead, prepare to fight your disability insurance company for them.
That’s where DarrasLaw comes in. Spearheaded by nationally renowned disability attorney Frank N. Darras, DarrasLaw has more than 100 years of combined experience fighting for your right to individual or group disability insurance benefits. If you’re considering returning to work part-time, call us today at (800) 458-4577 or contact us online for a free, confidential disability policy analysis and free disability claim consultation.