Comparing Other Disability
Policies in the Marketplace.
Dear Rural Letter Carrier:
Our office has been receiving telephone calls regarding rural carriers purchasing disability policies from various insurance companies with shorter waiting periods. It is important that you fully understand the differences between these policies before making a decision regarding coverage.
Major Differences to Consider
- The NRLCA Long Term Disability policy extends coverage to age 65 or your normal Social Security retirement age, not just one or two years.
- The NRLCA LTD contract has a two year own occupation clause.
For example, if you are unable to drive your vehicle to deliver the mail, you are considered disabled under the NRLCA contract. In contrast, under other insurance contracts, if you are unable to drive your vehicle to deliver the mail, but are capable of working any other job, you will not be considered disabled and cannot collect the benefit.
- The NRLCA Long Term Disability policy includes partial disability. This coverage is not available under the other plans. You must be totally disabled to collect the benefit. The following is taken out of the NRLCA Long Term Disability Insurance brochure:
Definition of Disability
Disability and disabled mean that because of an injury or illness, a significant change in your mental or functional abilities has occurred, for which you are:
- Prevented from performing at least one of the material duties of your regular occupation during the first two years of disability and after two years are unable to perform all of the material duties of any gainful occupation; and
- During the first two years of disability are unable to generate current earnings which exceed 80 percent of your monthly earnings from your regular occupation, and after two years are unable to generate current earnings which exceed 60 percent of your monthly earnings from any gainful occupation
Partial Disability Benefits
If you become disabled and can work part-time (but not full-time), you may be eligible for partial disability benefits, which will help supplement your income until you are able to return to work full-time.
Vocational Rehabilitation Incentive Benefit
If you become disabled and participate in the vocational rehabilitation program, which offers services that help you return to work, you will be eligible for a monthly benefit increase of 5 percent.
If you return to work full-time following a disability and the disability recurs within 6 months, you do not have to satisfy a new elimination period.
The major differences between these policies are simple;
- Length of coverage,
- The own occupation cause, and
- Partial disability.
The NRLCA Long Term Disability policy was written in the best interest of all members. I highly encourage you to review your policy, and contact the company to verify this information before the end of open enrollment.
Please call the Long Term Disability and Life Insurance Hotline at (877) 817-4801.
Greater Insurance Service