I’ve read that if your job is terminated while on LTD, it’s not grounds for the LTD provider to terminate your benefits. Does the same hold true if you decide to resign from your job while receiving LTD?
I’ve been on LTD for 6 years for depression (also receiving CPP). After my first year on LTD, I decided to move to a different city to live with my parents because I wasn’t coping well living on my own. I don’t want to return to my old job in my old city. I don’t have any family or social support in that city, and no family physician, psychiatrist, or therapist. Where I live now, I have family and an established medical and therapeutic support system.
I’d like to start working towards doing volunteer work, then find part-time paid employment, with the goal of getting off LTD.
If I tell my LTD provider my plans, can they terminate my benefits because I have no intention of returning to my previous job?
Thanks in advance for any advice.
My humble advice is not to rock the applecart. If you plan to try volunteering as part of therapy and to test yourself to see if you can pace and handle a volunteer stint…then advise the Insurer what you are doing to try and get better. Do not jump ahead to employment and getting off LTD until you know for sure that you can do so. Loose lips sink ships.
Do not resign from your job as there is no reason to. The majority of time it is better to be let go than to quit/resign.
Be aware that most new employment plans for std/ltd benefits have a one year pre-existing clause…so you would need to be certain that you are unlikely to relapse.
I should have provided a little more detail in my OP- specifically, my LTD provider is going to have me assessed by a “rehabilitation specialist” to make a plan to “get my functioning back up to where it was before” so I can “return to my job in a few months”. One of the things this rehab specialist will go over with me is my goals re: return to work.
I don’t know how to manage this appointment, what exactly I should tell them about my goals. Should I reveal my intent to stay in my current city where I have family and therapeutic support? I’m concerned they’ll terminate my benefits once they know I have no intention of returning to my former workplace.
There’s no way I’ll be able to work full time at any job in only a few months. I need to go slow- starting with some volunteer work, then finding my own place and start living independently again, then maybe some part-time work (I also receive CPP disability and don’t want to throw that away too soon, either).
I guess my real question is: how to handle this rehab specialist assessment with respect to return to work goals? Can my LTD be terminated if I reveal intent to not return to my previous workplace?
Thanks again for your help.
ETA: I’m early 40’s female, single no kids, in case that makes any difference
You are giving your opinions here, but urge you to follow through on the process. Work with the vocational specialist. He or she may reach the same conclusion as you. Any opinion that it is inappropriate for you to return to your former employment, on any given timeframe, must come from someone other than you – the vocational rehab worker, your doctor etc.
While you have not obligation to return to your former employment, that will raise many many red flags for the insurer – the most important being that your old employer has a legal obligation to “accommodate your disability” because you are an existing employee. New employers will not have that same obligation, at least not at the outset or to the same degree.
So if you are choosing to not return to your former employment then you should be up front with the vocational specialist about it, but realize it will cause a lot of problems for your LTD payments.
Disability Lawyer with Resolute Legal
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Thank you so much, David. I understand what you’re saying about opinions re return to my former job needing to come from someone else. I know I want to increase my functioning and explore some volunteer work as a part of my rehabilitation, but the opinions that matter as far as returning to work will be the rehab specialist’s and my psychiatrist’s.
When the adjudicator told me the rehab specialists will ask me my return to work goals, I thought it meant I’d better come up with some goals and a plan to discuss with the rehab specialist. But maybe not. Maybe it’s better if I wait to see what they say, and see what my doctor thinks.