Clarification regarding COD (change of definition)

I have received a letter of notice that COD will happen in about 7-8 months time. I’m trying to prepare myself mentally and have some questions.

  1. If the insurer deems that I can work to some degree in ANY occupation, is that referring to any occupation with my current employer, or can they require me to quit my current position and look for a different job (whatever they deem I can do) at a different company?

  2. My education is specialized and so is my current job. Can they deem me fit to do a less demanding job which I am technically overqualified for? In the past, I have never been successful getting hired for “any” occupation and have ended up being head-hunted or recruited for my special skills. If so, do they continue LTD payments until I actually get hired or can I be left “unemployed” with no LTD benefits?

  3. I have read in this forum about Transferable Skills Analysis or Vocational Assessments. Can anyone provide some details based on their experience on what kind of questions I will be asked?

  4. What is the minimum number of hours they would expect me to be able to work consistently every day in order to consider me as fit to work any occupation? 4hrs?

  5. I am currently hired as a remote worker. Working from home was a condition of my employment. Due to multiple physical conditions, I would not be able to commute and work on-site. Do insurers take such circumstances into consideration or could they expect me to take on any job, anywhere?

Thank you in advance

It is not ANY occupation.
It is one that pays x% (I forget, 80%) of your occupation.

  1. You current employer has to prove it would be undue hardship to get rid of you.
    Don’t quit or let the insurance company bully you.
    Consult a lawyer before making any big decisions.

  2. As long as the other jobs pays you to be overqualified. :slight_smile:
    I’d be hesitant to leave your current employer though.

  3. I never did it but my friend did and I do not remember what it entailed.
    Make sure you get copies of the reports.

  4. There is a number I think but I forgot, sorry.

  5. The insurer probably won’t care but your doctors can push back.

If you would qualify for CPP-D then that will strengthen your LTD claim.
But they may estimate&deduct if you apply.

Best of luck.

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Re #3, they asked about my education and my prior work history and a bunch of other skill-type information. I never heard back from them after I completed it.

Since every disability is so different, I don’t think that there are any hard and fast rules. If your condition prevents you from both commuting to work and working then that would be another aspect of your disability that would prevent you from working. If you were already working from home and can no longer do that, it’s hard to see what other occupation could replace that that you’d be able to do. I have seen court cases before that found that frequent work absences due to flareups did count as disabled.

Do read through your work benefits policy to make sure that you understand your own policy. Mine had a specific % of my pre-disability income that had to be earned for me to stop being disabled.

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What specifically does your master policy say about “any occupation”? If you don’t have a copy of your master policy (not just the employee handbook) then it’s a good idea to ask for it.

From what I understand, under the Common Law of Canada you need to be capable of earning a commensurate income (approx 60 to 65% of your predisabilty income) in order for the insurer to say you can do “any occupation”. Sometimes in the master policy will state a % of what this commensurate income is, and that would override the Common Law.

My insurer sent me a similar upcoming change of definition letter. I replied with a reminder that they must consider the limited hours I can work to calculate the commensurate income I am capable of earning. Also that I would need to be able to earn greater than 65% of my predisabilty income for them to deem me capable of “any occupation”. When the definition date change came they had no problems continuing my benefits.

Thank you all for your input.
My master policy does not specify a % of my current income that I would need to earn in order to be deemed that I can do “any occupation”. It just states that it is any occupation that I am suited for by education, training and work experience. Based on my resume, I think my insurer will tell me I have some transferable skills but in reality, at the moment (and in my foreseeable future), I no longer really have those skills due to my medical condition.

Regardless, it would have to be a remote position and at the moment I would not be able to work even part-time from home. I do think my insurer will approve me after COD but I’m not too sure about CPPD, which I will be applying to soon.

Thank you all for your insights.

Do get David Brannen’s book on applying for CPPD. It explains how to emphasize how the disability affects your life in disabling ways.

I do have David’s book. I’ll definitely be following the advice given so that my application is as good as I can make it. Thanks for reminding me!