Filing for ERISA disability can be a confusing and lengthy process, especially if you are actively dealing with physical or mental disabilities at the time of filing, or if you are unfamiliar with how the system works and what your rights are.
One specific point that applicants should be aware of is that, since ERISA is federal law, they are subject to ERISA disability and offset provisions in Louisiana and everywhere else in the country. What this means for you is that your disability income may be reduced by other sources of income you have.
Certain provisions in ERISA disability insurance policy allow for the carrier to deduct other income the recipient may have or is eligible to have from their disability payments. While the offset provisions may only make up a few sentences in the ERISA disability policy, they can potentially have a large impact on an applicant’s life. Knowing what types of offsets may apply to any individual circumstances is important to understanding the disability benefits someone may be eligible to receive.
In a nutshell, offsets prevent ERISA applicants from stacking multiple insurance benefits on top of each other. The total amount of disability insurance payments a recipient is entitled to every month is lessened by certain other sources of income as listed in each individual policy. For instance, if someone is supposed to receive $2,000 each month for long term disability benefits and is entitled to $1,000 per month from Social Security Benefits, their long term disability benefits would decrease to only $1,000.
By law, only certain types of income can cause an offset to occur for your disability benefits. These include social security disability, state disability insurance, and third-party settlements.
Social Security Disability
The most common offsets include Social Security disability insurance (SSDI) and Supplement Security Income (SSI) benefits. SSDI grants monthly benefits to people who are disabled and unable to work prior to reaching retirement age.
State Disability Insurance
Many states such as California, New York, New Jersey, Rhode Island, and Hawaii have their own disability insurance programs. For instance, residents in California may be eligible to receive 52 weeks of disability payments up to 55% of their earnings in the highest quarter of the base period prior to disability. However, Louisiana only offers an $8 supplement to SSI recipients who live in long-term care facilities sponsored by Medicaid.
If an injury results from the actions of another party, the victim may receive a legal settlement. If they do, the amount of the settlement could be deducted from their ERISA disability income each month.
To ensure that your offsets are correctly calculated and managed, contact a Louisiana ERISA disability and offset provisions lawyer. An experienced attorney from our disability team could examine your policy and benefits to make sure you are receiving what you should.
In some cases, if you have private disability insurance, a skilled lawyer may be able to negotiate a lower offset amount for your benefits. If you believe your ERISA disability benefits are being wrongly calculated or offset, call us today so we may help set things straight with your insurance carrier.
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