As an employer, it’s your responsibility to ensure that your employees are happy and healthy at work. Part of your role as an employer will involve following the necessary protocols for any disabled employees in your company.
You may have already adapted your work environment to make it more inclusive for your permanently disabled workers. But there are also regulations for employers who are suffering from short-term disabilities.
As an employer, you should know what your employees are entitled to when they are faced with a temporary disability.
What is Short-Term Disability?
Short-term disability is a type of insurance benefit. It compensates employees who have experienced financial loss due to a short-term non-job-related injury or illness that has made them unable to work for a limited period of time.
Short-term disability may differ from temporary disability benefits in that they don’t always cover job-related injuries or illnesses. However, in both scenarios, an external insurance company usually provides the benefits, not the employer.
What Counts As a Short-Term Disability?
Generally, the term ‘short-term disability’ encompasses anything that prevents an employee from completing their job properly.
This includes anything that provides a physical or emotional barrier to work. The disability may include a long recovery period after an accident or traumatic experience.
It’s not always a physical injury or illness that affects an employee’s ability to complete their work responsibilities. Mental health issues can also be a cause for concern.
An employee might be suffering from a long-term mental health condition. They might be feeling particularly stressed or overwhelmed due to their current personal or professional situation.
It can be difficult to determine whether or not a mental health claim can be defined as a short-term disability. Ideally, your employee will be able to provide proof of their condition, such as a doctor’s note.
How Much Time Does An Employee Have Off With Short-Term Disability?
The amount of time that an employee can have off work when they have a short-term disability is assessed on a case-by-case basis. It can range from a couple of weeks to as long as 12 months. The maximum time period differs between locations and individual employers.
Medically, an employee should have enough time off to allow for a full recovery. They shouldn’t return to work until they feel ready to do so, even if the initial sickness period has passed.
It may reach the point where you need to consider a long-term disability plan. For example, if your employee is taking longer than average to recover from major surgery and they are still undergoing physical therapy sessions, they may need to extend their time off or switch to a long-term option.
To file for long-term disability benefits, you will need to inform your current insurers and complete any necessary paperwork.
What is the Payment for Short-Term Disability?
Short-term disability payments can vary. Some employees will obtain a full paycheck during their time off. Others will receive less than 100% of their monthly wage.
The exact amount an employee gets paid depends on their specific injury or illness, how long they’ve been working for the company, and the location of the workplace.