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Minnesota Residents – Get Assistance from Expert Long-Term Disability Insurance Lawyers

While Capitan Law is not licensed to practice in Minnesota courts, our long-term disability lawyers assist disabled Minnesota citizens with ERISA-governed disability insurance claims. As discussed in more detail below, ERISA is federal law. If you have a claim that is governed by Minnesota law, please contact a local attorney licensed to practice law in your state to assist you with that matter.

Facing a non-work-related injury or illness can threaten your financial stability. Let Capitan Law, your experienced long-term disability insurance lawyers, guide you through the application process of disability insurance via your employer’s ERISA-governed policy. Be aware that this process is complex, with insurance companies often attempting to minimize or deny benefits owed.

Our long-term disability attorneys will defend your rights, collate necessary evidence, and strive for the benefits you deserve. We offer free consultations, so call us at (267) 419-7888 today.

Differences between LTD Insurance and Workers’ Compensation

The main difference between long-term disability and workers’ compensation is that LTD benefits provide a partial-wage replacement for someone who becomes injured while doing something unrelated to their work, while workers’ comp is for job-related injuries and illnesses. If you are injured at work, you may still be able to apply for disability insurance benefits depending on the specific language contained in your policy. However, if you are eligible for both types of benefits, LTD benefits are usually offset by any benefits received through the workers’ comp claim.  

Both insurance policies can come from your employer; however, not all businesses in Minnesota have a legal obligation to provide long-term disability to their employees. If your employer does not offer LTD insurance, you may have purchased your own individual disability plan and paid the monthly premium. It is also possible to have a policy you purchased yourself and one provided through your employment relationship. If you sustain an injury or get sick, you’ll be able to collect benefits based on your policy type. The attorneys at Capitan Law can help you understand the options available to you and are well-equipped to help you navigate these complex issues.

Long-Term Disability Laws in Minnesota

All long-term disability insurance carriers offering plans in Minnesota must provide coverage compliant with ERISA. Plans may offer broader coverage but may not offer anything less than ERISA plans provide. Long-term disability (LTD) insurance is intended to provide wage replacement for a policyholder if they become disabled and cannot work.

Many Minnesota employees, including government employers, offer LTD as an optional employee benefit. If you have coverage through your employer and need to file a claim, your benefits department or HR representative can guide you through the claims process. If your employer doesn’t offer LTD insurance, though, you can purchase your own policy direct from the insurance company and follow the claims process outlined in your plan.

Minnesota Long-Term Disability Laws Regarding Benefits Eligibility

Each insurance company writes its own plans that outline long-term disability eligibility requirements. However, most plans are similar and may specify that:

  • The policyholder must have been working full-time for at least a year.
  • The disability must prevent them from working for at least six months.
  • There is a waiting period before the policyholder is eligible for benefits (the elimination period or the time that they’re covered by short-term disability).
  • Certain pre-existing conditions or illnesses may be excluded from coverage.

LTD policies are medically underwritten, which means that the insured must provide medical proof of the disability and its limitations on their ability to work in their “own occupation” (the occupation they had before becoming disabled) or in any job at all. Benefits may pay a portion of the insured’s pre-disability wages and may continue for a set period of time.

Your specific monthly payout will be a fraction of your pre-disability wage, not the full amount. Most plans average 60-70% of the insured’s average wage, but some pay as low as 50% of your pre-disability wage. The length of time you are covered also varies with your plan. The most generous coverage lasts until the insured turns 65 and is eligible for Social Security benefits.

How Does Minnesota Law Define Long-Term Disability?

Each insurance company defines “long-term disability” slightly differently. For the most part, a long-term disability is usually described as one that renders the individual unable to work for at least six months in either their own occupation or any gainful employment.

Minnesota insurance laws permit insurance carriers to set their own definitions of long-term disability as long as the definition does not conflict with ERISA verbiage. You may also see your LTD benefits reduced if you start receiving SSDI benefits, so you may wish to consult an attorney before applying for Social Security disability benefits.

Taxability of Minnesota Long-Term Disability Benefits

If you have LTD coverage through your employer, and that employer pays the plan premium, then you will likely have to pay federal income tax on any LTD benefits payout. However, if you purchased your plan privately with your own post-tax dollars or if you use your own post-tax dollars to pay your premium for an employer-sponsored plan, then your benefits are usually federal tax-exempt.

Contact our ERISA Benefits Claims Experts

At Capitan Law, we comprehend the urgency of receiving LTD benefits. We work tirelessly to protect your rights and ensure fair treatment during the claims process. If you’re unable to work in Minnesota, call us at (267) 419-7888 for assistance with filing for benefits.

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