The state sponsored California short term disability maximum benefit can be increased by purchasing a supplemental policy. California is one of only four other states with a mandated program, which is great to have when the need arises. But the program has limitations.
A supplemental policy can radically improve the answer to some common concerns about the state sponsored short term disability insurance in California. Consider these common requests, and find detailed answers below:
- How much do you get?
- How long can you be on?
- How does it work for pregnancy and childbirth?
- How do you apply for benefits?
CA Disability Maximum Amount
The first very common question heard is “how much do you get for short term disability in California?” The answer is not always straightforward, as the formula is complex, and you want to compare the maximum benefit to your take-home-pay before your disability began.
What the State Pays
The California short term disability maximum benefit amount is calculated by looking at your most recent income over several base periods. There are two key points to the calculation.
- The CA state program uses a formula that equates to payments of about 55% of gross income. These payments come to you free of taxes, and other deductions. For many people this may result in an increase in spendable income.
- There is a weekly maximum benefit amount of $987. Workers earning more than $93,387 annually will hit this weekly maximum benefit amount.
Increase the Maximum Benefit Amount
Personal short term disability insurance in California allows you to increase the maximum benefit amount. The maximum benefit amount on a supplemental policy may go as high as seventy percent when combined with the state plan. Remember that without adding to your benefit amount the best outcome translates into a 45% pay cut. Many people find it difficult to make ends meet with this type of income loss.
CA Short Term Disability Extension
The second question with a new answer is “how long can you stay on short term disability in California?” The state program duration is twelve months if continuously disabled. But what if your disability lasts longer and you need an extended duration?
Private, supplemental short term disability insurance in CA provides a benefit payment duration extension of up to twelve additional months. Many believe that Social Security will extend benefit payments after the state program reaches its limitation of twelve months. This is not always true.
The definition of disability is much stricter for Social Security. Short term disability pays for temporary medical conditions. Social Security only pays for permanent disabilities. If you are expected to recover at some point you will not qualify.
Pregnancy and Childbirth
The third question with a new answer is “how does California short term disability work for pregnancy and maternity leave?’ Both the state and private supplemental plans work in the same way in term of qualifications, and requirements. The primary difference boils down to whether somebody wants to increase the maximum benefit amount while on maternity leave.
Pregnancy Bed Rest
Pregnancy is a planned event for many couples. The state plan automatically enrolls people in the plan. Private policies covering pregnancy require an action: enroll in a plan prior to conception. Pregnancy is considered a preexisting condition for private supplemental plans.
Pregnancy bed rest is not planned but very common. Twenty five percent of all pregnancies experience one or more complications, and may require extended bed rest. The California Pregnancy Disability Leave Act allows for four months of job protected leave, and the state disability plan provides a maximum benefit of fifty five percent.
Four months is a long time to go with a forty-five percent pay cut. Increase the maximum benefit amount during your pregnancy bed rest by purchasing a supplemental policy.
Both the state and private supplemental short term disability in California cover recovery from childbirth, and provide income replacement during maternity leave. As before, the key question is whether you want to increase the maximum benefit amount during this time.
Since normal childbirth is often a planned event it makes great sense to purchase a supplemental policy. The carriers don’t always view the opportunity the same way as these policies are money losers.
Voluntary short term disability in California allows workers to cover childbirth, and creates maternity leave pay. Get the policies at work, and pay the premium through payroll deduction.
Applying for Benefits
The last question whose answer has changed is “how do you apply for California short term disability benefits?’. The first part of the answer remains the same for people inquiring about the state-sponsored plan. But now there may be two additional places to apply.
- Apply for CA state disability benefits through the EDD website.
- Apply for private benefits by filing a claim with your carrier.
Enjoy a California short term disability maximum benefit increase. Start by requesting a quote, and then learn how to get a policy covering normal childbirth if an increase in maternity leave income would help your family.
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