Short-term disability benefits in Oregon replace a portion of income when the insured person cannot work because of a non-occupational injury or illness.

The state does not have a mandatory program covering off-the-job medical conditions. Therefore, make sure you purchase a private insurance policy before becoming sick, hurt, or pregnant.

On the other hand, the state does administer programs coving long-term disabilities (Social Security) and occupational incidents (Worker’s Compensation) – and even permits the use of unemployment compensation in some instances.

Apply for these state benefits by completing the appropriate claim form found online.

Short-Term Disability in Oregon

Short-term disability benefits in Oregon covering non-occupational (off-the-job) medical conditions are hit or miss. The state does not have a mandatory program. Therefore, each person is responsible for purchasing private coverage before becoming sick, hurt, or pregnant.

You cannot file a claim if you do not own a policy first. Request a quote to determine policy costs to cover future losses if you are healthy enough to qualify.

Pregnancy Leave

Short-term disability covering pregnancy in Oregon requires timely action and a cooperative employer. Once again, the state does not have a mandatory program. Therefore, women must take proactive steps.

The Oregon Family Leave Act provides up to 36 weeks of unpaid job protections if mom experiences complications before her delivery, and then needs to care for her sick infant after she recovers for childbirth. Thirty-six weeks is a long time to go without an income.

You could enjoy partial income replacement during part of this time by doing at least two or these three things.

  1. Buy a policy BEFORE CONCEPTION. Once you are already expecting, it will be too late. All private plans consider pregnancy as a pre-existing condition.
  2. Purchase the coverage at work if available. ONLY EMPLOYER-BASED COVERAGE honors claims during the time that mom recovers from normal labor and delivery.
  3. Buy an individual policy outside of work as a fallback option. Coverage obtained outside of employer groups DO NOT COVER RECOVERY FROM NORMAL CHILDBIRTH. However, complications of pregnancy before delivery are common (25%).

Temporary Disability Assistance

The Oregon temporary disability assistance program may help some residents dealing with lost income because a non-occupational sickness or injury prevents them from working. Stop-gap help is a common need because too many people assume that a state short-term disability benefit exists – when it does not.

The Oregon Department of Human Services administers the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program. TANF provides cash assistance to low-income families with children while they strive to become self-sufficient.

To qualify for TANF, families must have very few assets and little or no income.

Phone Number

There is not a single Oregon short-term disability phone number to call. People seeking to enroll in coverage or file a claim for benefits need to contact the appropriate private insurance company. Keep in mind; the state does not require coverage for any class of workers.

Therefore, you may need to look in three possible places for the correct phone number.

  1. Private employees with access to coverage at work should contact their human resources department for enrollment and claim instructions
  2. Individuals who purchased a plan outside of work can find the phone number printed on their policy paperwork or the insurance company website
  3. Public Employee Benefit Board members can call Standard Insurance at 1-800-842-1707

Oregon State Disability Services

Oregon state disability services include the administration of federal Social Security benefits, oversight of coverage for occupational disorders (Worker’s Compensation), supervision of Unemployment Compensation, and running the Department of Aging.

However, this does not include a state-mandated program covering temporary disabilities for non-occupational injuries and sicknesses.

Applying for Disability

The Oregon State Office of Disability Determination Services (DDS) makes the medical eligibility determination for two federal programs covering long-term income losses: Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI).

  • SSI: pays claims to disabled adults and children who have limited earnings and resources. The average SSI payment is about $500 monthly.
  • SSDI: pays claims to you and individual family members if you worked long enough and paid FICA taxes. The average SSDI payment is about $1,100 per month.

You apply for these state-administered benefits online at the Social Security website (SSA.gov). Follow up with your local DDS office after you have filed your claim online. Call the central DDS phone number (1-800-452-2147) to set up an appointment to review your application in person.

Surviving while waiting for your disability decision is not easy. You must take every opportunity to cut costs and find ways to make money – without jeopardizing your approval chances.

Unemployment Compensation

The Oregon Employment Department administers unemployment compensation throughout the state. Unemployment benefits are not a substitute for disability insurance because you do not meet the three primary eligibility criteria.

  1. Physically able to work
  2. Available for duty
  3. Actively seeking a new job

However, the caretakers of a disabled person may be able to collect unemployment once they are open to resuming working. In Oregon, an acceptable good cause reason to quit work includes the illness of an immediate family member who requires care (if your employer will not allow you the time off).

Occupational Disabilities

The Oregon Workers Compensation Division oversees the insurance program covering temporary and long-term (permanent) disabilities arising from occupational (on-the-job) accidents and diseases. Unlike with off-the-job medical conditions, the state requires that most employers pay for this coverage for their employees.

You apply for occupational disability benefits by filing a Workers Compensation claim.

  • Submit form 801 to your employer to begin the process
  • Complete form 827 with your doctor and submit it to the insurance company

Resource Center

The Oregon Aging and Disability Resource Center helps residents looking for information about services to address the aging and disabled. The center connects people to a variety of long-term support options available in the home or the community.

  • Community-Based
    • Adult daycare
    • Meal programs
    • Senior centers
    • Transportation
    • Chronic disease self-management
  • Home-Based
    • Adult foster care
    • Assisted living
    • Nursing facilities
    • Memory care
  • Other Supports
    • Alzheimer & Dementia
    • Caregiver support
    • Legal assistance
    • Preventing elder abuse

Sources:

  1. PEBB
  2. TANF
  3. Unemployment Good Cause
  4. Workers Compensation
  5. ADRC