Can Short-term Disability Be Denied For Mental Health?
Short-term disability insurance is a type of insurance that covers lost wages provides a safety net for employees who are unable to work due to an injury or illness. However there is a misconception that mental health conditions are not covered under short-term disability benefits. This is not entirely true. While some insurance companies might try to deny or limit benefits based on mental health diagnoses short-term disability can be approved for mental health conditions.
The Role of Insurance Companies
Insurance companies will ultimately decide whether or not to approve short-term disability benefits. They do this by reviewing medical records determining whether an employee’s medical condition meets the criteria for short-term disability. Unfortunately insurance companies sometimes deny or limit short-term disability benefits for mental health conditions.
How Mental Health Conditions Can Affect Short-term Disability Insurance
Mental health conditions such as anxiety depression PTSD can affect a person’s ability to work just as much as physical injuries or illnesses. In some cases mental health conditions may even cause physical symptoms that prevent someone from working. However mental health conditions can be harder to diagnose measure than physical conditions insurance companies may use this as a reason to deny or limit short-term disability benefits.
The Legal Landscape
There are laws in place that protect employees with mental health conditions from discrimination in the workplace. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) provides protections for individuals with disabilities including mental health conditions. Under the ADA employers cannot discriminate against employees with mental health conditions must provide reasonable accommodations to help them perform their job duties. However the ADA does not address short-term disability insurance.
What Can You Do If Your Short-term Disability Claim is Denied?
If you have been denied short-term disability benefits for a mental health condition you may want to consider getting a lawyer involved. A lawyer can help you understyour rights advocate for you to get the benefits you are entitled to. It may also be helpful to get a second opinion from a different doctor or a mental health professional who can provide additional documentation to support your claim.
Short-term disability benefits can be approved for mental health conditions despite insurance companies’ attempts to deny or limit benefits. If your short-term disability claim for a mental health condition has been denied don’t give up. Seek help from a lawyer or get a second opinion to support your claim. Remember mental health conditions are just as debilitating as physical conditions should be treated as such.
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