Wilkes University’s long-term disability (LTD) benefits plan provides income protection to help full-time employees whose illness or injury results in a long-term absence from employment. LTD is designed to ensure a continuing income for employees who are disabled and unable to work in any capacity.
Full-time employees may participate in the LTD plan subject to all terms and conditions of the agreement between Wilkes University and the insurance carrier. Eligible employees may begin LTD coverage only after completing 365 calendar days of service as a full time employee. The waiting period of 365 calendar days of service as a full time employee may be waived if the employee was insured under a previous Employer's Group LTD plan just prior to his/her hire date with Wilkes University. Employees must provide proof of prior coverage at time of hire.
LTD benefits commence after a waiting period of (6) six months of disability, typically coinciding with the end of Short Term Disability (STD) benefits. LTD benefits are offset with amounts received under Social Security or workers' compensation for the same time period.
Flexible Benefit Coverage
During the period of absence from week twenty five (25) through week fifty two (52), an employee on LTD, who was previously enrolled in medical, dental, vision coverage and/or medical/dependent care spending accounts (if not overspent) is eligible to continue at the same level of coverage through COBRA. During this period, the university will continue to pay the employer portion of the premium share while the employee pays the premium share at active status amounts.
After week fifty two (52), an employee on LTD, who was previously enrolled in medical, dental, vision coverage and/or medical/dependent care spending accounts (if not overspent) wishing to maintain coverage through COBRA is responsible for the full premium plus a 2% administrative fee.
Returning to Work
An employee intending to return to work following LTD must notify the University in writing and provide all appropriate medical documentation from his/her physician. Upon receipt of all required documentation, and in the event an accommodation is requested by the employee in order to enable the employee to return to work, the University will engage in an individualized interactive process with the employee to determine whether the accommodation request is reasonable.
Employment with the University may be terminated after a period of absence of one year if, after the University and employee engage in an individualized interactive process, it is determined that a reasonable accommodation based on the employee’s restrictions cannot be made by the University. (Note: An extension of leave may be permitted if the University receives from the employee a request for an extension of reinstatement rights for an additional, reasonable period to allow the employee to recover sufficiently and to return to work and such extension is required under federal, state, or local disability laws.)
Details of the LTD benefits plan including benefit amounts, and limitations and restrictions are described in the Summary Plan Description provided to eligible employees upon their hire. Employees may contact the Human Resources Department for more information about LTD benefits.
Effective Date: 2/1/2004 Revised: 07/2011 Revised: 06/2013