We do not handle Social Security Disability (SSDI) claims.

What do short-term disability PERA benefits cover?

Shawn E. McDermott

Most people expect to work consistently throughout their adult lives until they reach retirement age. People count on having good health throughout their working years so that they can support themselves and their families. They may have very little in savings, other than what they set aside for their retirement.

Unfortunately, some people experience medical challenges that affect their ability to maintain gainful employment. People may develop serious illnesses or get hurt because of a car crash. Others end up severely hurt by criminal activity or a product malfunction. Some workers in Colorado need to take a leave of absence from work that goes beyond just a day or two.

They may not have any paid time off available or may want to save those benefits for a planned vacation or a short-term illness in the future. Some workers have the protection of short-term disability coverage through the Public Employee’s Retirement Association (PERA). What can workers expect if they need to make use of PERA disability coverage?

Workers can collect a portion of their wages

Those who have a qualifying work history, including at least five years of earned service credits, may be eligible for PERA disability benefits. These workers typically need to have a recent work history and must apply within 90 days of losing their ability to work because of their medical condition.

Short-term disability benefits through PERA do not provide full wage replacements. Instead, workers can receive 60% of their usual weekly income based on their salary before they became unable to work. Short-term disability benefits help workers cover their basic living expenses while they are unable to work. Short-term disability coverage usually applies to those who believe they will eventually recover enough to return to work.

People become eligible for short-term disability benefits when they have been unable to work for at least 60 days. The benefits can last for up to 22 months. At that point, workers may need to look into permanent or long-term disability coverage options if they still cannot return to work. Seeking legal guidance to learn more about how short-term disability benefits function may benefit those coping with the consequences of an injury or illness that keeps them out of work.

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