Disability

Disability

Updated: January 21, 2022

We will continue to accept the Confirmation of Illness form for STD claims submitted for COVID-19 or symptoms of COVID 19. This form is for COVID Short-Term Disability (STD) claims with a maximum duration of 10 days. The form has been updated.* Please be sure to access and submit the most recent version. 

If a plan member is still not able to work after 10 days, they will need to submit an Attending Physician Form. 

We reinstated our standard requirement for a completed Attending Physician Statement as part of a new claim submission, effective November 1, 2021. The Attending Physician Statement must be completed by a Physician or Nurse Practitioner.


* Fillable web forms may not work in certain internet browsers such as Google Chrome. If this occurs, you can try: Right clicking on the form and select “Save link as” to your desktop. The saved PDF on your desktop should open.

Updated: January 6, 2022

As Omicron COVID-19 cases surge, we’re evolving our practices to align with public health guidelines.   

Testing guidelines

Due to changes across the country regarding PCR test shortages and backlogs, we will now accept a positive rapid antigen test as confirmation of a COVID diagnosis, where PCR tests are unavailable.

Isolation guidelines

It’s important to check your provincial public health guidelines to properly assess your isolation period. Guidelines may differ based on vaccination status and occupation (i.e. health care), so be sure to review local public health rules before making a Short-Term Disability (STD) claim.

Please remember to take care of yourself and prioritize your well-being. Our support for you and your employees continues to be our top priority during these difficult times.

Updated December 1, 2020

We have standard pre-existing condition clauses in our contracts. This can affect a plan member’s eligibility for disability benefits if:

  • the health conditions existed before a plan member’s coverage began, and
  • the disability occurs within the timeframe set out in the contract

If there is a break in coverage, we typically use the coverage reinstatement date when applying the pre-existing provision. Earlier this year we changed our administrative process for COVID-19-related layoffs. We were using the previous date coverage began when applying the pre-existing provision. As of January 1, 2021, we’ll be returning to your standard contract terms for pre-existing conditions.

Pre-existing condition clause: statutory leaves

Many provinces have laws that protect the earnings and benefits of employees when returning from a statutory leave. This includes legislated emergency leaves.

If the plan sponsor must continue benefits coverage during a statutory leave, the plan member still has the option to waive it. Here is what happens when a plan member waives coverage during a statutory leave.

Pre-existing condition provision: We reinstate coverage when the plan member returns to work. We will use the previous date coverage began when applying the pre-existing condition provision

Updated: October 28, 2021

You may have found gradual return-to-work plans for disabled employees difficult during the pandemic. The workplace landscape has shifted for many with:

  • more flexible remote work options
  • changing workloads, and
  • changing duties.

If you’re an administrative services only (ASO) Client

We continue to take direction from you on handling return-to-work plans. We’ll work with you to overcome barriers where possible – and structure plans that work for everyone. Please let your Group Disability Manager know if the pandemic has affected your return to work planning.

If you have an insured plan

For your employees on disability leave, we know that a gradual return to work may present challenges. Even if workloads have changed, we don’t consider work availability when determining total disability. We encourage you to talk to your Disability Case Manager about the options available.