Workplace

Long-term disability insurance remains a widespread employee benefit

Updated: 2013-09-19T02:34:49Z

By DIANE STAFFORD

The Kansas City Star

More than eight out of 10 employers offer group long-term disability plans to at least some of their employees.

The insurance, which provides a replacement income over an extended time for disabled workers, is fully paid for by three-fourths of the employers that offer such coverage.

Those findings come from a random survey of Society of Human Resource Management members taken this summer by Mass Mutual Financial Group.

At a time when employment-based changes to health care insurance are rampant, long-term disability plans appear to be a fairly constant benefits option. Only 15 percent of the employers surveyed said they were considering changes to their long-term disability plans.

For those who said they were contemplating changes, the most frequent possibility was increasing the benefit amount.

Eighty-three percent of the organizations said they believed they were providing an adequate maximum benefit amount to recipients. Those who said the amount was inadequate generally said that concerned their most highly compensated employees.

In the survey, answered by human resource professionals, long-term disability benefits were described as “extremely important” or “very important” by six out of 10 respondents. The human resource professionals generally thought that fewer than half of their employees placed a similar value on the benefit.

The survey also asked what percentage of base salary was replaced by the employer’s long-term disability coverage, plus any buy-up option offered to employees. The most common response was 60 to 69 percent of base salary, answered by 44 percent of the respondents.

The majority of organizations require their employees to wait 60 days before receiving benefits under the group long-term disability plan.

To reach Diane Stafford, call 816-234-4359 or send email to stafford@kcstar.com.

Deal Saver Subscribe today!

Comments

The Kansas City Star is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

The Kansas City Star uses Facebook's commenting system. You need to log in with a Facebook account in order to comment. If you have questions about commenting with your Facebook account, click here