What do the terms “Disabled” and “Disability” mean? How are they defined?

For Short Term Disability

“Disabled” or “Disability” means that, due to sickness, or as a direct result of accidental injury:

  • You are receiving Appropriate Care and Treatment and complying with the requirements of such treatment; and
  • You are unable to earn more than 80% of Your Predisability Salary at Your Own Job at the State of Tennessee.

For purposes of determining whether a Disability is the direct result of an accidental injury, the Disability must have occurred within 90 days of the accidental injury and resulted from such injury independent of other causes.

If Your occupation requires a license, the fact that You lose Your license for any reason will not, in itself, constitute Disability.

For Long Term Disability

“Disabled” or “Disability” means that, due to sickness, or as a direct result of accidental injury:

  • during the Elimination Period and the next 24 months (or 36 months for Plans 3 & 4) of Sickness or accidental injury;
    • You are unable to perform the duties of Your Own Occupation and You are receiving Appropriate Care and Treatment and complying with the requirements of such treatment; or
    • You are unable to earn more than 80% of Your Predisability Salary at Your Own Occupation and You are receiving Appropriate Care and Treatment and complying with the requirements of such treatment.
  • After such period:
    • You are unable to perform the duties of any occupation for which You are reasonably qualified taking into account Your training, education and experience and You are receiving Appropriate Care and Treatment and complying with the requirements of such treatment; or
    • You are unable to earn more than 60% of Your Predisability Salary from any employer in Your Local Economy at any gainful occupation for which You are reasonably qualified taking into account Your training, education and experience and You are receiving Appropriate Care and Treatment and complying with the requirements of such treatment.

For purposes of determining whether a Disability is the direct result of an accidental injury, the Disability must have occurred within 90 days of the accidental injury and resulted from such injury independent of other causes.

Please note that Long Term Disability Insurance (LTD) FAQs are for State employees only. The State of TN does not offer Long Term Disability Insurance to Higher Education employees. If you are a Higher Education employee, direct questions on LTD to your Agency Benefits Coordinator.

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