Long-term disability insurance

The PEBB Program provides long-term disability (LTD) insurance at no cost to employees enrolled in the full benefits package. Additional optional LTD insurance is available for purchase.

Your one-time open enrollment opportunity

From March 1 through 31, 2019, you will have a special, one-time open enrollment opportunity for optional long-term disability insurance. You can enroll or reduce your waiting period without providing evidence of insurability (proof of good health). Normally, you must submit proof of good health to take these actions after your initial 31-day eligibility period for PEBB benefits.

This opportunity is available to employees whose employer offers LTD insurance. Changes made during March 2019 will be effective May 1, 2019.

If you haven’t enrolled in optional LTD in the past, or didn’t want to provide proof of good health, now is a great time to reconsider this benefit.

Note: The current preexisting condition exclusion and 12-month exclusion period will still apply during the one-time open enrollment. Please read your certificate of coverage carefully to understand this benefit.

How do I take advantage of this opportunity?

To enroll or reduce your waiting period, complete the Long-Term Disability One-time Open Enrollment/Change Form and submit it to your personnel, payroll, or benefits office by March 31, 2019.

Eligibility requirements

The PEBB Program provides long-term disability (LTD) insurance to eligible members through The Standard Insurance Company. Eligible members include employees of:

  • State agencies
  • Higher-education institutions (including community and technical colleges)
  • Employees who work for a PEBB participating school district, tribal government, or employer group that offers both PEBB medical and dental coverage.

If you work for a PEBB participating school district, tribal government, or employer group, contact your personnel, payroll, or benefits office to see if this is part of your benefits package.

Optional LTD insurance is not available to seasonal employees who work a season that is less than nine months, or port commissioners.

How to enroll (outside March 2019)

Complete and submit the Long-Term Disability (LTD) Enrollment/Change Form 2018 or 2019 to your employer’s personnel, payroll, or benefits office. You may enroll in optional LTD coverage within 31 days after becoming eligible for PEBB benefits (generally your first day of employment) without providing evidence of insurability.

If you apply for optional LTD coverage after 31 days, or decrease the waiting period for optional LTD coverage, you must provide evidence of insurability (proof of good health) and Standard Insurance Company must approve your request before your insurance becomes effective.

If applying after 31 days, or decreasing the waiting period for optional LTD coverage:

  1. Complete and submit the Long-Term Disability (LTD) Enrollment/Change Form 2018 or 2019 to your employer’s personnel, payroll, or benefits office.
  2. Complete the Evidence of Insurability Form and submit it to Standard Insurance Company (at the address on the form).

Basic LTD insurance (automatic)

LTD insurance is designed to help protect you from the financial risk of lost earnings due to serious injury or illness. When you enroll in LTD coverage, it pays a percentage of your monthly earnings to you if you become disabled.

The PEBB Program's full employee benefits package includes basic LTD insurance at no cost to you. It provides:

  • Benefit: 60 percent of the first $400 of your predisability earnings (your monthly base pay), reduced by any deductible income.
  • Minimum: $50/month
  • Maximum: $240/month

Benefits start after 90 days or the period of sick leave (excluding shared leave) for which you are eligible under the employer’s sick leave plan (whichever is longer), and continue during disability up to the maximum benefit period.

Optional LTD insurance (voluntary)

You can build on your basic coverage  by purchasing optional LTD. Depending on the coverage you choose and when you apply, you may need to provide evidence of insurability. Optional LTD provides:

  • Benefit: 60 percent of the first $10,000 of your predisability earnings, reduced by any deductible income, and any benefits paid under the basic plan.
  • Minimum: $50/month
  • Maximum: $6,000/month

This plan includes a cost of living adjustment (COLA) provision. Benefits start after the end of the benefit waiting period you choose, or the period of sick leave (excluding shared leave) for which you are eligible under the employer’s sick leave plan (whichever is longer), and continue during disability up to the maximum benefit period. The maximum benefit period is based on the age of the member when they become disabled.

2019 changes to benefit waiting periods

Starting January 1, 2019, newly eligible members enrolling in optional LTD will not be able to choose a 30-day or 60-day waiting period. If you enrolled before January 1, 2019 and chose a 30- or 60-day waiting period, you can keep that option through December 31, 2019. By January 1, 2020, all PEBB members must change their benefit waiting periods to 90 days or longer.

The shorter waiting periods will be replaced by the new Washington State Paid Family & Medical Leave program, which will offer eligible employees 12 to 18 weeks of paid leave after a qualifying event.

Terms and conditions apply

LTD insurance has limitations, including an exclusion period and a preexisting condition exclusion. Please read your certificate of coverage carefully to understand this benefit.

Definition of a disability

A disability means being unable to perform with reasonable continuity the duties of your job as a result of sickness, injury, or pregnancy during the benefit waiting period and the first 24 months for which LTD benefits are payable.

During this period, you are considered partially disabled if you are working but unable to earn more than 80 percent of your indexed predisability earnings. After that, as a result of sickness, injury, or pregnancy, being unable to perform with reasonable continuity the duties of any job for which you are reasonably able through education, training, or experience. During this period, you are considered partially disabled if you are working, but unable to earn more than 60 percent of your indexed predisability earnings in that occupation and in all other occupations for which you are reasonably suited.

Maximum benefit period

For both basic LTD and optional LTD coverage, the benefit duration is based on your age when the disability begins.

Age Maximum benefit period
61 or younger To age 65, or to SSNRA* or 42 months, whichever is longest
62 To SSNRA* or 42 months, whichever is longest
63 To SSNRA* or 36 months, whichever is longest
64 To SSNRA* or 30 months, whichever is longest
65 24 months
66 21 months
67 18 months
68 15 months
69 or older 12 months

*SSNRA is Social Security Normal Retirement Age, your normal retirement age under the Federal Social Security Act as amended.

Contact

For help with enrollment and premium payments
Your personnel, payroll, or benefits office

For help with benefits or plan details
Standard Insurance Company
Phone: 1-800-368-2860