Long-Term Disability Coverage
Tufts University contracts with Unum to offer Long-Term Disability (LTD) coverage to eligible employees, should you become disabled because of a non-work-related illness or accident.
Long-Term Disability is an income replacement plan that provides you with either 40% or 60% of your basic monthly earnings up to a maximum monthly benefit of $12,000. This is a voluntary benefit, meaning that if you enroll in LTD you will pay the full cost of coverage. The cost is deducted from your paycheck after taxes are taken. If you have a LTD benefit paid out to you, that money will not be taxed.
You have two options to enroll in LTD coverage:
- A 40% coverage level
- A 60% coverage level
If your disability begins before age 62, your LTD benefits are payable until your normal Social Security retirement age. If your disability begins after age 62, your benefits are pro-rated until age 69, with a maximum duration of 12 months from age 70 onward.
How to Enroll
You can enroll in Long-Term Disability coverage using eServe within 30 days of becoming benefits-eligible, or during Open Enrollment. Unum, will reach out to you directly to complete an Evidence of Insurability form and any required supplemental information. Once Tufts Support Services has received approval from Unum, coverage will begin on the following schedule:
- A new or updated policy requested during Open Enrollment will go into effect on January 1 of the following year.
- Coverage requests not approved before January 1 will go into effect on the first of the month following approval.
- Policy requests for new employees will go into effect on the effective date of hire.
- As a new hire, you are automatically enrolled in the 60% option for Long-Term Disability. If you wish to change to the 40% option or opt out of participation in the plan, you may do so within your 30-day new hire enrollment period.
- Enrollment changes are only allowed during Open Enrollment, not as a Life Event.
- International Employees are not eligible to participate in the domestic based Unum Long Term Disability (LTD) plan.
If you enroll, you also have access to enhanced benefits, including a conversion provision and a critical illness benefit.
- A conversion provision means that you can convert your coverage to an individual policy if you leave the university for other employment. To be eligible you must be insured under the group plan for at least 12 consecutive months.
Evidence of Insurability
You may be required to provide health information as part of “Evidence of Insurability” to Unum when you request to enroll in this benefit or increase your coverage.
The need to provide EOI is dependent on the type of insurance coverage and when you are applying as follows:
- During your 30-day new hire enrollment period, if applying for four or five times annual salary coverage level
- During Open Enrollment, if you are applying to enroll or increase coverage during Open Enrollment.
There is a pre-existing condition exclusion for the 12 months following your new enrollment or increase in coverage level. This means that Unum will not cover a disability that is already known for 12 months from the date of your LTD plan enrollment or the date your increased benefit takes effect.
After the 12-month waiting period, any pre-existing conditions will be covered per the standard Unum policy. Please see the Benefits Booklet for more detailed information.
Benefits on LTD
If your application for LTD is approved, Tufts University will provide benefit plan coverage as follows for you, as long as you remain disabled and eligible under the terms of the LTD Plan.
Health Insurance Benefits
If enrolled, you and your family will continue to be enrolled in the Tufts University Health Plan as of your “in-benefit” eligibility date (date when LTD income benefits begin) that Unum designates. The university will pay the full cost for the continuation of your health coverage for up to 24 months while on LTD. (Tufts will not reimburse monthly Medicare premiums, if applicable).
Basic, Supplemental and Dependent Life Insurance Benefits
Under the Waiver of Premium provision in the Life Insurance plan, If enrolled and you meet the two conditions noted below, your death benefit protection will be extended while you are *Totally Disabled. Premiums for your University Funded Basic Life, Employee Optional Life and Dependent Life Insurance will be waived and coverage will continue at no cost to you as of the date Unum receives documentation proof as described in the Unum Life Insurance Benefits Booklet.
- You become Totally Disabled while you are a Covered Person
- You are less than age 70 when your Total Disability starts.
*Definition of Total Disability: You are “Totally Disabled” when, due to sickness, injury or both, you are not able to perform for wage or profit, the material and substantial duties of any job for which you are reasonably fitted by your education, training or experience.
University-Funded Retirement Plan - 401(a)
As part of your LTD benefit, a 401(a) contribution will be made in an amount equal to 5% or 10% of your annual salary prior to your disability. These contributions will be made directly to the retirement plan vendor you choose (Fidelity or TIAA) for as long as you remain disabled or until you reach the maximum age under the terms of the LTD plan. You can view your Retirement Plan statements online. Please contact Fidelity Investments (800-343-0860) or TIAA (800-842-2776) for information on your account.
If enrolled, your coverage under Delta Dental Premier Plan will continue for the first six months following your LTD approval date. For this six-month period, you will be billed by Tufts Support Services (TSS) for the employee cost of your dental plan coverage. At the end of the six-month period, your Delta Dental Plan coverage will be terminated and EBPA, our COBRA third party administrator, will send you a COBRA notice and information to assist in your decision regarding continued dental coverage.
If enrolled, your EyeMed Vision Plan coverage will continue for the first six months following your LTD approval date. For this six-month period, you will be billed by Tufts Support Services (TSS) for the employee cost of your vision plan coverage. At the end of the six-month period, your EyeMed Vision Plan coverage will be terminated and EBPA, our COBRA third party administrator, will send you a COBRA notice and information to assist in your decision regarding continued vision plan coverage.
Accidental Death and Dismemberment Insurance
If enrolled, your coverage under Unum's Accidental Death and Dismemberment Insurance ends on your LTD approval date. There is no provision for continued coverage.
MetLife Legal Plans
If enrolled, your coverage under MetLife Legal Plans will end upon your LTD approval. This will not affect any current legal claim that is in process. You have the right to convert your plan for 30 days from your benefits termination date. If interested in continuing your MetLife Legal Plans coverage, please call MetLife Legal Plans at 800-821-6400.
Self-Funded Retirement Plan - 403(b)
If enrolled, your participation in the Self-Funded Retirement Plan will be terminated effective the date you are approved for LTD benefits. Please contact Fidelity Investments (800-343-0860) or TIAA (800-842-2776) for information on your account.
Additional information is available in the Long Term Disability Benefits Booklet. LTD benefits begin 140 days after your disability begins so it's important to contact Unum as soon as you think you may need to request a leave of absence.
Provided by Human Resources