Disability Claim Tips With Ed Comitz, Esq.
Disability Claim Tips With Ed Comitz, Esq.
This guide is intended as a practical resource for dentists who think they might want to file a disability claim. Check in regularly for new claim tips.
Edward Comitz

If I file a Partial Disability Claim How Do They Calculate Loss of Income? What If My Income Goes Down Because of Coronavirus?

3/25/2020 11:43:00 AM   |   Comments: 0   |   Views: 83

Each disability insurance policy has a different formula for calculating prior income and loss of income. Some policies look to the year or 24 months immediately prior to date the disability claim was filed, other policies use averages over a several year period, and some policies give dentists the option to pick between the two.

Once your prior income is determined, it is typically averaged out on a monthly basis and compared to your actual monthly income to determine the loss of income, expressed as a percentage. If you meet a certain percentage loss, usually 15% or 20%, you are eligible for benefits.

If your disability policy averages out prior income over a period of several years, the impact on prior income will likely not be that significant if the drop in income dips for a few months and then recovers. However, if the policy looks to the period immediately prior to filing the claim, a series of a few months with little to no income could have a more drastic impact on how prior income is calculated. And if your prior income remains low when you ultimately file a partial disability claim, it becomes much harder to meet the threshold loss of income to qualify for partial disability benefits.

See also Can I File a Disability Claim if My Office Has Already Closed?

Action Step: If you are considering filing a partial disability claim, review your policy’s partial disability provision and become familiar with how “prior income” and “loss of income” are calculated under your policy. If you had a drop in income related a disabling condition prior to the loss of income from the coronavirus, and you are able to back that up with documentation, evaluate whether it would be appropriate under your policy to file partial disability claim based upon that loss of income.

Each dentist’s claim for disability benefits involves different facts, disabling conditions, policy requirements, insurance companies, etc. While our attorneys are making an effort to share general knowledge with the dental community and answer dentists’ questions about the impact of the coronavirus, this not a substitute for individualized advice from an experienced disability insurance lawyer. If you would like to speak with our attorneys and have them take an in-depth look at your particular situation, please feel free to contact us directly.

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