Long-term disability insurance

Pays a portion of your salary after you have been ill or injured for an extended period of time

When you need to recover from an extended illness or injury, this benefit will start paying a portion of your salary after a certain period of time, typically after short-term disability payments end.

What it does
Pays a portion of your salary, so you can cover your expenses while you’re unable to perform your occupation. Check with your benefits representative for your company’s specific plan details.
How it works
This benefit typically starts after short-term disability payments end, paying 60% of your income up until you recover or reach normal retirement age. There is often a maximum payment based on salary.
What it doesn't do
Provide payments that start immediately. Before this coverage begins, short-term disability will typically cover the first 13 to 26 weeks of payments. This benefit does not provide job protection.

Protection to help replace income in challenging times

Long Term Disability

Only 28% of U.S. households have enough in liquid savings to cover at least 6 months of their recurring expenses.1

1 https://disabilitycanhappen.org/disability-statistic/.


  • What is long-term disability insurance?
    Long-term disability insurance provides you with income replacement and protects you against the possibility of losing income for an extended period of time due to an illness, injury or accident.
  • When do long-term disability benefit payments begin and how long can they last?
    They typically start after short-term disability payments end and can last for as long as you are disabled up to your normal retirement age (according to ssa.gov). Payments are made directly to you.
  • What is an elimination period?
    It’s a waiting period between the time when your disability begins and the time when you begin receiving benefit payments during which time you must remain disabled. The most common options are 90 days and 180 days and you should check with your benefits representative for your company’s specific plan details.
  • How much disability insurance do I need?
    That depends on your needs and what percentage of your salary you think you would need if you were unable to work.
  • How do I get disability insurance?
    Typically, you would get it through your employer, though you can purchase it on your own. It tends to be more expensive if you purchase it on your own.
  • What does it mean to be disabled?
    This is determined under the terms and provisions of the policy. Check with your benefits representative for your company’s specific plan details.
  • What can I use disability benefit payments for?
    You can use the payments for anything you see fit. They can help cover any medical expenses, you can use them to pay day-to-day expenses, or anything else you want.
  • Are there disabilities that aren't covered by the insurance?
    Every policy is different, but typically short- and long-term disability insurance will not cover things like intentionally self-inflicted injuries, loss of professional or occupational license or certificate, or injuries that happened while committing a crime or during war or an act of war, whether its declared or undeclared. It also may not cover pre-existing conditions, like a disability you were treated for in a specific period of time before you signed up for the policy.
  • Can I keep my coverage if I leave my job or my employment is terminated?
    Coverage typically ends when employment is terminated. Check with your benefits representative for your company’s specific plan details.
  • Will my disability benefit payments be taxed?
    They can be. Please seek advice based on your particular circumstances from an independent tax advisor.
  • Does workers compensation or other government benefits affect my disability benefits?
    If you are receiving income from another insurance policy, retirement benefits or a government program, such as workers’ compensation, your disability benefits may be reduced.
  • How much will I receive for disability benefits?
    The amount you receive depends on your pre-disability earnings and the benefit percentage in your policy.
  • When should I file a claim?
    As soon as possible after you’ve been disabled. If you have Short- or Long-Term Disability Insurance from Equitable, you can obtain a claim form from your employer. If your disability is scheduled, such as surgery or childbirth, you can file a claim prior to the event to help speed up the process.
  • What information do I need to file a claim?
    You’ll need your personal contact information, work schedule, reason for not being able to work, last day worked, first day of missed work, information about your condition and the contact information for your treating physician.
  • How do I file a claim?
    If you have Short-Term Disability and Long-Term Disability from Equitable, we will initiate the long-term disability claim as the end of the short-term disability benefit period approaches. If we don't insure your short-term disability policy, you will need to fill out and send a long-term disability claim form to the group claims department address on the form.
  • Once I’ve filed a claim, how long does it take to get a decision?
    This varies by carrier. If you have short- or long-term disability from Equitable, you’ll typically have a short-term disability claim decision within 10 business days and a long-term disability claim decision within 30 business days from when we received the appropriate completed claim form. If it looks like it will take longer than that, we will let you know as soon as possible and explain why it’s taking longer than expected.
  • What do I do when I’m ready to go back to work after a disability leave?
    Your claim analyst will work with you throughout the process and can help you design an appropriate return-to-work schedule when you are no longer disabled. Please notify them when you know your return-to-work date.

Equitable's full suite of insurance products

Dental Insurance Icon
Icon of Glasses
Life insurance Icon
Icon for Short Term Disability
Short-Term Disability
Icon for Long Term Disability
Long-Term Disability
Accident Icon
Icon for Critical Illness
Critical Illness
Icon for Hospital Indemnity
Hospital Indemnity

NEW MEXICO BROKER, EMPLOYERS, AND RESIDENTS: Please be advised that this Suite of Insurance Products section of our website is not currently directed to, applicable to, or intended for any person residing in the state of New Mexico.

This policy provides disability income insurance only. It does NOT provide basic hospital, basic medical or major medical insurance, and does not satisfy the requirement for minimum essential coverage under the Affordable Care Act. THIS POLICY IS NOT A MEDICARE SUPPLEMENT PLAN. The certificate has exclusions and limitations for certain conditions that may affect any benefits payable. For costs and complete details of the coverage, please see the actual policy or contact your benefits representative. Benefits payable are subject to all terms and conditions of the certificate. Policy form/contract #s: AXEBP15DI, MOEBP15DI and state variations. Availability is subject to state approvals.

State of New York: This policy provides disability income insurance only. It does NOT provide basic hospital, basic medical or major medical insurance as defined by the New York State Department of Financial Services. The expected benefit ratio for this policy is 66%. This ratio is the portion of future premiums that the company expects to return as benefits, when averaged over all people with this policy.

All group insurance products are issued either by Equitable Financial Life Insurance Company or Equitable Financial Life Insurance Company of America, which have sole responsibility for their insurance and claims-paying obligations. Some products are not available in all states.

HIPAA  |  Legal

GE-3118449.2 (01/2023) (Exp. 01/2025)