Continuing coverage while on leave

How plan members can continue coverage while on approved leave

Plan members who are on Maternity, Parental, Compassionate Leave or another approved leave of absence can continue to be eligible for coverage under their group benefits plan.

To be eligible, plan members:

  • Must continue to pay premiums. Plan sponsors must arrange to collect these premiums from the members on leave and remit with their bill payment.
  • Must not engage in any other occupation or work of any sort.

The “not actively at work” exception ends when the leave ends.

Opting out of short-term (STD) and long-term disability (LTD)

If an employee takes a leave, they cannot opt out of disability (STD/LTD) coverage, unless they are paying the full premium (non-taxable plan). An employee who opts out will be reinstated when they return to work, as long as the employer notifies us within 31 days.

Be aware that employees who opt out will not be eligible for disability benefits if they become disabled during their leave. When they return to work and benefits are reinstated, the LTD pre-existing exclusion period starts over.

On the other hand, employees who choose not to opt out will continue to pay premiums. If they become disabled while on leave, their benefits will start the day they return to work, provided the elimination period is up.

For more information, contact your Group Benefits Representative.