4 Steps to Make Your First Disability Claim

A disability can be something that is either short-term, long-term and perhaps even permanent. When you suffer from a disability, it can be very difficult, if not impossible to work.

This can be a little frightening, because you will need money coming in from somewhere. After all, you have obligations, such as paying bills, paying the rent and you also need food and water. You can make a disability claim on a temporary or long-term basis. Here’s what you need to do in Canada to make a disability claim so that you can survive.

1. Find Out What You Qualify For

There are different types of disability benefits. You may not qualify for a lot of them. Research the disability benefits you may be entitled to. You may qualify for one or even more than one. For example, some common sources of disability income include sick pay from the employer, short-term benefits, Employment Insurance sickness benefits, long-term benefits, disability payments from Canada Pension Plan, Workers Compensation and income support from your province.

2. Make An Appointment With Your Doctor

When you make a disability claim, you must see your doctor. If you think you can skip this step, don’t even bother applying, because you won’t get a penny. In fact, sometimes, even with your doctor’s help, you can still be denied. You can appeal this but it will take longer. However, your doctor needs to be convinced and you must have his or her support, otherwise it can be hard. You need to show that you have tried everything humanly possible to remain employed.

3. From Employment To Sick Leave

Once you have the support of your doctor and all goes well, you need to make the switch from being employed to going on sick leave. You need to be careful here. You can always hire a lawyer to guide you during tricky situations. The thing is, you need to be careful to protect your employment, the workplace pension and the group medical plan. Remember, there can be some tension between your employer and yourself. In fact, some employers show no understanding whatsoever. If possible, ask your doctor to write to your employer to confirm all the details.

Sometimes, an employer may try to get you to resign or accept a severance package. This is where a lawyer can help. It can seem tempting to accept this, however, this could also mean you won’t get long-term disability benefits. The money you get from your employer may be nothing compared to the long-term money from disability.

4. Getting The Right Forms

Remember, there are various categories, so get the right forms that pertain to your situation. You may also need to send some forms to your doctor to fill in and sign. When you get the help of your doctor, you will need to pay him or her for filling these forms. This is not covered by your health card, so be aware of this.

Make sure that you gather all your information and any supporting documents and submit them. If you are asked for further information, you need to provide this also. Wait to hear back regarding their decision. It could take a while but it should not take months. The best thing to do is also seek the advice of an employment lawyer who can guide you every step of the way.