Long-term Disability (LTD)

Most HEU members are entitled to Long-term Disability benefits through their employer-paid LTD plan. Your collective agreement will confirm whether or not you have LTD coverage.

How does the LTD application process work?

Employees who have been unable to work for an extended period of time due to sickness, accident or injury will be contacted by the employer, who will then ask the worker to apply for LTD benefits. Members with an LTD plan are entitled to apply for benefits following a three- to four-month absence from the workplace.

The LTD application form is available from the employer and must be completed by the worker, the employer and the attending physician. The waiting, or qualification, period is five months from the last day of work. During this period, a member must be under the continuing care of an attending physician or specialist.

A worker who applies for LTD benefits must show that they meet the criteria under the plan’s definition of disability. According to this definition, a worker must be unable to perform the duties required by their own occupation. This definition is in effect for the first two years. After that time, if the worker is still unable to return to work, the eligibility requirements change from being unable to do one’s original job, to not being able to work in any occupation. At this point, the worker’s position will be posted by the employer.

Canada Pension Plan (CPP) disability benefits

If your application for LTD benefits is accepted, you will be required to apply for federal assistance through the Canada Pension Plan for people with disabilities. If you do not have an LTD plan, you may qualify for CPP disability benefits if you have worked prior to your sickness or injury.

The Disability Allilance BC (formerly BC Coalition of People with Disabilities), a province-wide advocacy organization, also has information about when and how to apply for CPP disability benefits.

We can help

HEU will assist members in the appeal process, if their applications for benefits are denied or if their LTD claims are terminated.

If you need assistance with an LTD appeal, please call the HEU WCB hotline at 604-456-7186 (toll-free: 1-877-438-5550) and leave a detailed message for one of our representatives.

For more information on LTD entitlements, waiting periods and benefits, please refer to your collective agreement.

If you have an active LTD claim, you can access your personal information on the Healthcare Benefit Trust website by registering online with Caresnet.