There are 18.5 million disabled people in today’s workforce. As a business owner, manager, or HR professional, you more than likely have run into a disability or reasonable accommodation request from an employee.
So, what exactly is disability leave? And what are you required to do as a business owner or manager? Keep reading to learn more about disability leave services and how to manage them for your employees.
What is Disability Leave?
Employees who have a disability and need to take leave from work can based on the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The ADA requires that employers provide reasonable accommodations for employees. This includes employee disability leave.
The ADA defines a “disability” as a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities. This also includes the ability to perform such major life activities or in the workforce.
Disability Leave for Workers
There are two types of leave for employee disability claims. They are as follows:
- Short-Term Disability Leave – Short-term disability leave is a benefit that employers have to provide to their employees. It’s a type of insurance that covers income and health benefits if an employee is unable to work due to illness or injury.
The employer has to provide this benefit to maintain compliance with the law. They also want their employees’ well-being, so they offer this benefit to keep them safe.
- Long-Term Disability Leave – Long-term disability leave is a type of insurance that employers have to pay for to provide their employees with financial protection. It provides the employee who is unable to work due to an illness or injury with income while they are out of work.
Employers usually offer long-term disability as a supplement to short-term disability. Short-term disability only provides income for a maximum of six months. This type of leave is usually offered as part of an employee’s benefits package. It may also be a part of the employer’s group health insurance plan.
Managing disability leave for employees is a time-consuming and expensive process.
Employers that have more than 50 employees have to pay their employees on disability leave regular wages. Employers must also keep paying their insurance premiums while they are on disability leave.
Some employers decide to offer a reduced work schedule during the time of their employee’s disability. This is a good option for employers as it doesn’t require them to hire a new person or pay overtime when the disabled employee returns to work.
Learn More About Disability Leave Services
This article covered disability leave services that businesses have to provide employees. We hope you have a better understanding of the types of leave you have to offer employees. If you need expert consultation on ADA accommodations or disability leave, contact one of our vocational experts today to get one-on-one assistance.
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