Traveling While Receiving LTD Benefits

Traveling While Receiving LTD Benefits

Adeel filed a long-term disability claim after he fell down the stairs of his house and when the effects of the subsequent concussion severely limited his ability to do his job. His claim was accepted, and Adeel spent the next few months at home recuperating from his injury.

Things started to come apart months later when he decided to make a trip to Vancouver Island. He felt like he deserved a vacation after being house-bound for so much time, and consequently took his children and his girlfriend to the West Coast for a low-key trip to visit family.

Adeel didn’t have any second thoughts when he booked the trip and was even hoping that it would have a positive effect on his recovery. He thought nothing of the pictures he shared on social media while he was away, most of which depicted Adeel relaxing with his family.  

He was therefore stunned when he found out, on his return, that the insurance company had canceled his benefits. The company had seen the posts on social media and argued that the posts proved that Adeel was no longer sick enough to warrant disability benefits.

Sadly, Adeel’s story is typical in insurance cases. Insurance companies will monitor the social media accounts of people receiving long-term disability benefits and will take away those benefits if they see something that they deem incompatible with a disability.

However, that doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to stay at home. As long as you take certain precautions, you should still be able to travel after filing a long-term disability claim. You can also learn from Adeel’s example. These are some tips about what to do (and what not to do) when traveling while you are receiving benefits:

1.     Get Medical Clearance: If you are dealing with a disability, it’s always wise to consult with your doctor before embarking on any significant journey. As it relates to your insurance policy, a doctor will also be able to attest to the fact that your trip will not conflict with your treatment schedule.

2.     Review Your Policy: Some disability policies will have travel restrictions and may require you to stay in Canada to continue receiving benefits. Make sure you familiarize yourself with those rules before booking a vacation.

3.     Keep a Journal: Write down any medical issues that you experience while you are away, especially if your disability limits your participation in other activities. The record will serve as evidence that shows that your disability is still affecting your daily life.  

4.     Stay Away from Social Media: Images on social media can often be misconstrued and can give people the impression that you’re doing better than you actually are. With that in mind, there’s simply no reason to take a chance. Try to avoid posting on social media so you don’t jeopardize your benefits with a snooping insurance provider.

5.     Contact Your Administrator: If you’re worried about the optics of a possible trip, it doesn’t hurt to call your claims administrator to make sure that everything is compatible with your insurance policy.

Everyone deserves a vacation from time to time. You’ll need to be a bit more careful, but you should still be able to get away while you’re dealing with your disability!  

*Please note that all names and identifying details have been changed to protect the confidentiality of all involved. 

Has your long-term disability claim been denied? Contact Share Lawyers and put our experience to work for you. We have recently settled cases against Great-West Life, Desjardins, Manulife, RBC Insurance, Sun Life, and many more. We offer free consultations and there are no fees unless we win your case. Find out if you have a disability case.