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Long-Term Disability (LTD)

Administered by
Cigna – all payments are made by Cigna. 

The University pays the premiums.

Full-time employees are eligible for this benefit immediately. If you are not in active service on the date your insurance would otherwise be effective, it will be effective on your first day of active service.

After meeting a six-month elimination period while disabled, a covered employee may be eligible to receive disability payments that can be as much as 66 2/3 percent of his or her pre-disability monthly salary, up to a $10,000 monthly income benefit maximum.

Monthly disability payments will be reduced by disability benefits received from Social Security, Worker's Compensation, working income, and other sources (as determined by the LTD plan). The minimum monthly income benefit is $100. In certain cases disability coverage may also provide return-to-work incentives that can alter monthly benefits for a limited period of time.

(Exception: An active employee who is determined to be totally disabled after reaching the age of 68 1/2 is eligible for disability benefits only up to a maximum benefit period of one year.)

Note: There are numerous provisions and limitations that are not mentioned in this summary. Please see the LTD section of the Plan Document for more detailed information.

Procedures for Applying for Long-Term Disability

  • If an employee has a serious health condition, which makes him or her unable to perform his or her job, he or she should contact Human Resources to discuss short term disability and Family Medical Leave. If it looks like the employee will not be able to return to work after short term disability he or she should begin the process of filing for Long-Term Disability (LTD) with Cigna. If the employee is already on short term disability with Cigna, Cigna will help the employee transition to LTD if eligible.
  • Disability may entitle employees to Social Security disability benefits. Once an employee has begun the long term disability application process they must also apply for Social Security disability benefits with the Social Security office. Cigna will assist employees with the Social Security filing process.
  • Once an employee is approved for LTD they are no longer considered an active employee. Their employment will end effective the day before the LTD effective date.
  • If the employee is covered by a University health insurance and/or dental plan, the employee and/or any eligible dependents will be offered continuous coverage under a COBRA plan at the employee's expense.
  • All optional benefits the employee may have are discontinued when the employee goes on LTD. Some optional benefits may be continued directly through the vendor.
  • If the employee is eligible for Social Security disability and Medicare, the University will offer the employee a Medicare supplement plan, which is currently paid for by the University. This plan does not cover prescription drugs. It is the disabled employee’s responsibility to notify Human Resources when they have been approved for Medicare (usually 24 months after disability began) so they can be placed on the Medicare Supplement for Disabled employees.
  • If the disabled employee would prefer, he or she may continue COBRA coverage until it expires before moving to the University provided Medicare supplement plan. Please refer to the COBRA section of the Plan Document for more information. If the employee chooses not to go on the University provided Medicare supplement plan when they go onto Medicare or when the COBRA benefit expires, they will not be able to enroll at a later time.
  • If the employee is no longer determined to be disabled (Cigna makes this determination) then the employee is no longer eligible for the University provided Medicare Supplement plan.

Health Coverage At Age 65
Medicare coverage for disabled staff hired after July 1, 1992, and disabled faculty hired on or after September 1, 2003, will end when the employee turns 65. Please refer to the Insurance for Retirees page for information regarding medical insurance. 

If the disabled employee was determined to no longer be disabled prior to age 65 then they would not be eligible for the University post retirement Medicare Supplement.

Life Insurance
Life insurance may continue under certain circumstances when an employee has been classified by the LTD carrier as disabled.

Tuition Remission
Full-time employees who are approved for LTD may be eligible for the tuition remission benefits that would have been theirs had they not become disabled (see Tuition Remission for further information).

If an employee is approved for a LTD by the LTD carrier and is receiving disability payments, they should contact the LTD carrier to determine if they are eligible to receive retirement plan contributions. Monthly payments to the employee's University-sponsored retirement plan may be continued for those employees who were enrolled in a retirement plan when the condition causing the disability occurred. The disability plan may continue to contribute to the employee's retirement account until LTD benefits cease or until the employee closes his or her retirement account, whichever occurs first.

Note:  Certain references have been made concerning other contracts and benefits such as life insurance, long-term disability insurance, short-term disability insurance, and medical insurance. These references are provided as general guidance and are not a replacement or supplement to the terms and provisions of the actual contracts or benefit referenced. For specific information concerning these policies please see the Plan Document.

Disabled Employees Under 65

Disabled employees on Medicare under age 65 can apply for a guaranteed issue Medicare supplement.

Disabled employees must apply for coverage when they initially go on to Medicare, disabled persons may not apply afterwards.

This supplement does not provide coverage for prescriptions.

Disabled employees must notify the University upon Medicare eligibility and must be legal residents of Virginia in order to qualify.

Guaranteed Issue Medicare Part B Supplement

Guaranteed Issue Medicare Part F Supplement (closed, no longer accepting new enrollments)

Questions About Benefits?

Contact Human Resources at (804) 289-URHR (8747) or email