You never think it is going to happen to you, but when long-term disability strikes it can be devastating. It would be irresponsible to yourself and your family not to be prepared for this possibility, because it can happen at any time. It could be due to a work-related injury, as a result of an accident, or because of a disease or medical condition. At the very least you should know what the possible sources for claiming long-term disability benefits are and what you can expect.


Most larger companies have some type of long term disability insurance as part of their employee benefits, although it is not required by law. When it is offered, it is usually regulated by the rules laid down by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act or ERISA.

Workers’ compensation

When the cause of a disability is work-related, then you may be able to claim disability benefits from your workers’ compensation insurance, which many employers are required by law to provide. It applies for both short- and long-term disability as well as partial and total disability.

Social Security

You may also make a claim for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) as well as  Supplemental Security Income (SSI) in some cases. However, only those who require in-home or residential health care are eligible for SSI. SSDI and SSI payouts will depend on the living situation of the claimant, their disability, and their work history. However, it is important to note that it can take a long time for a claim to be approved at both the federal and state levels.

These sources of financial assistance for long-term disability are not mutually exclusive, so you may be able to receive benefits from one or more of them. Because making a claim for long-term disability can be complicated and tedious, it is usually a good idea to get some assistance when filing a claim or disputing a denial.