A Breakdown of Disability Insurance in Canada

April 1, 2023

By: Admin

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Disability insurance is an important safety net for those who find themselves unable to work due to illness or injury. It is meant to give people a sense of financial security while unable to work, so they can focus on recovery. In Canada, there are a number of different disability insurance programs available, each with their own set of rules and regulations. In this blog post, we will provide an overview of the disability insurance process in Canada and how to file a claim for it.

Types of Disability Insurance

Disability insurance comes in two forms, private and governmental. Governmental insurance is typically available to Canadian citizens and permanent residents who have disabilities. Private insurance is offered by a private insurance company and may have different requirements for eligibility. Private insurance will be the main focus of this blog post.

Short-term vs. Long-term Disability Insurance

Following a disability claim, short-term insurance will kick in first. It usually covers up to six months of financial support, but plans may vary based on factors such as amount paid monthly and the severity of the disability required to trigger payments. The specific details regarding your ability to file a disability claim are outlined in your individual insurance plan. If you do not have short-term disability insurance, and your place of employment does not offer you a plan, you may be eligible to claim Employment Insurance sickness benefits to help manage your finances in the short term.


Long-term disability insurance usually applies once the short-term insurance has ended. In order to begin claiming long-term disability insurance, you often have to have used all of your short-term disability insurance, sick days/leave, or Employment Insurance benefits. This coverage will usually replace 60-70% of your regular income. Every plan is different, and some plans might outline specific timelines or conditions required for receiving benefits.

How Do I Qualify for Disability Insurance?

Disability can be defined in different ways by different Insurance companies, so understanding the specific details of your plan is key to finding your eligibility. Make sure to familiarize yourself with your plan’s terms and conditions in order to know what to expect when making a claim. Important information to gather from your insurance provider includes its definition of disability, pre-existing condition clauses that may impact your ability to receive benefits, and if the benefits from your plan are taxable or non-taxable.

Filing a Claim

Filing for a disability claim may require you to submit in a multitude of ways, depending on the insurer. Some may offer online portals, and others may require you to reach out to them directly through an agent. It is important to fill out all the claim forms required by your insurance company, and submit them when needed. Many plans require a physician to provide information corroborating your disability claim, as a measure to prevent fraud.


Should your claim be denied, or your benefits terminated, you have the right to appeal to the insurance provider directly, in an attempt to resume the payments. Should this not succeed, further legal action may be required. Our team at Beckett has experience in disability insurance, and can help you should this situation arise. Contact us today to book a free consultation and learn more about how we can help you.

Published on April 1, 2023

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