You have been hearing about the phrase temporary disability insurance and you are not sure how it differs from other forms of disability laws. Well, I am going to be explaining to you what the TDI means and entails.

temporary disability insurance

Temporary disability is a term used to refer to a temporary impairment in otherwise healthy individuals. There is a strict definition of the world temporary here; as it is used for any form of disability occurring to any individual which does not last up to a year.

Take for example, if an otherwise healthy individual sustains a fall or an accident that results in fracture of the limb that would keep him out of work for weeks or months, he is said to have sustained a temporary injury with the need to be catered for by temporary disability insurance.

An additional condition is for the injury or whatever form of disability is to be non-job related. Also classified under temporary disability is pregnancy; we, however, know that pregnancy is not a form of disability but rather placed in this category for convenience sake.

Here in America, we have the Act called the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990 which regulates every form of laws in the land, affecting people with disabilities.

Events catered for by the temporary disability insurance are however not reflected in it, necessitating the need for temporary disability insurance.

The TDI programs are designed to provide wage replacement for those who fall under my earlier definition of temporary disability.

This is necessary because employers do not pay wages generally to injured people who are unable to attend to their job as long as the disability was not caused during job service delivery. The need of the TDI is not catered for by the central laws but are rather gotten through the social security system which allows withdrawal of contributions into the state unemployment funds to cater for the payment of the TDI.

States with statutory disability plans

The overwhelming majority of American states do not have the temporary disability insurance program with California, New Jersey, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, Hawaii, and New York city being the only places with a defined TDI program.

In the two later states, the TDI program is not administered by the State employment security agency unlike the former 4. Hawaii disability is regulated under the Temporary Disability Income Division of the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations, while that of New York is looked after by the Worker’s compensation board.

Temporary Disability benefits

This involves the insurance company paying you a certain percentage of your salary which is usually between 40 to 60 percent of your income when you are injured and could not perform your job.

This payment is usually drawn from the unemployment insurance scheme; there are, however, employers who make provision for the payment.   Workplace injuries are covered by the employer from a worker’s compensation package.


The temporary disability insurance coverage differs from the unemployment coverage in all American states. The unemployment insurance is strictly for people who are not gainfully employed while TDI is for employed people who are temporarily out of employment because of a condition that will soon be overcome.

The coverage can begin right from the day of insult, but it is usually within the first 1-14 days to anytime within one year. For an employee who may be out of work for longer than a year, they are usually switched to the long-term disability program.

Disability evaluation

You need to first determine the available options for you to have temporary disability insurance. You might be required to present evidence from your doctor that shows that you have a form of disability and how long off you will most likely take.

The insurance companies usually have their own teams of doctors and insurance analyst who determines the likely extent of the injury and a possibility for placement on the long term disability package.

When applying for TDI you will be required to fill the temporary disability index form which includes basically your personal and employment data.

Whatever form of injury you have, there are social packages to ensure you are well taken care of.


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