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How to Apply for Short Term Disability in Canada?

How to Apply for Short Term Disability in Canada Featured Image

How to Apply for Short Term Disability in Canada?

The journey through life is incredible, yet it occasionally knocks us off our feet. And we sometimes find ourselves in temporary sickness that calls for financial support. Gladly, during your miserable short-term disability period, you can seek financial support from the Canadian government.

However, applying for short term disability benefits could make you even more stressed as it requires proper documents and procedures to follow.

So, if you or your beloved one is going through a short term disability and finding a way to apply for the benefits, you are in the right place.

Ease yourself by going through the information given here and learn how to apply for short term disability in this blog.

What is Short Term Disability?

Short-term disability refers to a medical condition, such as an illness or injury, that makes it impossible for you to carry out your regular job responsibilities.

While you are absent from work, there are various ways to make up for lost income:

  • Paid sick leave from your company: Your company might provide paid sick leave that you might spend before submitting an application for other benefits.
  • Short-term disability insurance: Your company might make this benefit available to you. It will replace 50–100% of your income when you’re out of work because of a short-term disability.
  • Sickness benefit under employment insurance: Protection under Canada’s unemployment insurance may be available.
  • Long term disability insurance: Long-term disability insurance is for people who are unable to work for a long period of time, as its name suggests.

All of these advantages as well as the guidelines for application will be covered in this article. You can look into these possibilities and see whether you qualify if you are unable to work because of a short-term disability.

How Does Short Term Disability Work in Canada?

Normally, short-term disability benefits include medical costs from an accident or any sickness that stops you from working. With this benefit plan, you will receive payment when insured for any time off from work.

So, What is Considered a Short Term Disability?

Your earnings can be interrupted by a variety of medical conditions. These may include persistent migraines, heart illness, back problems, and chronic discomfort. Also, you might be unable to work due to mental health conditions like depression and anxiety.

If your illness or injury affects your capacity to work, you can claim disability benefits. And you must check your policy thoroughly because disability requirements are quite complex.

Where Do You Get Short Term Disability Benefits From?

You receive short-term disability benefits from your employer, government, and private insurance. In mind, you must confirm where you will get the support.

So, check the benefits you get from the organization you work for to know if your employer provides coverage for short term disability. You get the complete details if you ask the administrator or human resources.

If you know your employer offer this insurance, you need to claim for a short term disability benefit. If your employer doesn’t provide support, you could be eligible for Employment Insurance (EI) benefits from the government.

How Do Short Term Disability Benefits Work?

Usually, the short term-disability provides benefits for up to 6 months. If your disability could carry more than that, you may not be eligible for the benefit.

To determine how long you will be off work, consult your doctor. If your doctor advises that you stay off the job for more than six months, you can file for long-term disability benefits.

Additionally, you should speak with your employer, doctor, or treatment team to ensure a reasonable and safe return to work strategy. This can entail taking up some small responsibilities or returning to part-time employment.

How to Apply for Short Term Disability in Canada?

Since you can claim short term disability benefits Canada from various authorities, the processes also differ.

Let’s know how to apply for short-term disability in Canada. Before that, let’s first know about employment insurance as it is connected to short-term disability.

Employment Insurance (EI)

We have mentioned that you can get it from the government as well. And, EI short term disability is the option for that. This support is for the unemployed workers.

This beneficial program support workers who can’t attend work for certain life events. Concerning that, if you can’t work due to a medical condition, Employment Insurance (EI) sickness benefits can help you out financially for up to 15 weeks.

You must complete 420 hours of insurable employment in your qualifying period to be eligible for EI payments. But you might go through a violation of assessment which could increase the insurable hours. You can go thereto find out if you qualify for this insurance.

That will cover 55% of your regular income, and weekly the pay can reach as high as $638. And you must obtain a medical certificate to legitimate your physical condition preventing you from working.

How to apply

Once you carefully check the eligibility, you need to gather the necessary documents, fill up the EI short term disability form, and submit all the paperwork. After that, you will get an email for the next step.

Employer-provided insurance

This support from your employer can assist you in getting through the difficulties of short term disability.

Generally, employers in Canada help workers by collaborating with Manulife disability insurance, a public service. If your organization has a short term disability policy, it is usually disbursed through group health insurance.

However, you don’t get a separate short term disability plan in this solution. According to the rule, when you are absent from work for a brief timeframe, often up to 17 weeks is considered a short term disability.

A variety of plans are available from Manulife for your employers. Therefore, the employer’s choice of package will determine the terms of your short term disability compensation.

How to apply

By completing specific forms, you can request Manulife short term disability compensation. With that, you will need to provide a medical report and a report from your company.

Manulife will decide to accept or reject your claim after they review your application. If your short-term disability claim is rejected, you can appeal the decision.

Note that, depending on your workplace circumstances, the guidelines for how to appeal will vary.

Documents You Need to Claim Short Term Disability

Once you know who you get the benefits, you need to apply for short-term disability benefits, and you can start preparing for it.

The following instruction will help you with how to apply for short term disability in Canada.

  • After collecting the form, fill it out completely. Also, you need to confirm if you are provided all the information correctly. For that, you can take help from someone close.
  • Make sure your doctor, treatment group, or specialist completes the necessary paperwork and delivers the clinical data needed to support your claims. Your insurer will use this information to decide whether to pay for your benefits claim.
  • Clear and readable photocopies of your birth certificate, driver’s license, or passport issued by the government. Also, you may need to provide your SIN number, banking details for direct deposit, an mailing address, and the address of your employers.

Short-term disability benefits for self-employed professionals

According to the Employment Insurance Act, if self-employed register for access to the EI program, they can apply for EI special benefits.

However, you can register if you own your own business. But you will be ineligible for EI payments if you possess more than 40% of the stock in the company. Additionally, you need to be a Canadian citizen or legal permanent resident.

Final Remarks

A sudden sickness or injury that prevents you from working. However, disability insurance can assist in safeguarding living for you and your family. So, check if you qualify.

Additionally, you should apply as soon as you leave work for disability. The best time is the first 30 days. Besides, it will take your insurer at least 10 working days to review your claim and decide.

We hope these details on the deadline and options help you to go in the right direction with the short term disability application.


If you have further queries, look over the following answers below:

How much does EI pay for short term disability?

Until the prospective authority reviews your application, you don’t get a precise estimate of how much you will get. However, the standard rule suggests that the short-term disability plan must pay out at least 55% and up to a maximum of $638 of an employee’s typical weekly insurable earnings.

As of January 1, 2022, the highest annual insurable wage is $60,300. As a result, your weekly earnings are limited to a maximum of $638.

How does short term disability work in Canada?

While you are ill or wounded, short term disability insurance normally pays benefits for up to 6 months. And you can receive sickness benefits in one of the three-way—employer, government, and private insurance.

If you do not have short term disability insurance and your employer does not provide it, you might qualify for the benefits under Employment Insurance (EI).

How do I ask my doctor for a short term disability?

Once you choose the right doctor to advocate for acquiring short term disability benefits, you need to write down your condition in as detail as possible. Next, call the doctor to make an appointment to review your papers.

You need to explain how your condition stops you and how a short term disability claim can support you. If you can convince, finally, you get a Letter to support.

Can you get a short term disability for depression and anxiety?

Yes, depression and anxiety qualify as short-term illnesses. But you need to get diagnosed by a certified specialist first. If you are already diagnosed, you need to get a Letter of support from your doctor to help you get short term disability coverage.