California Disability Benefits: Short-Term or Long-Term?

Sometimes people are just not able to work because of short-term or long-term disabilities. Of course, the bills still pile up whether you go to work or not. In addition to federal government benefits like Social Security Disability Insurance, California workers are covered by a state disability program. California State Disability Insurance (SDI) is an

California Disability Benefits: What’s Available?

There are two forms of benefits:

  • Disability Insurance (DI). The monthly payment is calculated using a base period of the worker’s wages.
  • Paid Family Leave (PFL). This benefit goes to people who need time off from work to care for a close family member who is seriously ill. It can also be used by people who have recently given birth, have adopted a child, or who participate in a foster care program.

More information about California disability benefits can be found at the Employment Development Department’s website.

Can I Qualify for California Disability Benefits?

As a California worker, you may qualify for SDI if you lost wages due to any of the following:

  • A non-work-related illness or injury; or
  • Pregnancy or childbirth.

Please note:

California disability benefits are available for short-term disabilities, not long-term.

For example, Amelia’s doctor ordered her to stop working for the final six weeks of her difficult pregnancy. Amelia should apply for SDI. As a California worker with a short-term pregnancy-related condition, she should qualify.

However, Ken is permanently disabled due to a work-related lung disorder. He may be eligible for workers’ compensation or federal disability benefits. However, Ken likely will not qualify for California disability benefits because his disability is long-term.

There is an exception, though. California disability benefits may pay an injured worker if:

  • Workers’ comp benefits are lower than SDI, or
  • The workers’ comp decision has been delayed.

Do You or Someone You Know Need to Apply for Disability?

Get the help of an experienced attorney. You need someone on your side who understands the system.

The attorneys at The Law Offices of Martin Taller have helped many clients receive the disability benefits they deserve. For a free consultation, call us at 714-385-8100. Though our office is located in Anaheim, we assist clients throughout Southern California.

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