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Does Short-Term Disability Insurance Cover Pregnancy?

The benefits included in a short-term disability insurance plan could potentially help cover costs while on maternity leave. 

If you become temporarily disabled (either because of an illness or injury) and are unable to work, short-term disability insurance pays a percentage of your salary for a short period of time. Paid maternity leave may be offered through employer-provided short-term disability insurance.

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Maternity Leave

While on maternity leave, short-term disability insurance offered through an employer may provide:

  • Typically up to two-thirds of your salary for four to six weeks. The specific amount will vary depending on your employer and the STDI plan they offer.
  • Extended coverage after birth if recommended by your doctor

Coverage Terms And Restrictions

Many programs have an elimination period that may require you to be out of work up to a certain length of time (usually one to two weeks) before you can start to collect short-term disability benefits. Your employer may also require you to use a combination of sick leave, vacation, or personal days before your benefits kick in.

Because short-term disability isn’t mandated in any way, one of the first things you should do when you become pregnant is to confirm what your insurance program’s process and pay conditions are.

Each employer program has its own rules for receiving maternity leave benefits. If your employer does not offer it as an employer or employee paid benefit, or you feel your employer coverage isn't sufficient to meets your needs, check with your state disability program to find out what it offers in terms of short-term disability benefits for pregnancy, and what other options you may have.

Keep in mind, not every state allows employees to use STDI benefits for maternity leave. Talk to your company's HR department or benefits manager to learn more.

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*Applications for insurance may be subject to acceptance by insurer. Rates and coverage amounts will depend upon the carrier selected.

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