What is an income protection claim?
Income protection claims, also known as Total and Temporary Disability (TTD) or Salary Continuance claims, provide you financial support when an injury or illness is holding you back from earning income from your regular job. We understand that living without your regular income can adversely affect your financial responsibilities, lifestyle and stress levels, and we are here to guide you through this difficult time.
You may be covered for protection insurance:
- automatically through your superannuation fund membership, with premiums paid from your account balance;
- under a private policy purchased through a broker, financial adviser or directly with an insurer;
- through your employer of memberships you hold with unions and other organisations.
It’s also important to know that if your injury or illness is likely to prevent you from permanently returning to your normal work duties (rather than just temporarily), you may also be eligible to make a claim for a Total and Permanent Disability (TPD) lump sum. Your dedicated team of Maurice Blackburn experts and income protection lawyers can help you understand which type of claim will give you the best result for your unique situation.
What does income protection cover?
Generally speaking, income protection covers you for about 75% of the salary you were receiving before you were injured or fell ill. It may also top up your superannuation contributions.
Along with this percentage, there are some key terms and conditions that will affect your payout, including:
- Whether you have returned to work on a limited basis with reduced earnings, in which case you may be entitled to a partial benefit or ‘top up’
- Whether you are receiving other income replacement payments such as workers compensation weekly payments, sick leave or Centrelink
- Whether you have reached retirement age when income protection usually ceases
- Whether your employment has been terminated
- Whether you are eligible to claim or have been paid a TPD insurance benefit
- Following a successful claim, you will receive income protection payouts until the end of the benefit period which depends on your policy terms (usually 2 years or to age 65) or until you are able to return to work (whichever is earlier)
It’s also important to know that you will likely have to go through a 30 to 90 day waiting period before you can start receiving monthly payments from your income protection cover.
Your local Maurice Blackburn team of income protection lawyers can help you claim every last benefit you’re entitled to and make sure you receive them as quickly as possible so you can focus on getting better.
Why Maurice Blackburn?
We understand the impact an unexpected illness or injury can have on your life and that the last thing you want to be worrying about is claiming income protection through super or other avenues. But with the right guidance, it doesn’t have to be a stressful process.
While getting you the best result is our top priority, Maurice Blackburn is also committed to reducing the anxiety and confusion of an income protection claim when everything has changed and you’re worried about the future. Our expert team of income protection lawyers can help you navigate the entire process. We will guide you every step of the way and:
- Offer you advice on whether you have a valid income protection claim
- Explain the fine print in your policy in plain English
- Help you understand exactly what you’re entitled to
- Take care of tricky discussions with your insurance company, superannuation fund, doctors and any other organisations
Plus, Maurice Blackburn's income protection lawyers are experts with over 100 years of experience in Australia. We understand the importance of having someone in your corner when taking on a well-resourced insurer.
We even offer 'no win, no fee'* arrangements for income protection cases. This means that you don’t pay if we don't win. We have superannuation and income protection claims lawyers across Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide, Darwin and throughout regional Australia.
Contact us today to receive a free income protection insurance claim check and find out how we can help.
Frequently Asked Questions
Many people in Australia have income protection through their superannuation fund, employer or an industry organisation like a union. Because income protection insurance is often provided automatically through super fund or other memberships, many people do not realise they are covered. You cant rely on your insurer to notify you that you are eligible to claim.
If you’re not sure if you have income protection insurance, you can ask your super fund or union directly. Your local Maurice Blackburn team can help you find out if you’re covered as well.
Some (but not all) policies may have an offset clause. This means that your insurer may reduce your insurance payout if you have received other forms of income while you have been unable to work, such as workers compensation weekly payments, sick leave or Centrelink. There may be legal grounds to challenge an insurer’s reduction of benefits for which we can provide advice.
No, super funds have option, but are not required, to provide income protection cover. If you are covered by an income protection policy under your super fund, this is generally called a group policy and the cover is usually provided automatically without you having to answer any health questions.
If however, you take out a private policy, you usually have to answer health questions before you are covered. This can result in pre-existing exclusion clauses being added to the private policy terms which can be used to decline claims - but often with our help we can make sure you receive your full policy entitlements.
Under some, but not all, income protection insurance policies you must tell your insurer about any pre-existing health problems or other relevant information it asks for in your application. You also have to truthfully answer any questions they ask you. Otherwise your insurer might try to avoid paying out your claim - but often with our help we can make sure you receive your full policy entitlements.
It depends on the policy wording but ‘disability’ in income protection usually means you are unfit to do some or all of the duties of your usual job, or any job for which you are suited by education, training or experience.
Many insurance policies require that you:
- cease work ‘solely’ due to your injury or illness which can be a contested fact, especially where the employer formally terminated employment on some other ground such as redundancy or performance
- be under the care and treatment of a registered medical practitioner
We are experts at anticipating these issues during the claim process and overturning claim denials.
It’s best to claim as soon as possible because time limits do apply. But, you may still be able to claim a long time after you were injured or fell ill. We can help you identify whether you are still able to make a claim.
If you have income protection cover you can make a claim on it when an illness, injury, disability or any other medical reason prevents you from working, even when the medical condition is expected to improve.
Income protection insurance generally covers you for about 75% of your pre-injury or illness salary. It may also pay a superannuation top up.
The date you receive your income protection insurance payout will depend on the waiting period specified within your policy. Waiting periods in these types of claims are generally within three months.
Your dedicated income protection lawyer will tell you how long your claim may take once they know more about your unique situation and policy.
Workers compensation cover is generally only paid out to you if your injury or illness happened as a direct result of your job. Income protection insurance generally covers you for any injury or illness that prevents you from working, regardless of whether it was a result of your job or personal related circumstances.
Yes. There are strict time limits that apply to income protection insurance claims. Seeking expert legal advice as soon as possible following your injury or illness is the best way to ensure your claim is successful.