Policy Statement and Reason

This benefit is administered by The Standard, Emerson’s vendor for Long-Term Disability. Following six (6) months of disability, employees may be eligible to receive Long-Term Disability (LTD) in accordance with this policy, unless otherwise stipulated by applicable collective bargaining agreement. The retirement contribution is continued for those employees enrolled in the Matching Retirement plan.

This policy plan highlight is a summary provided to help you understand your insurance coverage from The Standard. Please refer to your certificate booklet for your complete plan description. If the terms of this plan highlight summary or your certificate differ from your policy, the plan document will govern.

Policy Guidelines


You are eligible for LTD coverage if you are:

  • an active administration and full or part-time support staff regularly working a minimum of 20 hours a week;
  • a FT Emerson College Chapter of the American Association of University Professors (ECCAAUP) bargaining unit member, (including those members taking part in the phased separation plan and teaching at least three (3) courses per academic year);
  • a Chair or an FT faculty on “returning” term contracts in active employment working at least 20 hours per week.

There are two classes of eligibility:

  • Class 1:   President, Vice Presidents, Associate Vice Presidents, and Academic Deans.
  • Class 2:   All Other Members

Eligibility Waiting Period

You are eligible for benefits on the first day following three (3) months of continuous active service.

Benefit Specifics

Premium Contributions: The cost of this insurance is paid for by Emerson College

Benefit Amount

  • Class 1 LTD Benefit: 60% of your monthly earnings to a monthly maximum of $15,000
  • Class 2 LTD Benefit: 60% of your monthly earnings to a monthly maximum of $7,500
  • Monthly MAPB Benefit: 12% (funded toward a disabled employee’s 403(b) retirement plan

Your disability benefit may be reduced by deductible sources of income and any earnings you have while disabled. Deductible sources of income may include amounts you receive or are entitled to receive under:

  • workers compensation or similar occupational benefit laws
  • state compulsory benefit laws
  • salary continuation or sick leave plans
  • other group or association disability programs or insurance
  • amounts you or your family receive or are entitled to receive from Social Security, or similar governmental programs

Evidence of Insurability

Evidence of Insurability is not required for this coverage.

Benefit Waiting Period

The Benefit Waiting Period is the period you must be continuously disabled before LTD benefits become payable. During your Benefit Waiting Period, you will be considered disabled if you are unable to perform with reasonable continuity the Material Duties (see: Definitions) of your Own Occupation (see: Definitions), and you are under the regular care of a physician. LTD benefits would begin after 180 days of disability.

Disability Definition  

During the Benefit Waiting Period and the Own Occupation Period (see: Definitions) you are required to be Disabled only from your Own Occupation (see: Definitions),

Disability from Own Occupation

You are Disabled from your Own Occupation (see: Definitions) if, as a result of Physical Disease (Injury, Pregnancy or Mental Disorder:

  • You are unable to perform with reasonable continuity the Material Duties of your Own Occupation (see: Definitions); and
  • You suffer a loss of at least 20% in your Indexed Pre-disability Earnings (see: Definitions) when working in your Own Occupation (see: Definitions)  

Maximum Benefit Duration

Your duration of benefits is based on your age when the disability occurs. Your LTD benefits are payable for the period during which you continue to meet the definition of disability. If your disability occurs before age 60, benefits will be payable until age 65. If your disability occurs at or after age 60, benefits would be paid according to a benefit duration schedule. Contact the Benefits Department at 617-824-8124 for additional details.

Employee Assistance Program

The Standard has partnered with Horizon Health Employee Assistance Program Services (EAP) to provide you with a comprehensive resource for a wide range of personal and work-related issues. The service is available to you and your family members twenty-four hours a day, 365 days a year, and provides resources to help employees find solutions to everyday issues.

Services include:

  • toll-free phone access to masters-level consultants
  • up to three face-to-face sessions to help with a more serious issue
  • unlimited online resources

There is no additional charge for utilizing the program. Participation is confidential and strictly voluntary, and employees do not have to have filed a disability claim or be receiving benefits to use the program.

Emerson employees may also access an EAP through E4 Health Systems

Rehabilitation Plan

While you are disabled you may qualify to participate in a Rehabilitation Plan. Rehabilitation Plan means a written plan, program or course of vocational training or education that is intended to prepare you to return to work. An approved Rehabilitation Plan may include our payment or some or all of the expenses you incur in connection with the plan, including:

  • Training and education expenses
  • Family care expenses
  • Job-related expenses
  • Job search expenses

Survivor Benefit

If you die while LTD Benefits are payable, and on the date you die you have been continuously disabled for at least 180 days, we will pay a Survivors Benefit.

The Survivors Benefit is a lump sum equal to 6 times your LTD Benefit. The Survivor Benefit will be paid to one of the following:

  • Your Spouse
  • Your unmarried children under the age of 25
  • Any person providing the care and support of any person listed above

Pre-existing Condition Exclusion

Pre-existing condition means a mental or physical condition whether or not diagnosed or misdiagnosed for which you have received medical treatment, consultation, care or services including diagnostic measures, or took prescribed drugs or medicines in the three (3) months just prior to your effective date of coverage.

You are not covered for any Disability caused or contributed to by a Pre-existing Condition or medical or surgical treatment of a Pre-existing Condition unless on the date you become Disabled you have been continuously insured under the Group Policy for 12 months and have been actively at work for at least one full day after the end of that 12 months.

Other Information


Indexed Pre-disability Earnings: your monthly rate of earnings from your Employer, including:

  • 1. Contributions you make through a salary reduction agreement with your Employer to:
    • a. An Internal Revenue Code (IRC) Section 401(k), 403(b), 408(k), 408(p), or 457 deferred compensation arrangement; or
    • b. An executive nonqualified deferred compensation arrangement.
  • 2. Amounts contributed to your fringe benefits according to a salary reduction agreement under an IRC Section 125 plan.

Pre-disability Earnings does not include:

  1. Bonuses
  2. Commissions
  3. Overtime pay
  4. Shift differential pay
  5. Stock options or stock bonuses
  6. our Employer's contributions on your behalf to any deferred compensation arrangement or pension plan
  7. Any other extra compensation

Material Duties: the essential tasks, functions and operations, and the skills, abilities, knowledge, training, and experience, generally required by employers from those engaged in a particular occupation that cannot be reasonably modified or omitted.

Own Occupation: any employment, business, trade, profession, calling or vocation that involves Material Duties of the same general character as the occupation you are regularly performing for your Employer when Disability begins. In determining your Own Occupation, we are not limited to looking at the way you perform your job for your Employer, but we may also look at the way the occupation is generally performed in the national economy. If your Own Occupation involves the rendering of professional services and you are required to have a professional or occupational license in order to work, your Own Occupation is as broad as the scope of your license.

Own Occupation Period: from the end of the Benefit Waiting Period to the End of the Maximum Benefit Period.

Related Policies

Key Offices to Contact 

Please contact the Leave of Absence Administrator (Human Resources) for further information regarding this policy and its implementation.  

Links to Procedures or Forms

Please contact the Leave of Absence Administrator (Human Resources) for assistance.

The contents of this policy are informational only and are not conditions of employment.  This policy does not create any contractual obligations or alter the at-will employment of the College’s at-will employees. Emerson College reserves the right to modify, revoke, suspend, terminate, or change any and all policies and procedures at any time, with or without notice, as consistent with state and federal law.

Policy effective: May 2019