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Can you receive disability for pregnancy?

Daniel Walker
Licensed Insurance Agent for 15 Years

UPDATED: Mar 19, 2020

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Typically you cannot get disability for a normal pregnancy and birth. However, you may be able to get disability coverage, if you have a complication from pregnancy or birth that results in other medical or mental issues.

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The following article will give you additional information on disability options during pregnancy.

What are some disability options during pregnancy?

Since your pregnancy is considered your choice by the insurance industry, disability insurance will not cover your lost wages just due to a pregnancy alone. If you work in a job that cannot be done while pregnant, disability insurance still will not cover you since they view it as your decision to become pregnant.

Your employer may have a maternity plan in place in your employee handbook that includes some paid maternity leave. This is not a requirement of your employee but an option that some employers offer. Federal law requires employers to give you the time off, but they are not required to pay you. This is not disability and should not be considered as such.

When is pregnancy considered a disability?

Having said this, there are still a few instances when disability will cover you during pregnancy.

Severe morning sickness- This is more than just nausea or vomiting. Severe morning sickness includes dehydration due to vomiting and hospitalization due to dehydration. Weight loss is a big indicator that morning sickness is becoming severe. Only your obstetrician can diagnose severe morning sickness and you do need an official diagnoses in order for disability to cover all or some of your lost wages. It may take time to process the claim, but it will be retroactive to the day the claim is filed.

Doctor ordered bed rest- This can come into play if you:

  • Are pregnant with multiples
  • Have a medical condition that could cause stress on you or the baby or
  • If you have gone into pre-term labor that has been stopped by the obstetrician through medication

There are other medical reasons that a doctor may commit you to bed rest but these are the most common reasons. As with severe morning sickness, you must have a letter for your doctor that explains why you need bed rest and the duration for which bed rest is needed.

Complications after giving birth- This can be from a vaginal birth or a cesarean section. Though disability won’t cover direct results of the birth such as infected stitches or pain from vaginal tearing, it will cover consequential medical events.

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For example, if you get an infection from stitches that gets into your blood stream and requires hospitalization, your disability will go into effect for the hospitalization. So there has to be an additional medical need on top of the complication of giving birth.

It is important to note that disability is only an option in these situation if you are working when you get pregnant. If you are not working or are already a stay at home mom, you can’t get disability coverage. It is only for loss of income that you had prior to the pregnancy.

How can I find a good maternity disability policy?

If you are looking for a good maternity disability policy, just to be prepared when something arises, you should begin by deciding what coverage you want. You may be aware of medical problems you already have, family history, or you may have already gone through a pregnancy with problems. Take these concerns into consideration when looking for a policy. If you know you will lose some time at work or are just worried about the possibility, be prepared with a maternity disability policy before you get pregnant.

You can look for a policy online using the online comparison tool provided here. You can look for a straight forward disability policy or for a specialized maternity disability policy. Either way, comparing prices and policy options is the best way to save money and find a plan that you are happy with and fits your budget. The online comparison tool allows you to enter your information one time and then receive rates and quotes from top companies all in one spot.

Start by typing your zip code into the free rate tool and then compare disability quotes today!

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