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nj: from std to new job

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  • nj: from std to new job

    I work for a non-profit organization based in dc but work in the nj satellite office. Just wondering. Am on std for a cancer operation and have a new job prospect. Can I go back to work at the non-profit at the end of my std and give notice on my first day back or will there be repercussions (such as needing to pay back the std or some other penalties)?

    Question number 2, if I I have to worry about not getting std with my new employer, if I need it again, say, sometime next year?
    Thank you.

  • #2
    I've been answering questions on internet boards for a total of seven or eight years now, and until just recently no one has ever asked if they would have to pay back std benefits. Now every time I turn around someone is asking that. What's up? Is there something going around the internet suggesting that? Serious question.

    No, you will not need to pay back std benefits. If you have been on your employer's health insurance, you MIGHT have to pay them back for the premiums they have paid on your behalf while you have been out.

    If you were in almost any other state, the answer to your second question would depend on the benefit package offered by your employer. In 45 out of 50 states, whether or not std benefits are offered is entirely up to the employer. You are in one of the few states with a state-mandated disability program. So no, if you were to need std benefits again there would be no problem getting them.
    The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.


    • #3
      trend to question std

      Dear cbg,

      Thanks so much, you have been a great help. It is hard to be a patient needing to heal and recuperate and also be an amateur sleuth/professional worrier when it comes to labor law about one's own job.

      You are in a better position than I to see a trend in the questions you see. I came across the the topic of wondering if I might need to pay back std benefits through members of cancer patient organizations. I was concerned about going from one job to another and perhaps facing the difficulty of getting health insurance. Members of various organizations helpfully explained HIPAA, the health insurance issues about pre-existing conditions and what I should look out for.

      But: they pointed out that while health insurance questions are regulated and often pretty clear cut, short-term disability and life insurance issues are very different and could be problematic for someone who had just had an operation and was switching jobs. That led me to your great and helpful forum.

      Thank you again.


      • #4
        Thank you for that information. When suddenly a new question begins appearing over and over, it's helpful to understand where the question originated. You've been a big help.
        The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.


        • #5
          Source of the Repayment Question

          Hi, I have been reading a posts on several websites, & some mention that if you resign while out on FMLA, you may have to repay the benefits. And since FMLA and STD are sometimes used concurrently, and sometimes consecutively by employees, it breeds confusion for people who are only out on short Medical Disability, & not using FMLA at all.

          And since my company has been generously paying me my Full Salary while I was out on Medical Disability... if I did have to repay everything, it would be about $14K! So while I think the chances are low, the severity of the possible consequence means I am making **** sure that I'll be safe.

          Also, I thought I was out on STD, but I've read on this site, that STD is just how I get paid for whatever leave I'm on... STD is not an actual type of leave itself. So now I really have to check if I'll need to repay the benefits, because apparently I, and many of the other posters, don't even know what type of Leave we are on. Heh.


          • #6
            Did you by any chance notice that this thread is from five years ago? That was the "trendy" question then - it is not now.

            For what I hope is the final time, no one will ever have to pay back STD benefits. Over 30 years administrating group benefits, by now twelve or thirteen years answering questions on message boards, and NEVER have I seen a single thing to suggest that this has ever happened. Not a single poster in all that time has ever posted that they HAVE been required to pay back STD benefits; not a single policy I have ever seen or heard of has had that provision. STD benefits do not need to be repaid. End of story. STD benefits are wage replacement - have you ever heard of of an employer being able to legally recall wages after the fact? I didn't think so.

            Health insurance benefits are a different story. The FMLA statute specifically gives an employer permission to require health insurance premiums to be paid back if the employee VOLUNTARILY does not return from their medical leave. Note the upper case - an employee who is medically unable to return CANNOT be required to repay health insurance premiums, though the employer is not legally obligated to continue such benefits once FMLA has expired. (The employee would be eligible for COBRA.) The law is silent on the issue with regards to non-FMLA leave (although I have yet to hear about an employer who made this requirement for non-FMLA leave. There may be some. If so, I've never worked for them and none of their employees have ever posted on any board where I respond). But health insurance benefits are not wage replacement. Different laws apply.

            Now, can we finally put this issue to rest?
            The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.