Academic Executive

The Income Replacement Plan (IRP) for Academic Executive is an employee-funded plan that provides you with a monthly income if you are unable to work for 26 weeks or more due to illness or injury.

This information is effective January 1, 2012.  If you were disabled prior to January 1, 2012, please see information in the old Academic Executive Sun Life Handbook.

Eligibility for Coverage
Contributions
When Coverage Begins
When Coverage Ends
Eligibility for Benefit Payments
Elimination Period
How to apply
Benefit Payments
Monthly Benefit Payment Amounts
Reductions and Limitations
Cost of Living Adjustment
Other Group Benefits
Rehabilitation Assistance
Returning to Work
Recurrent Illness
Your Responsibility During Total Disability
Termination of Benefit Payments

Further information on applying for benefits from the Income Replacement Plan (including application forms) is available by calling the Disability Benefits Claims Assistant at 604-822-8696.

Important note: This is only a brief overview of the plan. The Sun Life booklet with complete updated plan details will be posted shortly.

Eligibility for Coverage

All continuing Academic Executives will automatically be enrolled in the Income Replacement Plan on their date of hire, if you are hired prior to your Normal Retirement Date (the June 30th or Dec. 31st coincident with or next following the date you turn age 65).

Contributions

The Income Replacement Plan is an employee-paid benefit, and any benefits received are non-taxable income for those on the plan.

Effective January 1, 2014, the contribution rate is 0.774% of a member’s monthly salary, and is automatically deducted from your paycheque once you meet the eligibility criteria.

When Coverage Begins

If eligible, your coverage begins on the date:

  • You become eligible if the University has received your enrolment on or before such date;
  • The University receives your enrolment information, if the information is received by the University within 31 days of your becoming eligible;
  • The Plan Administrator approves your proof of good health, if your application is received by the University later than 31 days following your eligibility for coverage. The cost of providing proof of good health is your responsibility.

If you are not actively working on the date coverage would normally begin, the coverage will not begin until you return to active work with the University.

If you go on leave and elect not to continue IRP contributions, your return-to-work date then becomes your new date of hire for the purpose of reinstatement of IRP coverage and this date will also be used for the purpose of applying the pre-existing condition exclusion.

When Coverage Ends

Coverage under the plan will end on the earlier of the following dates:

  • Your employment ends;
  • The plan terminates;
  • The date you reach your Normal Retirement Date (June 30th or Dec. 31st coincident with or next following the date you turn age 65) less six months;
  • You enter the armed forces of any country on a full-time basis;
  • You begin a period of layoff;
  • You are no longer working unless you are on a paid leave of absence or an unpaid leave of absence and elected to continue to pay premiums and remain covered;
  • You no longer satisfy the eligibility requirements.

Eligibility for Benefit Payments

To receive benefits, you will be considered eligible if you are totally or partially disabled.

You will be considered totally disabled if during the elimination period and the following 24-month period you are suffering from an impairment or concurrent impairments, that prevent you from performing a combination of the duties regularly performed by you for the University before the date incurred where these duties regularly required at least eighty percent (80%) of your pre-disability weekly working time to complete. This also referred to as the own occupation period.

Afterwards, you will be considered totally disabled if your impairment or concurrent impairments prevent you from being gainfully employed. Gainfully employedmeans employment in an occupation for which you have, or may obtain, at least the minimum qualifications by reason of education, training or experience and which provides a monthly income of at least 80% of your indexed pre-disability net monthly earnings or 80% of the greater of your indexed pre-disability net monthly earnings or your full pay if you are in an accomodated work program. This is also referred to as the alternate occupation period.

If you become disabled in accordance with the provision of the plan and you are able to perform only a portion of your normal job duties, you will be eligible to apply for partial disability benefits.

When applying for IRP benefits, you will be asked for proof that you became totally or partially disabled while covered and that you have been following appropriate treatment for the disabling impairment since the onset of the impairment.

IRP benefits are payable after you have been totally or partially disabled for an uninterrupted period of 26 weeks (also known as the elimination period).

Elimination Period

The elimination period is the period which must be completed before disability benefits become payable. The elimination period is 26 continuous weeks commencing from the date your total or partial impairment prevented you from working.

However, if your impairment or concurrent impairments result in a period of disability that is broken by one or more periods, none of which is longer than 30 days, the periods of disability can be accumulated to attain the 26 weeks, provided they are accumulated in one 365-day period.

Where possible, the University will work with you during the elimination period to develop a preliminary program setting out your physical, mental or psychological work restrictions and the specific restricted or accomodated work duties that you can perform during this period (also known as early accomodated return to work program).

How to apply

During your third month of absence from work, we encourage you to apply for benefits from the Income Replacement Plan. Further information on applying for benefits (including application forms) is available by contacting the Disability Benefits Claims Assistant at (604) 822-8696.

It’s important that the information in your application is complete to avoid any delays in setting up your IRP payments. From time to time, the Plan Administrator will request further information about the applicant, which can take time to process.

Note: you must file your IRP claim no later than six months after the elimination period (also six months), or you will not be eligible for benefits under the Income Replacement Plan.

Benefits Payments

Once you have applied, your first IRP benefit payment is made on the first month after your elimination period expires, or as soon as possible after this time.

If you become totally or partially disabled during an approved leave and your coverage continues during this time, you will be eligible for benefit payments on the later of:

  • The end of the elimination period;
  • The date the Plan Administrator receives proof of claim;
  • The date you are scheduled to return to a normal work week at the University.

Monthly Benefit Payment Amount

The monthly benefit is calculated as follows:

67% of the first $5,500 of your basic monthly salary, plus

43% of your monthly salary in excess of the first $5,500.

For example, based on a monthly salary of $7,000:

67% of $5,500: $3,685

43% of $1,500: $645

Total monthly benefit: $4,330

The maximum monthly benefit is $30,000 and net monthly payments from IRP are not subject to Income Tax. (See Reductions and Limitations for information on net payments)

Changes in the amount of coverage or benefits may occur as a result of an employment status change or a change to the benefit. Any resulting changes take effect on the date of the change in status or benefits. If you are not actively working when the change occurs, the increase does not take effect until you return to active work.

Please refer to Other Group Benefits for more information on benefit coverage while you are receiving IRP benefits.

Reductions and Limitations

If you are entitled to receive benefits from other sources as a result of your disability, the amount of benefit paid under this plan may be reduced by addtional sources of income, such as the following:

  • CPP or QPP disability benefits (excluding dependents’ benefits);
  • Disability payments from any other government plan (excluding Employment Insurance and Department of Veterans’ Affairs benefits);
  • Disability benefits from any other group, association or franchise plan (this does not include private plans paid for by individual members);
  • Worker’s Compensation benefits;
  • Income replacement benefits from any automobile insurance plan or policy;
  • Income from other group benefit, pension or retirement plans provided by any employer when benefits are based on UBC earnings and as a result of UBC employment, including any coverage resulting from your membership in an association of any kind;
  • Payments or earnings from any employer for any work for wage or profit as approved by the Plan Administrator, except for vacation pay and payments from the Living Benefits Loan Program;
  • Any past or future wage loss recovered through a legally enforceable cause of action against some other person or corporation in accordance with provisions under Third Party Liability.

If you are eligible for any of the benefits from other sources listed above and you do not apply for these benefits, the Plan Administrator will still consider them part of your income and will estimate the amount you would be eligible for, had you applied.

If you are approved for partially disability benefits on a permanent basis, the reductions and limitations mentioned above will not apply.

IRP benefits are not paid for disabilities resulting from:

  • Intentionally self-inflicted injuries or attempted suicide, while sane or insane;
  • The hostile action of any armed forces, insurrection or participation in a riot or civil commotion;
  • Participation in a criminal offense;
  • Illnesses that are sustained while you are working for wage or profit, outside of your duties and responsibilities with the University;
  • A total or partial disability which results directly or indirectly from an impairment which existed on or before the date your coverage began under this plan (pre-existing condition); however this limitation will not apply if:
    • You have been covered by this plan for at least 13 weeks during which you have been actively working continuously (up to 3 days absence does not count) and you have not been treated by a doctor, or any medical personnel under the direction of a doctor for the condition, or;
    • You became totally or partially disabled more than 12 months after your coverage began under this plan.
  • The health-related portion of a maternity or parental leave where benefits are payable under UBC’s Supplemental Employment Plan (SEB).

You must reside in Canada to receive IRP benefit payments.

Cost of Living Adjustment

A cost of living adjustment will be applied to your monthly benefit each Jan. 1st. The adjustment will be based on the percentage increase to the Canadian Consumer Price Index to a maximum of 6%.

Other Group Benefits

Making a claim under the Income Replacement Plan doesn’t mean that your other group benefits with UBC end. If you were enrolled in the following benefits on the date prior to being accepted on IRP claim (the start date of receiving IRP benefits), the following benefits will be maintained by the University per the terms of the plan provided your employment status with the University is not terminated:

  • Basic Medical (MSP)
  • Extended Health
  • Dental
  • Basic Group Life Insurance
  • Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP)

The IRP premiums normally payable by you will be suspended while you are receiving monthly IRP benefits.

With proof of total disability, other benefits premiums, such as Optional Life/Accidental Death and Dismemberment and Spousal Optional Life/Accidental Death and Dismemberment Insurance may be waived by Sun Life Canada, the University’s life insurance carrier. If you are covered for these benefits, UBC’s Disability Benefits Claims Assistant will apply for waiver of premiums on your behalf at the time your IRP claim is submitted.

While you are in receipt of IRP benefits, the Plan will make monthly contributions to your Faculty Pension Plan equal to 15% of your gross pre-disability monthly earnings.

If you are participating in a rehabilitation program or partially disabled, please see below:

If you are participating in a Rehabilitation Program (Gradual Return to Work from Total Disability)

  • If you are receiving Income Replacement Plan (IRP) benefits and returning to work on a gradual basis, your benefits will revert back to the normal cost-sharing arrangement after 3 months of rehabilitative employment (regardless of FTE worked).
  • Normal cost-sharing means that you will be responsible to pay the employee share of any benefits costs (contributions/premiums) that you paid prior to going on disability claim, with the exception of the IRP premiums and any Optional Life/Accidental Death and Dismemberment and Spousal Optional Life/Accidental Death and Dismemberment Insurance premiums waived by Sun Life.
  • Any Faculty Pension Plan contributions will be pro-rated on your rehab UBC earnings. The 15% contribution that the Plan makes to your Faculty Pension Plan while you were on full disability will be adjusted if you are participating in an approved rehabilitation program.

For more information on the cost of benefits, click here.

If you are participating in a Partial Disability Program

  • While you are participating in a partial disability program with permanent accommodation and receiving Income Replacement Plan (IRP) benefits, your benefits will revert back to the normal cost-sharing arrangement upon approval of your permanent partially disabled status (regardless of FTE worked).
  • Normal cost-sharing means that you will be responsible to pay the employee share of any benefits costs (contributions/premiums) that you paid prior to going on disability claim, with the exception of the IRP premiums and any Optional Life/Accidental Death and Dismemberment and Spousal Optional Life/Accidental Death and Dismemberment Insurance premiums waived by Sun Life.
  • Any Faculty Pension Plan contributions will be pro-rated on your partial UBC earnings. The 15% contribution that the Plan makes to your Faculty Pension Plan while you were on full disability will be adjusted if you are participating in an approved partial disability program with permanent accommodation.

For more information on the cost of benefits, click here.

Rehabilitation Assistance

You may be required to participate in a rehabilitation program approved by the Plan Administrator.

It may include the involvement of a rehabilitation team (consisting of a rehabilitation specialist, your physician, your department and UBC’s Return to Work coordinators), part-time work, working in another occupation or vocational training to help you become capable of normal work week employment.

During your rehabilitation program, you will continue to be eligible for IRP benefits. However, the IRP benefits will be reduced by 50% of the income you receive under the rehabilitation program. During any month, the total income you receive from all sources cannot be more than the maximum percentage of your net adjusted pre-disability monthly earnings if you enter a rehabilitation program after the 24-month period following the elimination period, or the maximum percentage of your indexed pre-disability net monthly earnings in all other cases. In cases where the total income exceeds this limit, the IRP benefits will be reduced by the excess.

Returning to Work

After a disabling accident or illness, many people return to work gradually. The Return to Work Program can help to coordinate this.

If you are participating in a rehabilitation program, the University will work with you to establish an accomodated work program to establish your physical, mental or psychological work restrictions and the specific restricted or accomodated work duties that you are expected to perform during that period. An accomodated work program shall also confirm which duties or combination of duties regularly performed by you for the University before the disability was incurred can be performed by you during the period and the percentage of your pre-disability weekly working time that these duties or combination of duties regularly required before the disability was incurred. An accomodated work program shall be reviewed and updated by the University no less regularly than monthly.

While you are gradually increasing your work activity, and being paid for the time you work, your IRP benefit will be replaced with a rehabilitative subsidy. Your net income will increase as the amount you work also increases. The combination of your rehabilitative subsidy plus the net salary will not be greater than your pre-disability net earnings as of the time your total or partial disability began.

Recurrent Illness

After you have been on an IRP claim, you will be instated immediately, if:

  • You are not able to continue working due to the same or related causes of the original disability, or
  • The recurrent disability occurs during the first three months of your return to work.

If you are disabled because of accident or illness not related to your first disability claim, this is treated as a new claim, and will be subject to the usual 26 week elimination period, and eligibility criteria.

Your Responsibility during Total Disability

During any period of total disability you must make reasonable efforts to:

  • Recover from the disability, including participating in any reasonable treatment or rehabilitation program and accepting any offer of reasonable modified duties from the University;
  • Return to your own occupation during the own occupation period (first 24 months following the elimination period);
  • Obtain training in order to qualify for another occupation if it comes apparent that you will not be returning to your own occupation during the 24 month period following the elimination period;
  • Try to obtain work in another occupation after the 24 month period following the elimination period, and
  • Obtain benefits that may be available from other sources.

If you fail to do any of the above, the Plan Administrator may withold or discontinue benefits.

Termination of Benefit Payments

As long as you continue to meet the eligibility requirements, you will continue to receive IRP benefit payments up to the following date, whichever occurs first:

  • Date you are no longer totally or partially disabled;
  • End of the maximum benefit period;
  • The date you reach your Normal Retirement Date (June 30th or Dec. 31st coincident with or next following the date you turn age 65);
  • Last day of the month in which you retire with a pension or are eligible to retire with a full pension or a full pension equivalent;
  • Date you are incarcerated in a prison or mental institution by authority of a criminal court;
  • The date you die. In such event, the last payment will include the date of death.

Benefit payments may cease before the dates mentioned above, if:

  • You are not receiving appropriate treatment;
  • Further proof of your disability is requested but is not received within 90 days of the request;
  • You fail to take a medical examination requested by the Plan Administrator;
  • You do any work for wage or profit except as approved by the Plan Administrator;
  • You are not participating in an approved rehabilitation program, if required by the Plan Administrator;
  • You refuse to provide the Plan Administrator with requested information if you have a claim against a Third Party for loss of income which could have been earned while disability benefits are paid or payable under this plan;
  • You are serving a prison sentence or are confined in a similar institution;
  • You are absent from Canada longer than four months due to any reason, unless the Plan Administrator agrees in writing in advance to pay benefits during this period.

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