Disability & DRA

Disability & DRA

  • Apply for Disability

  • Medical Claims Processor Review

  • Disability Payments Begin

  • Read Important Information

  • 30 Days
  • 30-60 Working Day Waiting Period

You should request an Application for Disability from the personnel or benefits office on your campus. Do not request the application from SURS. The application should be submitted to the State Universities Retirement System (SURS) after you and your employer have completed the sections of the application that apply to each of you respectively and your physician has completed his/her portion and attached the appropriate medical documents.

You should complete the application immediately if your disability is expected to last more than 60 days. If you are unsure of whether your disability will last 60 days or longer, you should still complete and submit an application. Your application must be on file with SURS within one calendar year after the date on which your disability occurred.

Once a completed application is received at the SURS office, the Medical Claims Processor reviews the application and medical documentation to make a determination of your eligibility for benefits.  After a decision has been made, the Medical Claims Processor will notify you in writing of the decision.

You could be asked by the SURS Medical Claims Processor to have an additional examination done by another physician. If this occurs, SURS will be responsible for the cost of this exam. You will not be asked to pay for this exam. If medically approved, your claim is then sent to the Disability Process Team where it will be reviewed and processed. Please respond immediately to any additional requests sent by SURS. The claim will be finalized upon receipt and correctness of all necessary information from you, your employer, and physician/s.

Disability payments are paid on the last working day of the month for the current month. For example, benefits due for January are paid on January 31.

There is a 60-day waiting period before you are eligible to receive your SURS disability benefit. If at the end of your 60-day waiting period, you have been paid all of your accumulated sick leave and you are still disabled, your benefit will begin to accrue on the 61st day of your disability.

For Example:

Last Day Worked:  May 31
60-Day Waiting Period:  June 1 – July 30
Date Benefits Begin:  August 16

You will receive either 50% of the monthly salary you were receiving at the time you became disabled or 50% of your average earnings for the 24 months prior to the date you became disabled, whichever is greater.

The laws governing your retirement system do not allow any payment of benefits for the first 60 days. Therefore, your payment will not be retroactive to your last day of work.

You will continue to earn service credit for retirement and will be protected for survivor insurance benefits while receiving disability benefits from SURS.

SURS will periodically require that you submit additional medical documentation to verify your continued eligibility for disability payments.

If you have questions while your application is being processed, contact SURS:

Phone: (800) 275-7877 or (217) 378-8800
Fax: (217) 378-9800
Website:  www.surs.org