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Resigning my position

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What is the name of your state? Connecticut


I am new to this site and am very grateful I found it. I only hope I have picked the correct forum for my issue.

I having been trying to get help answering these questions and have left several messages for attorneys in my area, but NO ONE has called me back.

I have worked for the same company for 19 years. I have MAJOR spinal problems, including having had four failed back surgeries in the past 16 years, and am now diagnosed as having "failed back syndrome." I had NEVER had to use my short term disability benefits other than on one occasion during a surgical leave. That being said, I started to develop worsening problems in June of this past year. The pain became intolerable and my physician took me out work in September and I have yet to return to work. I am currently receiving short term disability (through a group plan my employer offers). This goes for six months and then, IF I have not or cannot return to work after that, I will move into long term disability.

In the interim, my husband has accepted a position in North Carolina and we will be moving next month. Naturally, I was planning on resigning my position and re-locating with him. I had a friend advise me to NOT resign my position or I would lose my benefits (short term and long term disability), benefits that I have paid into for a long time and, given the prognosis of my condition, might be the only protection I will have for my financial future.

I am really struggling with this. There is no question as to the validity of my disability - that's not the issue. The issue is - what am I allowed to do with my personal life while on disablity? If I do not resign and move to North Carolina, can the insurance company and/or employer terminate me? I am under an approved FMLA and know they can terminate me anyway after 6 months, when and IF I move into long term disability coverage. My coworkers are now upset with the prospect that even though I am moving next month, given that I might not vacate my position for another four months (when the FMLA is over), they will be short-staffed in the office for a longer time.

Any thoughts, ideas or recommendations out there??? Please help. I should be resigning in the next few days in order to provide an "adequate" notice to my employer.



P.S. Sorry for the long post!!! :eek:
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Senior Member
Your best response would be talk with your disability provider and see what, if any, repercussions may occur if you were to resign and relocate. Then, get their response in writing before making any decision.


I'm a Northern Girl
Although it would be impossible to say for certain without reading the SPD of your disability plans, there is a strong likelihood that your friend is mistaken. For some reason, a number of people believe that disability benefits are tied to employment status. In the very large majority of cases, that is not true. What matters is whether or not you were eligible for benefits at the time you became disabled. Having approved you for benefits, the insurance carriers generally (there are occasional exceptions, but they are rare) do not abandon you if your employment ends. Since an employer can terminate your employment legally after 12 weeks (not six months - that may be company policy but under Federal law they only have to hold your job 12 weeks; your state has a slight extension but it still doesn't come to six months) an employee would never get to long term benefits if this were not the case.

I strongly advise that you check with your HR department and find out what they have to say.


I have read the two replies and I just wanted to say thanks to you both! I appreciate the advice and direction you have given to me and I am off to call my HR Department.

Thanks again! :)


CBG - I got information from HR ... please help with a sanity check....

Hi CBG -

I called my HR Department and they were "pretty sure" if I voluntarily resigned my position, I would lose all my disability benefits, even if I was under an active claim at the time of resignation. She said that I would have to stay up here for the 16 weeks of FMLA (leaving me up here for another 6 weeks after my husband has moved with no place to live), let them terminate me at that point, and I could then continue with my disability benefits (the remainder of the short term and then move into the long term, if necessary).

When you mentioned that disability benefits are usually not tied to employment status, does it matter if the employee voluntarily resigns or is company terminated?

I know this might sound silly, but I have always been an extremely respected employee at this company with outstanding annual reviews and I absolutely HATE the thought of being terminated and having to report this on future applications, etc. The HR Dept. said they did mail me the SPD for my policy and I hope to have that in the next couple of days. I don't really know what this document is, but if benefits continuing following voluntary resignation versus employer termination is not outlined in it, do I challenge this further?




I'm a Northern Girl
In my experience, it shouldn't make any difference whether you resign or ar terminated. However, I have not read your SPD. I can't swear that your particular plan doesn't hold that restriction. Your HR person shouldn't assume on "pretty sure", though; if she doesn't know for absolutely certain, she should call the carrier or the broker and ask. Make sure she does it; if she won't, you do it. I would want to see the words, "Benefits will end if the employee resigns" or something similar in the SPD before I would accept that as final. (Given the circumstances, I should think the carrier would be willing to look at the whole picture. Not my call to make though - it depends on how the contract is written.)

BTW, a termination is not the kiss of death many believe, especially since in your case it would be for medical reasons. You could easily explain to a prospective employer that you had an injury/illness that kept you out of work beyond the length of time that your employer could hold your job open and that things were further complicated by your husband's moving out of state. Speaking as an employer, I can tell you that I would have absolutely no qualms about an applicant who told me that. It's not at all as if you were having to explain about being fired for misconduct. In the current market, many, many highly respected employees are being terminated (which is only an HR word for the end of employment - believe it or not to HR people termination is not the same as being fired) for reasons beyond their control. A good employer understands that.

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