New Jersey's Temporary Disability Benefits Law Amended
No benefits shall be payable under the State Plan to any person ……
(f) for any period due to willfully and intentionally self-inflicted injury, or to injury sustained in the perpetration by the claimant of a crime of the first, second, third or fourthdegree, or for any period during which a covered individual would be disqualified for unemployment compensation benefits for gross misconduct under subsection (b) of R.S. 43:21-5.
Crimes of the fourth degree were added to the provision of the law which denies temporary disability benefits to claimants whose disabilities result from the perpetration of a crime of the first, second, third or fourth degree punishable under the New Jersey Code of Criminal Justice. It is important to remember that the disability must be related to the individual’s perpetration of a crime in order to hold the temporary disability claimant ineligible to receive benefits.
The amendment also denies benefits when the claimant is discharged from the last employer due to gross misconduct. Gross misconduct is defined as the commission of an act punishable as a crime of the first, second, third or fourth degree under the New Jersey Code of Criminal Justice. The disability does not have to be related to the crime committed. If the individual is discharged from their last employment due to the commission of a crime related to the employment, he/she would be ineligible for temporary disability benefits regardless of the type or nature of the disability.
To ensure that all issues are considered when your employees file a claim for temporary disability benefits, please remember to include the reason for separation when completing the Employer Statement on the Application for Benefits (Form DS1) or if you receive a Request for Information (Form E15) from the Division of Temporary Disability Insurance. Questions concerning the Temporary Disability Benefits Law or program can be directed to the Customer Service Section at (609) 292-7060.