Disability insurance is a type of insurance designed to cover certain expenses when a person becomes chronically (though usually not permanently) disabled and unable to work, usually through some work-related injury.

The federal government and many state governments provide some disability insurance for injured or ill workers.

5 states (California, Hawaii, New York, Rhode Island, and New Jersey) have mandatory disability insurance. In California, this employee disability insurance is covered by a tax deducted from employees’ pay. It covers physical disabilities, and paid family leave, which allows an employee to take time off for maternity or paternity, and to care for a seriously ill family member. This program’s benefits usually equal 55% of the worker’s pay, up to a certain maximum number.

If an employer in California, Hawaii, New York, Rhode Island, or New Jersey fails to carry disability insurance for their employees, they may face a lawsuit.