How Many Times Can You Claim TPD?

29 January 2024 | Superfund Insurance

It is not uncommon for people to have multiple TPD policies. UniSuper reports that approximately 4 million Australians have more than one super account. Total and Permanent Disability (TPD) is often included in superannuation insurance by default. It stands to reason, then, that a significant portion of Aussies would have recourse to more than one TPD policy if they were to become totally and permanently disabled.

The Total and Permanent Disability benefit is usually paid as a one-time lump sum. However, if you have multiple TPD policies, you may be able to lodge multiple claims for TPD compensation.

Our team at TPD Compensation Lawyers can review your super insurance for multiple policies and advise you how to go about claiming TPD benefits. Call 03 9966 7188 today for a FREE consultation.

Why Do I Have Multiple TPD Policies?

The #1 reason people may have more than one Total and Permanent Disability insurance policy is because they change jobs and neglect to consolidate the super account from their previous employment. If you don’t provide the details of your existing super account to your new employer, a new account may have been created with the employer’s super fund of choice.

Alternatively, some people have multiple TPD policies by choice. For example, having personal superannuation cover plus a super account through an employer may be a way to diversify an investment portfolio and maximise insurance cover in certain situations.

Having more than one super account is often discouraged from a retirement planning standpoint. But, if you have a Total and Permanent Disability, having TPD cover through multiple super policies can be hugely advantageous.

Can You Claim TPD More Than Once?

As a general rule, TPD benefits are only paid one time. We’ve seen some super insurers use structured payments, but a lump sum payment is the norm. If your TPD application is approved, you will not be able to claim additional compensation on the same policy.


If you have multiple TPD policies, you can claim more than one Total and Permanent Disability benefit for the same illness or injury. You will need to prove that you meet the definition of TPD used by each insurer.

Super funds operate independently of each other. Receiving a TPD benefit from one does not usually preclude you from claiming compensation from another. But you should not assume that the process of applying for Total and Permanent Disability will be exactly the same from one policy to another.

How to Claim the Benefit from Multiple TPD Policies

It is crucial to undertake a comprehensive review of any and all TPD insurance cover before lodging a claim or claims. The language used by insurance companies is notoriously complicated and difficult to understand, so it is in your best interest to consult a specialist lawyer as soon as possible.

Meet TPD Compensation Lawyers

The exact steps of claiming TPD vary by super insurer. Generally speaking, however, the process will consist of the following steps:

1. Verifying Your Insurance Cover

For you to have a TPD entitlement, any and all superannuation insurance policies must have been active on the Date of Disablement. A knowledgeable lawyer can determine when this date is assessed by each policy and confirm that you had TPD insurance cover at that time.

2. Collecting Medical Evidence

Whether you have just one or multiple TPD policies, you need to prove that your condition satisfies the insurer’s definition of Total and Permanent Disability. You may need to show that you are unable to do the job you had before becoming disabled, you can’t do any job for which you would otherwise be capable, or you are unable to perform the activities of daily living.

A single visit to your GP won’t be enough to meet any of the criteria. The illness or injury will need to be exhaustively documented, likely through multiple medical appointments. Ultimately, your medical records need to provide compelling evidence of Total and Permanent Disability in accordance with each insurer’s definition.

3. Identifying Any Exclusions or Limitations

Though rare, some TPD insurance policies impose a time limit for making a claim. It is also important to be aware of any exceptions contained within the policy, such as pre-existing conditions or injuries arising from acts of self-harm. Another important consideration is whether any policies state that a claim can be denied if you receive a benefit from another policy.

Experienced solicitors can review each of your policies. If there are any limitations or exclusions, your lawyer can discuss the potential impact on your claim(s).

4. Satisfying the Waiting Period(s)

You can’t claim TPD the day you become disabled. All super policies have a waiting period—usually 3 to 6 months—before you can apply.

Claims made before the waiting period will be rejected. By reviewing your TPD policies, we can make sure the waiting period has elapsed before lodging the claim(s).

5. Completing Your Application(s)

When you have multiple TPD policies, a separate application will need to be submitted for each claim. A TPD lawyer can ensure that all necessary information and records are included. This may include:

  • Details of your Total and Permanent Disability
  • Two or more statements from medical professionals
  • Medical records, including lab results, imaging, etc.
  • Employment records
  • Payslips, tax returns, and other financial documents

Each insurer may have different requirements. It is of the utmost importance to read the insurance policy carefully and make sure you include all requested information and materials in your application. Better still, have a solicitor well-versed in TPD matters help you complete the application and follow the instructions for submitting it to each insurer you have cover with.

Get Help Navigating Multiple TPD Policies

If you become totally and permanently disabled, you should explore your benefit options as soon as possible. Having TPD cover with more than one superannuation policy can help you obtain additional compensation, but having specialised legal counsel is key.

TPD Compensation Lawyers represent clients throughout Victoria. Contact us for FREE today, and we will develop an effective strategy for navigating multiple TPD policies and maximising your Total and Permanent Disability entitlement.