Short Term Disability Insurance

Help replace a portion of your income when you're unable to work

If you are unable to work for a few weeks due to a covered injury, illness or even childbirth, Unum Short Term Disability Insurance can provide an ongoing benefit to help keep your finances stable.

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Short Term Disability can pay up to 60% of your income

Get a helping hand while you recover

Even small injuries can interfere with your ability to work. For many people, unplanned time away from work can make it difficult to manage household costs.

When you're recovering from a covered injury, illness or childbirth, the last thing you need is more stress. Short Term Disability Insurance can help you stay on top of medical costs, household bills and day-to-day expenses by replacing a portion of your normal income. The ongoing payments are made directly to you, so you can use them however you need.

The top five reasons our customers use this benefit:1

  • Maternity leave
  • Injuries, excluding back
  • Joint disorders
  • Back disorders
  • Digestive disorders

Short Term Disability Insurance is here to help with your income, so you can focus on getting better. See your HR representative for more information.

Hear Renee's story

Michelle and her two children on their way to soccer practice

Income protection kept Michelle in the game

Michelle was showing her nephew how to block a kick when she took an unexpected fall and broke her ankle. She needed minor surgery and a cast, which kept her away from work for several weeks. Michelle's Short Term Disability Insurance paid her a portion of her lost income, so she could manage expenses while she was unable to work.

How Michelle's plan paid off:

Though Michelle was unable to work, her Short Term Disability Insurance paid her 60% of her income.

  • Annual salary: $36,140
  • Gross weekly earnings: $695
  • Weekly benefit: $417

She used the money to pay for:

  • Rent
  • Groceries
  • Car payments
  • Cell phone bills

For illustrative purposes only. Coverage plans may vary. Depending on who pays for this coverage, the benefit may be taxable.

Commonly asked questions about Short Term Disability

How do I calculate how much Disability Insurance I may need?
In general, it's best to have enough disability coverage to replace 60% of your after-tax income. However, this number can vary depending on a number of factors, such as recurrent debt payments and monthly living expenses.
After filing a claim, how long does it take for a decision to be made?

Unum will make the initial decision on a Short Term Disability Insurance claim within five business days after receipt of a complete claim which includes:

  • a completed Employee Statement form
  • a completed Employer's Statement form
  • a completed Attending Physician's Statement form, and
  • a signed medical authorization form.

Each claim is unique, and Unum may request additional supporting medical records to make a decision on a claim. Learn more about filing a claim here. You may also access claim information on your Apple or Andriod device using the Unum Customer App.

How will Unum determine if I am eligible for benefits?

First, we will review medical information to determine if you meet the definition of disability as it is defined in your policy. Once we establish that you meet the definition of disability, then to be eligible for benefits, you:

  • must continue to meet the definition of disability during the elimination period
  • may also be required to have a certain percentage of earnings lost due to disability

We may ask you to provide updated medical information to verify your disability and continued eligibility for benefits beyond the initial approval of your claim.

How long can I receive Short Term Disability Insurance benefit payments?
The length of time you can receive benefits depends on your policy's Maximum Benefit Period, which is determined by your employer. Once the elimination period (the number of days that must elapse before you're eligible for benefit payments) is satisfied and you continue to meet the definition of disability, your benefits can extend through the Maximum Benefit Period.
When will I receive my benefit payments?
Short Term Disability Insurance benefit payments are generally made on a weekly basis.
How much will I receive?
The amount of your benefit is dependent on your pre-disability earnings and the benefit percentage allowed in the policy. If the policy includes an incremental benefit, the benefit amount is the amount that you purchased.
How will my benefit payments be sent to me?
Payments will be mailed to you as a check. However, you can choose to have the benefit payments electronically deposited in your bank account by filling out an electronic transfer form in your Unum account.
How does Unum handle maternity benefits?

For a delivery with no complications, pregnancy claims are approved under Short Term Disability for a period of six weeks. Your employer may choose to provide an alternative eight-week benefit for Cesarean deliveries.

The six-week and eight-week periods include the elimination period. For example, if the elimination period is seven days, then a normal delivery is paid five weeks of benefits.

Disabilities due to complications of pregnancy will be covered the same as any other covered sickness.

Can I keep my Disability Insurance if I leave my job?
In some cases, yes. See your HR representative for details.

Your employment and returning to work

I'm ready to return to work. What do I do next?

When you are ready to return to work, please contact your claims specialist, who will work with you on your return-to-work plan.

What if I return to work and then have to go back out of work again for my disability?

Most plans allow for recurrent disability. If an employee becomes disabled again due to the same condition within a specified number of days, the recurrent provision allows continued disability payments under the original claim.

The number of days for the recurrent provision is stated in the policy.

If an employee becomes disabled after the number of days in the recurrent provision, or due to a new medical condition, a new claim would need to be filed.

Can I work part-time and still receive benefits?

Depending on the definition of disability as defined in the policy, an employee may be able to receive benefits and work part-time.

Most policies will allow employees to work part-time while on claim. Typically, an employee will need to have a certain percentage of their earnings lost to disability for a claim to remain active.

Please review the definition of disability, outlined in the certificate of coverage.

What happens to my benefits if the group policy terminates or I am terminated from my employment?

The cancellation of the policy or termination from employment does not affect a payable claim. If an employee is on claim and the policy is cancelled or the employee is terminated from employment, a claim will be paid to the same duration it would have been had either event not occurred.

1. Unum internal data, 2016. Note: Causes are listed in ranked order.

The policy or its provisions may vary or be unavailable in some states. The policy has exclusions and limitations which may affect any benefits payable. See the actual policy or your Unum representative for specific provisions and details of availability.

Group Short Term Disability:
Underwritten by Unum Life Insurance Company of America, Portland, ME. In New York, underwritten by First Unum Life Insurance Company, New York, NY.

Individual Short Term Disability:
Underwritten by Provident Life and Accident Insurance Company, Chattanooga, TN. In New York, underwritten by First Unum Life Insurance Company, New York, NY.

In New York:
This group policy provides disability income insurance only. It does NOT provide basic hospital, basic medical or major medical insurance as defined by the New York State Department of Financial Services.

This individual policy provides disability income insurance only. It does not provide basic hospital, basic medical or major medical insurance as defined by the New York State Department of Financial Services. The expected benefit ratio for the policy is 50%. This ratio is the portion of future premiums which the company expects to return as benefits, when averaged over all people with this policy.