Short-Term Disability - Human Resources at Ohio State

Short-Term Disability

Ohio State strives to offer benefits that enhance financial security for you and your family. Short-term disability (STD) coverage, if elected and with an approved claim, provides income replacement after 30 calendar days and up to 90 calendar days, after which you may be eligible for long-term disability benefits.

Ohio State partners with Unum, a leading insurance provider, to offer STD to eligible employees. Contact Unum at (866) 245-3013 one month in advance to start your claim application if you are expecting to be off work for more than 30 calendar days.

If you have elected short-term disability (STD) coverage, your approved, weekly, non-taxable STD benefit is 60% of your gross monthly salary, up to a $5,000 maximum. You may use vacation leave, sick leave, parental leave and compensatory time while receiving STD benefits; however, sick leave and parental leave will offset your STD benefits. Any other disability payments for which you may be eligible—such as Workers’ Compensation—will also offset your STD payments.

Birth mothers who are eligible for STD benefits and paid parental leave should coordinate these benefits appropriately. In general, paid parental leave is used during the 30 calendar day elimination period and immediately following the end of the approved disability benefit.

For assistance coordinating your leave benefits contact Integrated Absence Management and Vocational Services in the Office of Human Resources.

For additional details please see the Disability Program Specific Plan Details.

Faculty and staff must hold an eligible appointment of at least 50% FTE (full-time equivalent). Enrollment is voluntary and you pay the premiums on an after-tax basis.

Pre-Existing Conditions

No benefits are paid for a disability that is due to a pre-existing condition. Under the plan, a “pre­ existing condition” refers to any injury, sickness, mental illness, substance abuse or pregnancy* that began before you were insured.

You have a pre-existing condition if:

  • You received medical treatment, consultation, care or services or took prescribed drugs or medicines in the three months prior to your coverage effective date, and
  • The disability begins in the first 12 months after your coverage effective date unless you have been treatment-free for three consecutive months after your coverage effective date.

*For new hires only, pregnancy is not considered to be a pre-existing condition under the STD program if the coverage is elected within the first 31 days of employment.

For short-term disability (STD) coverage, visit Employee Self Service to apply via eBenefits. Medical evidence of insurability is not required if you enroll within 31 calendar days of:

  • Employment in an eligible appointment. Contact your human resource professional or use the Benefits Eligibility tool to see if you are eligible for STD.
  • A qualifying status change, including divorce, death of a spouse and birth/adoption/legal guardianship/legal custody.

You may enroll without evidence of insurability during special non-annual Open Enrollment periods, as designated by Unum. At all other times, enrollment is approved by Unum and requires evidence of insurability. The evidence of insurability can be completed electronically on Unum’s website.

Your STD coverage will take effect the first day of the pay period following:

  • Receipt of the STD election, if you apply for coverage within 31 days after you become eligible.
  • Approval by Unum, if you elect coverage at a time when you are required to submit evidence of insurability.

Your physician has determined you are unable to work due to an illness, injury or medical condition and has estimated you will be off work longer than 30 calendar days.

Steps to filing a short-term disability claim:

  • Call Unum at the toll-free number listed below to initiate a claim.
  • The following information is required to initiate a claim:
    • Policy number 121156
    • Physician’s name, address, fax and phone number
    • Brief description of your medical condition, including date of injury or beginning of illness and whether it is work-related
    • Dates of your first, most recent and next scheduled doctor’s appointments
    • Last day worked, first day absent from work and date you expect to return to work
    • Work restrictions provided by your physician
  • Notify your physician that you have filed a disability claim and that medical records will be requested by Unum.
  • Fax or mail a copy of the signed Unum Authorization and Ohio State Authorization forms to Unum at the fax number listed below.
  • Contact Integrated Absence Management and Vocational Services at The Ohio State University at (800) 678-6413 for questions related to disability plan coverage, other Ohio State benefits, coordination of medical leave and return to work.

Prompt and complete information from you and your physician will help assure a timely decision and payment if you are eligible.

Unum
Phone: (866) 245-3013
Fax: (800) 447-2498
Mon-Fri: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. EST

A Return to Work Release Form is required in order to return to work following your medical leave. Integrated Absence Management and Vocational Services staff, who provide disability benefits and leave services, may coordinate with your physician and department to develop return-to-work and remain-at-work goals and expectations. This may include the identification of temporary transitional work placements in accordance with the Transitional Work Policy based on your skills, restrictions and departmental needs.

It’s important for you to be familiar with Ohio State’s leave policies. If you are unable to return to work, please review these policies, including the Family and Medical Leave Policy and Unpaid Leave Policy. Classified Civil Service (CCS) employees should also review Rules for CCS Chapter 73: Leave Policies related to unpaid leaves and disability separation. Additional information is also available at CCS Disability Separation.

Integrated Absence Management and Vocational Services staff in the Office of Human Resources, who coordinate disability benefits and leave services, can assist you with referrals to other benefits and resources that you may be eligible to receive, including, but not limited to, OPERS disability retirementSTRS disability retirement and Social Security benefits.