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Disability Claim Management Services

For over 25 years, Principal Life has been an industry leader in providing disability claim management and rehabilitation services. Our professional staff of in-house nurses and certified vocational rehabilitation specialists provide expert assistance and personal service to our customers. See Rehabilitation services for additional information.

Discover how we can help you and your employees understand the claims process and the services we offer to get your employees back to work.

Overview of claim management services

Our disability claim management services offer customers:

  • Single claim form submission for Short-term disability (STD), Long-Term Disability (LTD) and Life Waiver
  • Excellent customer satisfaction results
  • A personal representative for each claim
  • Online access to secure claim reports (current customers can login to view)
  • Electronic Funds Transfer (EFTs) to a permanently disabled person's bank account (Long-Term Disability claims only)
  • FICA services available upon request
  • W-2 services services available upon request

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Filing a disability claim

You can file a disability claim several ways:

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Verification of Claim

For each claim it is necessary for us to ensure an employee is eligible for benefits. Many resources are used when reviewing new and ongoing claims to help verify any claims, including:

  • Attending Physician's statement
  • Hospital records
  • Activity reports from investigative companies
  • Independent medical exams
  • Employer
  • Claimant
  • Consultation with Principal Life's disability nurse and vocational consultant
  • Visits by Principal Life's disability staff
  • Medical review by Principal Life's medical directors
  • Home Visit
  • Medical reviews

To ensure efficient and accurate claim service, additional information may be requested from the claimant, group policyholder and/or the attending physician if needed throughout the claims process.

  • The Claim Manager will call the claimant to determine the following:
    • Return to work intentions
    • Proposed treatment plan by the attending physician
    • Daily activities
    • Social Security disability status

The focus for any claim is to look at immediate return-to-work opportunities in the employee's regular occupation.

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Notifying the claimant of a decision

Once a determination has been made on the claim we will notify the claimant with a decision in writing (a copy also goes to the employer) that may include the following when appropriate:

  • The claim decision
  • Taxability of benefit
  • Social Security Disability issues
  • Notification of outstanding information needed
  • The need to contact us if returning to work
  • The need to report any additional income received
  • If denied, how to appeal the claim decision

When approved, a short-term disability claim will include a check along with an Explanation of Benefits document showing the duration period for your disability benefits.

When a long-term disability claim is approved, a letter will also include the final payment date for disability benefits and the date when the definition of disability changes.

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Ongoing processes and verification

We encourage early intervention and ongoing claim review to ensure all claims are managed promptly, providing the best possible result. This may involve using our in-house resources, which include:

  • Disability nurse consultants
  • Vocational rehabilitation consultants
  • Social Security coordinators
  • In-house physicians
  • We may also use external vendors as the situation warrants

The frequency of verification of an employee's current disability status depends on the following:

  • Definition of disability
  • Employee's medical condition
  • Prognosis of employee's medical condition

When the determination has been made that the claim has reached its lowest cost alternative, our staff will contact the employee at least once every 18-24 months to verify their condition has not changed and answer any questions they may have.

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IN 17545

Have a question? Call us at 1.800.986.3343

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