Short Term Disability

About the Program

Short term disability premium cost

This plan is administered by Cigna.

If you are on the clerical or service staff in a benefit-eligible position, you may be interested in short term disability (STD). This program helps protect your income until you are able to return to work or until you become eligible for long term disability, which takes effect should you become totally disabled for more than 90 calendar days.

The program pays you a benefit equal to 65 percent of your budgeted salary for the days or weeks you remain disabled. STD benefits cover any illness or injury for which you would otherwise be paid sick leave, including pregnancy.

STD is a flexible benefit offered only during annual open enrollment. If you enroll, coverage begins January 1 of the next year, or on your one-year Purdue service anniversary, whichever is later.

To receive short term disability payments, you must fulfill the following requirements:

  • You must be deemed medically unable to work by the company that administers Purdue's STD plan, and
  • You must satisfy a 21-calendar day elimination period.

The elimination period is a period of time during which you are unable to work due to injury or illness. You may receive sick leave or vacation pay during the elimination period.

While receiving STD benefit payments, you may also receive worker's compensation, if your illness or injury is work-related. Additionally, you're allowed to supplement your income through sick leave, vacation, paid parental leave or holiday pay. However, you may not receive an amount greater than 100 percent of your regular weekly salary from all sources of income combined. At the end of each calendar year, STD benefit payments will be reported as taxable income.

Who May Be Covered

Clerical and service staff who have worked at Purdue University for at least one year in a benefit-eligible position may be covered. If you have worked at Purdue for less than one year, you may enroll during annual open enrollment, but your coverage will not begin until your one-year Purdue service anniversary.


STD is an employee-funded program. You pay the full cost on a pre-tax basis. Your benefit is based on your current pay, so your premium for the coverage changes as your budgeted salary changes. The annual premium is established by taking your annual basic budgeted salary times .0068. So, for example, if your annual salary is $20,000, your annual cost for STD would be $136 ($20,000 x .0068). This amount, divided by either 18 or 26 pay periods, gives you the amount per paycheck that would be deducted for STD coverage.

For coverage to become effective, new enrollees must be actively at work on the day coverage is set to begin. Paid sick leave and paid vacation leave do not qualify as active work status.

Return to Work

If you are able to return to work, but in a reduced capacity, your STD benefits can help to protect your salary. While you are working in a reduced capacity, you can receive up to 100 percent of your salary. If you have the ability to return to work and the University can arrange an opportunity for you to return, you will be expected to return in order for your STD benefits to continue.

For assistance with short term disability, contact Human Resources, your department's payroll clerk, or your regional campus Human Resources office.


No benefits are payable for any period of disability during which the employee is incarcerated in a penal or corrections institution.

Benefits are not payable for any disability that results, directly or indirectly, from:

  • Suicide, attempted suicide, or self-inflicted injury while sane or insane;
  • War or any act of war, whether or not declared;
  • Active participation in a riot;
  • Commission of a felony;
  • Any cosmetic surgery or surgical procedure that is not medically necessary. Medically necessary means the surgical procedure is
    • prescribed by a physician as required treatment of the injury or sickness; and
    • appropriate according to conventional medical practice for the injury or sickness in the locality in which the surgery is performed. (Benefits will be payable if the disability is caused by the employee donating an organ in a non-experimental organ transplant procedure.)
  • The revocation, restriction, or non-renewal of your license, permit, or certification necessary to perform the duties of your occupation unless due solely to injury or sickness otherwise covered by the plan.

Need More Help?

  • Call Human Resources at 765-494-1533.
  • Contact CIGNA directly at 800-362-4462 to start a claim.

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