FAQ - Short Term Income Replacement

for Non-Exempt Staff

What is the eligibility requirement?
Immediate eligibility for regular non-exempt staff who work a regular schedule of 20 or more hours per week.

Can I use STIR for an absence of less than one calendar week?
No. The Short-Term Income Replacement (STIR) benefit is intended to cover illness-related absences of longer than one calendar week.
For absences shorter than one calendar week due to illness (including the illness of an immediate family member), the staff member is paid under the University’s new Incidental Days policy.

Does STIR pay for the illness of my family member?
No. STIR covers only the employee’s own (non-work related) illness or injury.

How will I be paid during the one calendar week waiting period?
The University’s Incidental Days policy provides employees a number of paid leave days each year. These Incidental Days, if available, will cover your waiting period.

If no Incidental Days are available, vacation time (if any) will be used.

How long will STIR income replacement pay last?
STIR will last the duration of the illness as defined by the health care provider up to a maximum of 25 weeks, after which the University’s Long Term Disability benefit may apply.

Is overtime or other additional pay included as earnings for calculating STIR payments?
No, STIR is calculated on regular pay only.

Are STIR payments taxed?
Yes. Because STIR is a University-provided benefit with no cost to staff, STIR payments must be taxed as regular income.

Will insurance premiums and taxes be deducted from STIR payments?
Yes. Any applicable deductions and withholdings from the employee’s pay (such as insurance premium deductions and/or tax withholdings) will also be deducted from STIR payments.

How do I report a short-term illness or injury?
The Hartford administers the University’s STIR program. If you believe you qualify for STIR, you must notify your supervisor and also contact The Hartford by calling their toll-free number is 800-549-6514 or online at www.TheHartfordAtWork.com or you can download the app by searching for “My Benefits at The Hartford” at the Apple©App Store or GooglePlay™ Store.

If I am out 3 days, do I need a note from the doctor?
If you are out longer than 3 days, you will need to contact The Harford as it may be a FMLA event. You should continue to follow your department’s procedure.

Will the policy for exempt staff be changing?
The exempt sick leave policy will be reviewed.

If a situation qualifies for FMLA, does it also automatically qualify for STIR?
It depends on the situation. The standards for FMLA and STIR are different. In some cases, both will be approved and will run concurrently.

Who approves STIR?
The Hartford does the medical review of STIR claims and makes the determination.

Is STIR used for intermittent absences?
No, Incidental Days/Hours are used for intermittent absences.

If an employee is currently on unpaid leave, do they receive the 10 Incidental days on July 1, 2016?
It depends on the type of unpaid leave they are on. Please call askHR at 574-631-5900.

Who pays STIR – The Hartford or the University?
The University pays STIR directly through the Office of Payroll Services.

*What happens when someone is off on STIR for 20 weeks, they return to work and then need to be off again for something new? *
A new illness or injury requires a five day waiting period during which pay would come from Incidental Days. A recurring illness does not require another waiting period.

If someone is taking FMLA and it is longer than 12 weeks, what happens between weeks 12 through 25? Is your job still protected?
Approval by The Hartford for Short Term Income Replacement is job-protected time.

During the FMLA transition, how will my intermittent claim work?
CareWorks is transferring all open leaves to The Hartford as well as all historical records and supporting documentation. Staff with open leaves do not need to take any action unless their claim is ending and it needs to be recertified. Contact The Hartford to recertify any claim with a closure date after June 30, 2016 that needs to be recertified.

June 28, 2016