Preparedness and Response

Yes, our workforce is working remotely where possible to continue supporting you during this time. Like many businesses, we’re experiencing challenges due to COVID 19 so we encourage you to use our self-service options on guardiananytime.com as much as possible.

Here you can:

  • View detailed benefit information
  • Check status of claim (except Life & Critical Illness)
  • Check status of Evidence of Insurability
  • Print ID cards, forms, & certificate booklets
  • Access dental cost estimator and educational information
  • And more

You can register for a Guardian Anytime account and sign in any time to see what’s covered, submit a claim, find a provider, and more.

To register for an account on Guardian Anytime:

Find your member ID number. It will be on your ID card, enrollment confirmation, and/or any correspondence you’ve received from us. You’ll also need your Group ID number. If you don’t see a Group ID Number, contact your HR Department or Plan Administrator (you’ll need it to register).

  1. Visit our self-registration page to start the process. Choose Member as your User Role.
  2. Continue the process to complete your profile, click Submit, and you’re done.

We will keep you informed through our website, updates to these FAQ, and/or with communications to your employer.  Simply go to Guardianlife.com, select “important coronavirus updates” and then “customers.”

Guardian offers many products and services to help protect employees’ health and financial well-being, as well as manage their absences.  At a high level, the benefits that could apply include:

  • Hospital Indemnity – If a covered member is admitted to the hospital for COVID-19, a Hospital Indemnity benefit, if applicable, may be paid according to the terms of the contract.  
  • Short Term Disability (STD) – Employees covered by a Guardian Short Term Disability plan may be eligible for benefits if they’re diagnosed with COVID-19 and are sick and unable to perform the major duties of their job. Eligibility is determined based on medical documentation and additional information received by Guardian. Some Guardian contracts include a Quarantine Benefit Rider, which can provide benefits in a quarantine situation as ordered by a doctor. Read more about the Quarantine Benefit Rider.
  • Absence Management Services – Under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA), a new leave is available to employees of public employers and employees of private employers with fewer than 500 employees. The leave is for employees unable to work or telework due to a school or childcare closure for a minor child as a result of COVID-19. Employees may also be eligible for leave under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) which entitles the employee to unpaid leave when individuals or family members are ill as a result of COVID-19.
  • NY and NJ Paid Family Leave and State Mandated Disability – NY and NJ recently released clarification that quarantined individuals are eligible for coverage. 

Employee Assistance Program (EAP) Services – Integrated Behavioral Health (IBH), our EAP partner, has materials that provide education and tips about the virus, as well as information that can help you cope with anxiety that can accompany stressful situations.

Effective 3/1/2020, Guardian will continue to consider a full-time employee who is currently enrolled to be eligible for benefits until 6/30/2020 if their eligibility has been impacted by a reduction of work hours, lay off, or furlough.

Your employer has been offered this temporary accommodation, but they are not required to use it. Always check with your employer to learn if the temporary accommodation applies to you and your personal situation (premiums must continue to be paid).

This temporary accommodation applies to:

  • Dental
  • Vision
  • Accident and Cancer
  • Critical Illness
  • Hospital Indemnity
  • Life
  • Accidental Death and Dismemberment
  • Optional Life
  • Optional Accidental Death and Dismemberment
  • Permanent Life
  • Short Term Disability
  • Long Term Disability1

Under the STD plan, employees may be eligible for benefits if they’re diagnosed with COVID-19 and, as a result, are unable to perform the major duties of their job. Eligibility will be determined based on medical documentation.    

Guardian Critical Illness insurance now offers the Infectious Contagious Disease Benefit rider (if included on your plan), which pays 30 percent of the lump sum critical illness benefit to insured employees in the event of a COVID-19 diagnoses that requires hospitalization for five or more consecutive days. This benefit also applies to any future strains of the coronavirus that may cause severe illness and/or hospitalization, as well as any future emergence of a severe health threat caused by a contagious virus

Yes. If you’re admitted to the hospital for any reason, a benefit may be paid, according to the terms of the contract. All plans pay for an initial hospital admission benefit, and many plans pay for a daily hospital confinement benefit (including Intensive Care Unit).

Some plans may include benefits related to doctor office visits, diagnostic tests, prescription drug benefit, and urgent care and emergency room benefit.

Please read the details of your policy to see if these benefit options are applicable.

In most cases, Cancer Insurance doesn’t provide benefits for a sickness like COVID-19. However, benefits may be payable if the plan includes an Intensive Care Unit rider. Please read the details of your policy to see if these benefit options are applicable.

Guardian will cover active virus testing under our Accident Wellness benefit as a Routine Exam for COVID-19 tests performed on or after 3/1/2020. This benefit is not payable under the Wellness Benefit included with Critical Illness, Hospital Indemnity and Cancer products.

In order to be eligible for FML, you or the family member you’re caring for needs to have medical documentation that certifies the condition meets the definition of a serious health condition.

Under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, a new paid leave is available for employees who are unable to work or telework due to a school or place of care closure for a minor child as a result of COVID-19 precautions.

If you have the quarantine benefit rider with your STD policy and you are unable to work due to quarantine, you may be eligible for benefits under Guardian’s Short Term Disability (STD) Quarantine Benefit Rider. Check your policy details.

After the quarantine period, if you’re determined to be disabled due to COVID-19, benefits could be paid for the disability until the maximum period under the plan (excluding any weeks paid for the quarantine period).

The Quarantine Benefit Rider covers employees if they’re placed under a doctor-ordered quarantine and are unable to perform the major duties of their job. The employee must be suspected of carrying or having been exposed to an infectious and contagious disease as determined by the doctor who orders the quarantine. The nature of quarantine and the definition to support it is determined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) or the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services.

The Quarantine Benefit Rider includes a benefit waiting period and maximum duration that aligns with the STD policy. The rider has been included on all 2016 contract (DI 16) series for STD and is not available in Washington or New York. Refer to your policy.

Claims Handling

For fastest processing, we highly recommend you submit your claim online.

Our site gives you everything you need to submit your claim electronically, without the need of a printer or mailing us forms.

You can enroll in our Direct Pay program when you submit your claim online. By submitting disability claims online, you can set up your bank account to have disability payments deposited directly.

Davis, Guardian, and VSP Vision claims have protocols in place to prevent any disruption in service, including remote work for their employees. Since most claims are completed electronically, we can continue supporting you as usual.

No, we are not waiving premium payments at this time. However, we are taking special action to extend your premium payment grace period from 30 days to 60 days past your premium due date (longer in some states).

Yes, and due to the coronavirus pandemic, Guardian will extend grace periods an additional 30 days to pay premiums as a temporary solution unless directed otherwise by a department of insurance. 

For example, if a plan currently has a 30-day grace period, we will extend the grace period an additional 30 days from the premium due date.

A premium payment due 5/1/20 normally would have a grace period to 6/1/20 (30-day grace period) before cancellation. Due to the pandemic, the grace period is now extended to 7/1/20.

Dental and Vision

We offer a Guardian teledentistry service for our PPO members. They can access it at www.virtudent.com/guardianteledentistry

Providers and retailers are still fulfilling orders, but their hours should be checked before visiting since many have revised schedules at this time.

If you have VSP and Davis coverages, you have in-network online eyewear options available: 

Disclaimer

If the covered person dies before completing 5 consecutive day(s) of hospital confinement, we will pay this benefit so long as all other terms of this benefit are satisfied. We do not pay this benefit for any disease or illness that is not specifically listed in the definition of infectious or contagious diseases. Guardian covers only the first occurrence of an infectious disease, and pays one benefit per person, per lifetime.

The information presented here is for informational purposes and is not intended to serve as legal advice. Please consult with appropriate professionals for legal, compliance, and tax counsel as needed. Please refer to any relevant insurance policy or absence management agreement you have with Guardian for more specified contract details. In the event of any conflict between the information presented here and the relevant policy/agreement, the policy/agreement will control.

Insurance products are underwritten and issued by The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America, New York, NY. Products are not available in all states.  Policy limitations and exclusions apply.  Optional riders and/or features may incur additional costs. 

Work Life Matters Program services are provided by Integrated Behavioral Health, Inc., and its contractors. Guardian does not provide any part of WorkLifeMatters program services. Guardian is not responsible or liable for care or advice given by any provider or resource under the program. This information is for illustrative purposes only. It is not a contract. Only the Administration Agreement can provide the actual terms, services, limitations and exclusions. Guardian and IBH reserve the right to discontinue the Work Life Matters program at any time without notice. Legal services provided through Work Life Matters will not be provided in connection with or preparation for any action against Guardian, IBH, or your employer. The Work Life Matters program is not an insurance benefit and may not be available in all states.

The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America®, New York, NY. © Copyright 2020 The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America. 

1 Does not apply to layoff or furlough situations.

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