June 04, 2012

Responding to Workplace Trends, Sun Life Financial Launches Group Voluntary Disability Insurance

First in a series of voluntary benefits solutions for employers

WELLESLEY, Mass. (June 4, 2012) As more businesses offer workers the option to purchase group insurance benefits, the U.S. business group of Sun Life Financial Inc. (NYSE:SLF, TSX:SLF) today launched a flexible set of voluntary group disability insurance options: Voluntary Short Term Disability (VSTD) and Voluntary Long Term Disability (VLTD).

These benefit options represent the first of a spectrum of voluntary benefits that Sun Life is launching to meet the diverse financial needs of the American workforce. Although medical problems contribute to roughly half of all personal bankruptcies and home foreclosures in the United States, [1] 65 million full-time workers lack access to group long-term disability insurance.[2]

“Voluntary Short Term Disability (VSTD) and Voluntary Long Term Disability (VLTD) allows employers to give millions of workers the chance to gain short-term and long-term disability coverage at group rates, tailor-made to their wallets, and without increasing their employer’s overhead costs,” said Bob Klein, Vice President of Sun Life’s U.S. Voluntary Benefits Division. “This represents a win-win for U.S. employers and the financial security of their workers.”

Employees can select:

  • Either a dollar amount, or a percentage of salary to replace a portion of income in case of disability,
  • An elimination period, which defines how soon a claimant would receive a benefit after the start of disability,
  • One of several options for the duration of the benefit, which determines how long the benefit would pay for a qualifying disability.

“Our recent study suggests that many workers don’t protect themselves against the risk of long-term disability even when they have the chance to purchase group coverage,” said Michael E. Shunney, Senior Vice President and General Manager for Sun Life’s U.S. Employee Benefits Group Division. “So we’ve decided to do more than release a suite of versatile workplace benefits. We’re offering educational resources that help workers learn about their risks and take prudent action to protect themselves and their families.”

About Sun Life Financial
Sun Life Financial is a leading international financial services organization providing a diverse range of protection and wealth accumulation products and services to individuals and corporate customers. Chartered in 1865, Sun Life Financial and its partners today have operations in key markets worldwide, including Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Hong Kong, the Philippines, Japan, Indonesia, India, China, and Bermuda. In the United States and elsewhere, insurance products are offered by members of the Sun Life Financial group that are insurance companies. Sun Life Financial Inc., the holding company for the Sun Life Financial group of companies, is a public company. It is not an insurance company and does not offer insurance products for sale in the United States or elsewhere, and does not guarantee the obligations of its insurance company subsidiaries. In the United States, Sun Life Financial provides a range of products and services to employers and their employees, including group and voluntary life, disability, dental and stop-loss insurance products. These products are issued by Sun Life Assurance Company of Canada in all states except New York. In New York, these products are issued by Sun Life Insurance and Annuity Company of New York. Product offerings may not be available in all states and may vary depending on state laws and regulations. Sun Life Financial Inc. trades on the Toronto (TSX), New York (NYSE), and Philippine (PSE) stock exchanges under the ticker symbol SLF. For more information, visit


Media contact:
Tim Stone
Sun Life Financial
T: 781-366-5376


SLPC 24262  6/2012 (exp. 6/2017)

[1]. Personal bankruptcies: Medical problems contributed to 62% of all personal bankruptcies filed in the United States in 2007, according to “Medical Bankruptcy in the United States, 2007: Results of a National Study,” The American Journal of Medicine, 6/4, 2009. Home foreclosures: Medical problems contributed to half of all home foreclosure filings in 2006, according to, “Get Sick, Get Out: The Medical Causes of Home Mortgage Foreclosures,” Health Matrix, Journal of Law-Medicine, Aug., 2008.
[2] Bureau of Labor Statistics, March, 2011.