NU Online News Service, Nov. 2, 2004, 1:55 p.m. EST

A Northwestern benefits giant has updated the line of products it offers small businesses.[@@]

Standard Insurance Company, Portland, Ore., has introduced The Standard Select family of insurance products for small businesses.

The new product family includes revised versions of Standard’s group life, long-term disability, short-term disability and group dental insurance policies.

Standard, a unit of StanCorp Financial Group Inc., Portland, will be selling the products to businesses with as few as 2 employees.

Additions to the group life product include accelerated benefits, repatriation benefits and a travel assistance program, Standard says.

The STD and LTD products now offer guarantee issue underwriting options for groups of all sizes, and the LTD product now offers return-to-work incentives and benefits designed to help employers make reasonable accommodations for insured workers who are returning to work despite the fact that they have lingering problems with activities such as walking.