Published June 21, 2016
Volume 24, Number 6

Sedgwick Claims Management Services Helps Major

Companies' Insurance Programs

Sedgwick Claims Management
Sedgwick Claims Management's new Hacienda location.

By Jay Hipps

Sedgwick Claims Management, a company with over 13,000 employees in 275 offices in the U.S., Canada, Puerto Rico and the U.K., has relocated its 40-person Pleasanton office to the Hacienda Lakes development at 4234 Hacienda Drive.  The company completed the move in December, 2015.  
“We are what's known as a third party administrator. Probably the easiest way to understand what we do is we're essentially an outsourced claims department for companies that choose to either be self-insured or to have large deductibles with insurance companies who approve us to manage the claims on their behalf,” says Rick Miller, assistant VP. “For example, we handle all types of claims in the company from worker's compensation to auto liability to property to general liability to disability and health claims. There's not much that we can't handle.”
The Pleasanton office — part of Sedgwick’s worker’s compensation group — manages claims for many of the biggest names in business, including Apple, Intel, Cisco, Tenet Healthcare, and Sonic Automotive.
“Most of our clients come to us because they have received permission from the State of California to self-insure for worker's compensation,” Miller says. “Most large employers will do that because it’s cheaper to fund their own losses than it is to buy an insurance policy. They set up an account, put the money in, and we handle a claim for them.”
Companies that prefer to work with insurance carriers can pursue a policy with a large deductible or a self-insured retention, Miller adds. “You can go to a major large commercial carrier and tell them that you'd like to handle your own claims and you'll be responsible for the first $500,000 or $1 million of the losses, and then after that the carrier would kick in to pay for those catastrophic losses. In those cases we have to be approved by the insurance carrier to handle the claims on their behalf for their policyholders. The insurance companies like to sell those products to large companies because it means that the company has some risk and some skin in the game, so they're going to be much more diligent about managing their risk rather than just turning to the insurance company and saying pay everything.”
Sedgwick’s ability to customize its services to meet the needs of large companies has played a key role in its success.
“Sedgwick's claim to fame, if you will, is that most of our clients have typically been the large, Fortune 500 companies and we have been able to tailor their insurance claims program to their needs,” says Miller. “We’ve been able to customize each and every program for each and every client. If you want red paper, we give you red paper; if you want blue paper, we give you blue paper, and that's really been our success over the years. It's why people come to us.”

That approach has also provided Sedgwick with the opportunity to expand its service offering into new areas. “We're at the size where there’s not much we can’t do. Many of our new programs — like getting into the disability claims arena — really started because a client came to us and said, ‘you did a great job with my workers comp — can you handle my disability claims?’ And we said yes, and gathered the people and the resources to do it. Handling disability claims is one of our fastest growing product lines right now because a lot of companies have decided they want to integrate the disability with the worker's comp and the health benefits. We have computer systems that allow us to manage all those on one platform.”
For additional information on Sedgwick Claims Management Services, access the company’s web site at www.sedgwick.com.


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