Disability Insurance

Think about this...What would happen if you were suddenly unable to work due to an illness or injury?  If you were without your paycheck, how long would you be able to make your mortgage or rent payment, buy groceries or pay other bills before feeling the stress?  If you're like the the majority of working Americans (7 out of 10), you wouldn't be able to make it a month before financial difficulties set in.  Even more astounding, one in four would have problems immediately.  Cue a disability insurance policy.

You don't hesitate to insure your home, car, boat and other valuable possessions - so why wouldn't you also protect your ability to pay for all of those things?  In the event of a disabling illness or injury, disability insurance can help you maintain your standard of living until you're able to get back to work. 

There are several sources of disability benefits that you may be able to access including from the government or your employer.  These include Workers Compensation, State Disability Insurance, Social Security, Employer-Sponsored Coverage, Individual Disability Insurance.  

Simply put, if you are working and collect a paycheck, you most likely need disability insurance.  If you check that box, you should meet with our insurance solution providers to ensure you have a disability insurance policy in place to protect your ability to earn.

 

Life events that cause you to reevaluate your disability insurance coverage:

Life can throw you a lot of curve balls.  You should be sure to reevaluate your disability insurance coverage if you're getting married, having a child, buying a home, changing jobs or planning for college. 

  • Changes at work: If you work for a company that provides its employees with group disability insurance, benefits typically replace a fixed percentage of your salary, say, 50%. So if you get a raise, your disability benefit will automatically adjust upward. If you’re fairly well compensated already and your income places you at your company’s maximum monthly cap for disability payments, often set around $4,000 or $5,000, this would be an exception. If you get a raise and you’re concerned about the loss of income that would occur if you were to become disabled, you can seek to supplement your group coverage with an individually purchased policy.
  • Changes at home: The need to protect your income with disability insurance becomes even more pronounced when other people are dependent on that income, like your spouse, newborn child or an elderly parent. Every time there’s a change in your family situation, take a minute to consider whether that change should trigger a reevaluation of your disability insurance needs.
  • Buying a home: Consider increasing your disability insurance coverage to keep pace with the way your family is accustomed to living. When you buy individual coverage, it sometimes makes sense to pay extra for a Future Purchase Option rider. This provision ensures that health issues that may have arisen since you purchased your policy won’t prevent you from increasing your coverage.

    You’ll also want to consider buying individual disability income insurance, or increasing existing coverage, every time you assume a significant amount of new debt. The bills won’t stop just because you’ve been in an accident and are unable to work for a period of time. You’ll need a source of replacement income to make sure that you’ll still be able to make your mortgage or car loan payments.

The possibility of a disabling illness or injury may seem remote, but the statistics tell a different story...

  • You have a 3 in 10 chance of suffering a disability that keeps you out of work for 90 days or longer at some point during your working career
  • 90% of disability are caused by illnesses, not accidents
  • 7 in 10 working Americans couldn't make it a month before financial difficulties would set in
  • 1 in 4 would have problems immediately
  • 50% of Americans couldn't meet expenses after just 1 month without a paycheck
  • 1 in 4 of today's 20 year-olds will become disabled before they retire

You also have to think long term...

  • How much do you earn in a year and what would that be over a lifetime? A 25-year-old worker who makes $50,000 a year and suffers a permanent disability could lose $3.8 million in future earnings

All statistics provided by LifeHappens.org

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