Exploring the Merits of Disability Insurance

While most people in America are diligent about purchasing life insurance, many seem far less inclined to buy disability insurance. Even though statistics tell us that at a young age, we are far more likely to experience a disability rather than death, we still fail to realize the profound financial implications of not being covered in this area. Consider that during your working years, you’ve got a one in three chance of becoming disabled.1 If you think about it in terms of your financial needs, factor into the equation that in the event of a disability, your medical expenses will rise. With a lengthy period and no income, your family will experience hardship and difficulty.

Every two seconds, an American is injured in an accident.2 If one happens, you can’t always rely on Workers’ Compensation or Social Security. About 75% of disabling injuries occur outside of work, where your employer does not cover you.3 And, only one-third of people who apply for Social Security disability benefits are approved.4 Therefore, it seems practical to be financially prepared should something happen to you.

Selecting The Right Type of Coverage

There are two forms of disability policies that would protect you in the event of a disability. Your employer may offer a group disability insurance policy.   While such coverage would offer a base layer, it will pay you an amount that is much lower than your regular income. With extra medical bills in the picture, dependence on a group policy alone will most likely not provide enough financial coverage.

You can also obtain individual long-term disability insurance for yourself. This policy would be the safest bet to cover all your financial needs. You can choose the policy and benefits that best suit your needs; generally, such benefits are tax-free.

If you were suddenly faced with the prospect of a disability, it would be reassuring to know that your family’s financial needs will be taken care of. The security that comes with disability income insurance reduces the risk that your family will be financially challenged should the unexpected happen.

1 Almost 3 in 10 20-year-olds will become disabled before retirement, according to the Social Security Administration, 2001

2 National Safety Council, Injury Facts, 2000 Edition

3 National Safety Council, Safety Agenda for the Nation, 2000

4 Social Security Administration, SSI Annual Statistical Report, 2000