For Whole Family Security, Invest In Disability Insurance

by Darwin on June 8, 2020

Most of us think we know that health is precious, but until you face real tragedy, it’s hard to understand its full value – and even harder to understand the financial consequences of illness. This is especially true because there’s a lot of confusion about what safety nets exist for those who become seriously ill. Will Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) be enough to support you? What about FMLA or short-term disability through your job? These programs are important, but the fact is that if you want to protect yourself and your family, you’ll want to invest in a separate disability insurance policy.

Extending Your Disability Protection

Employers often offer short-term disability insurance to their staff so that, and some states mandate short-term disability insurance for all employees. It’s a smart move, one that helps to foster employee loyalty, while also allowing employers to retain these individuals and avoid the expenses and challenges of hiring and training a new employee. 

What many people overlook about short-term disability coverage is that it doesn’t last very long at all. For example, after birth, mothers typically get more coverage from FMLA than from short-term disability insurance. In other contexts, that means short-term disability insurance may be enough to recover from surgery or pneumonia, but if you can’t go back to work fairly promptly, you could be in real financial trouble.

A Whole Family Concern

Besides the brief duration of typical employer-provided disability insurance, many people consider investing in a long-term policy, especially if they have a family to protect. That’s because programs like SSDI don’t pay enough to live on, if you even qualify for it, and if you have a spouse or children to support, losing your job could put you all at risk of bankruptcy or even homelessness. 

While many do look into such policies, another large proportion hold back because people are overly optimistic about their long-term health. According to a Council for Disability Awareness study reported in Kiplinger, only 10% of people accurately estimate their risk of disability – they far underestimate it. That’s why it’s time to stop considering your options and move to choose a policy.

Finding A Disability Insurance Policy

If you’re ready to choose a long-term disability policy, there are several factors you should consider, but the good news is that the process doesn’t have to be complicated. Companies like Breeze offer affordable disability insurance via an online application, putting coverage within anyone’s reach. But while such applications can make getting insurance easier and more affordable, it’s still important to act sooner rather than later, since factors like age and health will determine what kind of coverage you qualify for and how much it will cost.

Is Disability Insurance Enough?

Long-term disability insurance is a valuable tool for protecting yourself and your family, but don’t let your research end there. Consider all the factors, such as how long the benefit period is, how much coverage it provides relative to your current salary, and how long the elimination period on the policy is. Extending the elimination period – the length of time you must be unable to work before the policy will begin paying out – can reduce your premiums substantially, while a longer benefit period can ensure financial security, no matter the circumstances, but will come with higher premiums.

Finally, it’s important to remember the wide variety of insurance policies available to any individual and the differences in what they cover. Disability insurance can prevent serious financial losses by bridging your salary gap, but won’t provide additional coverage for medical care. Health insurance, on the other hand, doesn’t always cover the sort of functional services that long-term care insurance pays for. Though most people don’t opt to invest in the full assortment of insurance policies on the market – that would be impractical and expensive – you know your needs best. What will help you feel secure in your family’s future? 

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