It’s difficult to imagine life without work. But, if you are disabled or become too ill to work, how will you pay your bills? If you have a disability insurance plan through work, it may cover some of the costs of living while not working. However, many people don’t understand how much disability coverage they should carry and the importance of this type of protection.
When calculating how much disability coverage will be necessary for you and your family’s needs, you need to consider additional costs that come with illnesses or disabilities.
What is Disability Insurance?
Disability insurance pays you a tax-free benefit if you become severely disabled and cannot work in your usual occupation. That is, it would pay you help if you were not able to work at all – but not for partial disability. It is usually purchased through an employer or paid for by the individual. Disability premiums paid by individuals can be tax-deductible medical expenses, and benefits paid by the employer may be excluded from income.
Understand How Your Disability Policy Works
It is essential to understand how your disability policy works and the definition of “disability.” You will want to know if there are any maximum or minimum benefits and how long you will receive income from the plan. Some policies offer a benefit for a specified period, such as two years, and you can purchase additional coverage as needed.
There is a need to understand the complex issues involved in disability insurance claims and has helped people obtain their rightful disability benefits. When considering claiming your own personal or family’s disability insurance benefits, consider consulting with an experienced disability insurance lawyer first to ensure that your rights and best interests are protected at all times. They will guide you on the different types of disability insurance as well.
Ensure that Any Pre-Existing Conditions Will Be Covered
When purchasing a disability insurance policy, you will want to ensure that any pre-existing conditions will be covered. If your child had an ear infection last year and now needs braces on his teeth as well as hearing aids, those procedures should be protected as they are needed.
What Does Disability Insurance Cover?
You can buy disability insurance that will pay you a percentage of your salary as long as you cannot work due to illness or injury (severe physical or mental impairment). Many types of disability coverage include partial or permanent physical disabilities and mental disabilities.
Things to Consider before Purchasing a Policy
Most people purchase disability insurance to replace their loss of income. Keep in mind that you may be considered “disabled” by the Social Security Administration if your work-related injury or illness prevents you from being able to do any work for at least 12 months. Your health insurance can also cover some permanent disabilities, making it a cheaper option to go with.
Remember the reduced earning capacity. Disability insurance is not just about replacing your income. It’s also about protecting the reduced earning capacity resulting from a disability. For example, if you’re an accountant and acquire a severe illness that prevents you from working at a full-time job for 5 or 10 years, then there is a possibility that you will never be able to work as an accountant again. With disability insurance, this loss in earning power will be covered.
How Much Disability Insurance Do You Need?
You can calculate how much disability coverage you need using the following steps:
- Calculate your fixed expenses (ex, mortgage/rent, credit card debt).
- See what benefits are available through your employer’s group policy or public disability insurance policies.
- Compare the two figures and get coverage from either your employer or public disability insurance up to the amount not provided by your employer’s group disability policy.
The decision to purchase a disability insurance policy is essential and should be made with careful consideration. If you find yourself in the position of needing disability benefits, it’s not always clear what your options are and how much coverage you’ll need. Looking for an insurance disability advocate is significant as they understand the landscape of long-term disability and insurance well.