Evaluating a Disability Insurance Policy: 5 Things to Consider

long-term disability

 There are quite a few differences to consider when it comes to disability insurance. The rating of the insurer, the quality of the company, and even the maximum benefit limits are just a few things that you will need to think about. Before purchasing a disability insurance policy, it is important to review all these factors to ensure that you are buying a policy that fits your lifestyle and your needs.

Considering The Cost of Disability Insurance

One of the first questions many physicians will have is how much does disability insurance cost when searching for a policy. The premiums are a key component of a policy, and the rates will vary based on age, monthly benefit, gender and even occupational classification. The cost of the policy is an important factor, but it should not be the most important factor when choosing a policy.

Included Riders

Depending on a person’s field of work, the policy riders available can make or break the decision to purchase a specific policy. A residual disability rider will allow the beneficiary to work part-time and still receive benefits. For a physician who returns to work but in a lesser role, this can be extremely beneficial. A future increase option rider is another excellent option for those who want to increase their disability coverage as their career matures. There are plenty of other riders to choose from as well.

Knowing When to Purchase Coverage

There is a time and place to purchase disability coverage. There are a lot of benefits to purchasing disability insurance, regardless of the expense. For example, when a physician is just starting out as a young practitioner, their risk levels are high due to income limits and high debt levels. Buying a policy at this time is an ideal investment, as it will help prevent financial hardship should they become disabled. Also, policies are more affordable the younger a person happens to be.

Definition of Disability

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One of the most significant things to consider when buying a disability policy is what the insurance company’s definition of disability actually is. Check out their terms and conditions to see which specific protections are offered. Is it “own specialty” or another form? Are stress and depression covered under their disability terms? Some insurance companies will not approve a disability claim if you are able to work at all, even in another field. Others will offer some coverage for those unable to work in their specialty, however.

Plan Type

It is also critical to consider what type of plan is best to purchase. Group coverage is less expensive than other types, but the coverage is not as comprehensive. Association plans are also affordable at the onset, but the premiums increase as a person ages. That being said, they are guaranteed to be renewable. Individual plans are highly customizable and also the most expensive. They do offer the highest level of coverage and remain with the person even if they change jobs.

Securing a Policy to Protect Your Income

No one ever thinks that they will become disabled and unable to work. A disability insurance policy will help secure your income while you heal. The average claim typically lasts for three months, but without a comprehensive policy, the benefits may fall short. Make sure to choose a policy that fits your needs, and lifestyle, and is in line with your professional goals for the best results.