Money Matters – Insurance Primer: Disability

BOSTON (CBS) – If you are single, you need disability insurance. Who will support you if you can no longer work? Could you move in with family? Would you want to? Families with children and a single worker need disability insurance. If you are a dual income couple, you both need disability insurance.

Between the ages of 25 and 55, you’re more than twice as likely to become disabled as die.

Life insurance protects your dependents if you should die. If you are unable to work it is disability insurance that will protect you and provide an income stream for you and your dependents.

Insurance companies will not normally insure a worker for more than 60% of their current income. The insurance companies want you to have some incentive to return to work after an injury. If they guaranteed you 100% of your income you may not ever want to return to work.

To purchase disability insurance look to your employer first for that’s where it will probably be the cheapest. If it is not being offered as a group benefit ask why. Sometimes all it takes is for the employees to ask. Because of the inherent abuses in the system fewer employers are offering disability insurance and it is becoming more expensive. If nothing is available then you may need to seek outside resources.

Check with your insurance agent and see what they can find for you. Check more than one source for prices can vary dramatically. A self-employed carpenter will find it hard to find disability insurance but he/she is the very person who may need it the most. So do your homework. I have compiled some websites that will be helpful:,, and

The chances of you experiencing a disability that will last three months or longer before you reach age 65 is around 50%. So if you don’t have disability insurance be sure you have an adequate emergency fund stashed away. If you are allowed to accumulate sick days and have accumulated 60 days or more you are probably covered adequately for a short-term disability. It is the long term disability that you need coverage for.

Social Security does provide disability benefits. But it is extremely difficult to qualify for Social Security disability benefits. You also may be eligible for workers compensation that is provided by your employer and pays a disability benefit if the disability is job related. Payments here are low also and don’t last very long for again they want you back to work as soon as possible.

More from Dee Lee
  • emom

    Disability Insurance, This is something we need to have available to all… How ever its difficult to get when you get older, If you are young and primarily healthy, you can get it for much less than someone in older. The older you are it can cost you more than the younger folks. Even if you are extremely healthy. Yes more and more employers are opting out of offering it to their employees, But if they do you must pay the cost, they do not usually offer to pay a portion… If they offer it, it may only cover you if you become disabled at your job and some will not cover you if you are on your way or from work… unless you are going from your home… Some of the policies are tricky. Some offer benefits for nursing homes But there can be a limit. The bottom line is and always be the cost of the policy. Then it will be WHAT it will cover. In the end way to many folks will not be able to get this insurance. And the cost of anyone being disabled is astronomical. Especially if there is around the clock care. And all the specially equipment that is needed for their care… $15,000. For a wheelchair with no motor, $5,000 or more for a hospital bed. A commode, $300 or more. Aids coming in to care for them, can not figure as that depends on the kind of care and duration. A nurse , same thing….. There is more that is needed with around the clock care for a disabled person at any age. Having this insurance would be great But it can put a huge strain on the financing of a person or family…

    • Italo

      Great post and well-taken information, emom. Thanks!

      • emom

        Italo, Thank You very much,,, When it comes to Health Insurance and Disability Insurance I have a huge passion with it… Dealing with many obstacles both professionally and personally,,, It is something many do not know about , nor are able to truly understand.. The wording of policies leaves you breathless.. Every time this subject comes up I will do my part in giving others the edge to work thru it… Disabled Americans struggle with having to pay for many things an insurance policy and or their health insurance SHOULD pay for… But the insurance world is out to DENY YOU, and so many give up… My advice to this problem is look into state and federal laws, they are in place to assist , IF you can understand them. Every state is different..
        One of these is the diabetic law,, for most of the insurances the law is in place which states all diabetic supplies and services are to be covered… Especially those services that are limited on your plan like vision, hearing, podiatry care, these are very important to them for their health , and these service should not be limited as long as the Doctor codes the bills with 250, DIABETIES MELITUS.. Always be sure your services are coded correctly.. Yes there is a fight but in the end do you want to pay out of pocket for a covered service,.. I am glad what I say is truly helpful… thank you again….

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