Now that you’ve read last week’s blog about disability insurance, you’re ready to start applying.
Getting Disability Coverage
There are a few ways in which you can purchase disability insurance. You can get coverage by:
- Purchasing disability insurance through your job. Most employers offer a disability policy through their company insurance provider. However, some employers don’t provide disability coverage, but do offer it as a voluntary benefit. This allows employees to buy coverage through the employer’s insurance broker at a group rate.
- Signing up for employer-sponsored coverage at work. According to the Society for Human Resource Management, California, Hawaii, New Jersey, New York, and Rhode Island provide or require employers to provide short-term disability benefits for their employees.
- Buying disability insurance through a professional group. Many professional associations offer members coverage at group rates.
- Purchasing an individual disability policy. There are certain benefits and drawbacks to having your own policy, and there may be specific reasons to buy your own policy versus purchasing through your employer.
Purchasing Your Own Disability Policy
There are several reasons you may want to buy your own disability insurance policy, including not enough coverage from your employer or being self-employed. Employer-sponsored disability insurance typically only pays a portion of your base salary, so it’s a good idea to supplement that coverage if you depend on bonuses or commissions to make ends meet at your household.
Regardless if coverage is offered through your employer or not, everyone is at risk of becoming disabled. If you have an income stream that could be lost due to a disability, you should consider buying protection.
Buying your own policy allows you to:
- Customize your disability insurance with extra features, such as cost-of-living adjustments
- Choose the insurance company with the best offerings for the right price
- Keep your coverage with you, should you change jobs or careers
- Control your coverage. You don’t want to be without coverage just because your employer decided to stop providing it, do you?
- Collect tax-free benefits, should you become disabled
Employer-Sponsored vs. Individual Disability Coverage
It can also be difficult figuring out what type of policy works best for you.
Employer-sponsored disability coverage is typically easy to qualify for, with little or no premium cost for you. Individual disability insurance is portable with benefits customized to fit your needs, with the added option of choosing your own insurance company. But it will generally cost you more in premiums and can be difficult to qualify for.
Each coverage option has its pros and cons. A blended plan—purchasing your own coverage to pad your employer-sponsored coverage—is a safety net that protects both you and your family. However, what works best for some may not be what works best for you.
Purchasing disability insurance doesn’t have to be a hassle. Call us today at our Martinsburg office at 304-263-3361, or the Inwood office at 304-229-7227 to talk to an agent. You can also contact us for a free quote here. We will work with you to ensure your future and protect your livelihood!!
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