Disability insurance replaces lost income if you are unable to work because of illness or accident.
There are several ways to cover your lost income including employer-paid disability insurance (required in many states); possibly benefits from Social Security, Veterans Administration, your auto insurance policy; and/or an individual disability income insurance policy.
The following addresses the latter option above: private disability income insurance. This type of policy will typically replace 50% - 70% of income while you are disabled. Even if your private policy is combined with other sources of disability benefits, you will rarely, if ever, replace 100% of your previous income.
There are two types of disability insurance policies:
Long-term Disability (LTD) insurance pays benefits from a few years to a lifetime, and benefits will not begin until a waiting period of several weeks to several months has passed.
Short-term Disability (STD) insurance has a shorter waiting period of a week or two if at all, and it typically pays benefits for a maximum of approximately two years.
Insurance companies that offer disability insurance coverage could differ on the definition of “disability”. Some pay benefits if you are unable to perform any occupation for which your experience and education qualify you, whereas others pay benefits if you are not able to perform your own occupation. In fact, some policies use a combination of definitions to determine coverage and benefits.
Liability limits, deductibles, additional coverages and discounts can vary to meet your needs.
The scope of your insurance coverage and options depend entirely upon the policy and the insurance company providing it. This website is not intended to advise, offer or bind coverage. You should always discuss your insurance issues with professionals such as a licensed and qualified insurance agent like those at Ewing, Hines & Associates before making any decisions or choosing a course of action.