Short Term Disability
In its simplest terms, Short-Term Disability is insurance that insures your paycheck.
People insure their homes, their cars, their life, so you should also insure your most important asset which is your ability to earn an income. Disability insurance has different benefit levels, as well as different options on how quickly it starts paying and for how long it pays out.
Why should someone get a short-term disability policy? According to the Council for Disability Awareness, 1 in 4 workers will experience a period of disability before they retire. On top of that, 46% of Americans wouldn’t be able to cover a $400 emergency expense without resorting to credit card debt or a family loan. If you were unable to work due to a short medical emergency, how would you pay your bills?
It’s a common misconception that disabilities only occur because of workplace accidents; in fact, most disabilities are caused by off the job accidents and illnesses.
Short-term disability insurance provides a Benefit Period of disability typically lasting either three or six months, depending on individual’s needs. The life of the benefit term will be determined by the premium you pay. The longer the benefit term, the higher the premium will be.
The policy pays up to 60% of your total gross income in disability payments.
Definition of Disability
The American National definition of their short-term disability policy, is that if you are unable to perform duties of your current job, due to off-the-job disability, then you would be eligible for benefits.
An individual may qualify for up to $1,500 per month in disability payments. Some may choose lessor amounts to keep it more affordable. Likewise, someone may choose benefits up to $5,000 per month. Any amount over $1,500, will be Simplified Issue meaning there are three basic health questions and qualifications required. In other words, it is much easier to medically qualify for a Simplified Issue policy versus a fully underwritten policy.
Participants must be working and having income. Income may be from a variety of sources though such as: W-2 income, 1099 income, or combination of full-time and part-time jobs or any other source which would be considered income.
Benefit amounts will be up to 60% of the individual’s gross income. The plan offers different Elimination Periods of 0/7, 0/14 and 0/30. The first number of let’s say 0/14, represents the Elimination Period for any off-the-job accidents. So, in this case 0 means there is no Elimination Period, or Waiting Period, and the benefits start paying out the first day someone misses work due to an off-the-job accident. The 14 represents how many work days, (calendar days), must be missed due to an illness before the plan starts paying.
For example: For a 0/14 Elimination Period, someone contracts pneumonia and misses 6 weeks of work. The payout would be for 6 weeks minus the 14-day Elimination Period which equals 4 weeks of which benefits will be paid out.
Elimination Period – How quickly the plan starts paying in event of disability.
Benefit Period – How long the disability plan will pay out in the event of disability.
In choosing the best Elimination Period for you, think about how long you can go without a paycheck. If you can afford to miss two weeks of pay, but nothing more, then the 14-day Elimination Period might be better suited for you. If you can make it a month, then perhaps the 30-day Elimination Period would be better suited for you.
Keep in mind, the quicker the plan starts paying the more expensive it will be.
One of the benefits of the short-term disability plan is that it also covers taking time off for childbirth. As long as the plan has been in force for 10 months, then the plan would cover up to six weeks of time off for a normal delivery. If a C-Section is medically required, then it will pay eight weeks of missed work. If individual to be covered is currently pregnant at the effective date of policy, and there is a medical need for C-Section, then policy will pay as a normal sickness. So, if you are planning to start a family, or add to your family, then the short-term disability plan is great for you and will help pay for the many new baby expenses you are sure to have.
(Each claim must be an approved claim following Exemptions Guidelines attached)
- Individual must work a minimum of 20 hours per week.
- Eligible to receive up to 60% of individual’s income.
Ages Accepted: 18 - 64
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