Disability coverage might not seem like a necessity, especially while you are young and relatively healthy. But it’s actually more important than you might think!
What most of us don’t realize about disability insurance is that it’s not a replacement for worker’s compensation. Even if you are covered by worker’s comp with your employer, that doesn’t mean you’ll be fully supported if you are suddenly injured and unable to work.
Most worker’s comp schemes only cover injuries that happen in the workplace. So, if you get hurt anywhere else, get sick, or have a mental health disability, you probably won’t receive financial support from your employer. Unless you have a significant emergency fund saved up, that could mean tough times until you’re able to work again.
That’s where disability insurance comes in. With the right coverage, you’ll be supported throughout your recovery, no matter how you were injured.
If you think disability insurance should be a part of your plan, read on. This article will take you through everything you need to know, including the 10 best disability insurance providers in 2021.
Best Insurance Companies Offering Disability Insurance
Everyone has their own unique needs, priorities, and budget. We can’t say which company will be the best insurance provider for you – but wecan tell you about some of the top-rated companies offering excellent disability coverage today.
All of these 10 companies have affordable, accessible insurance plans to make sure your needs are met if you’re ever out of work due to an injury.
MassMutual is a well-established insurance company with an A+ rating from AM Best. They’re at the top of this list because they offer flexible, customizable disability coverage to meet anyone’s needs.
With MassMutual, you’ll have 45-60% of your income covered in the case of a disability. Benefit periods can range from 2 up to 10 years, making them a great choice for long term coverage.
You can also opt-in for their retirement protection plan, so you don’t lose traction on your retirement savings while you’re recovering.
It’s important to note that MassMutual defines a disability as something that prevents you from working in your career, trade, or field. So, you won’t be denied coverage if you can still work in another, lower-paying job.
2. Mutual of Omaha
Another popular and well-established insurance company, Mutual of Omaha offers amazing short term and long term disability coverage. Their plans are structured to be customizable and accessible, so that anyone can get the coverage they need.
Short term coverage with Mutual of Omaha comes with a benefit period of up to 2 years, with no elimination period in some cases. Long term coverage can range from 2 years to retirement age (67), with an elimination period of 60 to 365 days.
You can also choose from multiple add-ons for your long term insurance, including a critical illness rider, which will pay a flat benefit if you’re ever diagnosed with a critical disease.
On top of all that Mutual of Omaha also offers partial disability insurance, to cover the gap in your income if you’re restricted to working part-time because of your disability.
Assurity, a trusted insurance company with more than 120 years of experience, offers tons of options for short term and long term disability coverage.
They’re one of the most flexible companies on this list: you can customize your benefit period and elimination period with most plans. Generally, Assurity will cover 60% of your income while you’re out of work.
They also offer partial coverage for people who have had their work hours reduced to part-time.
Best of all, Assurity’s disability insurance is highly affordable. Their plans cost between 1-3% of your annual income – totally worth it to be prepared for anything!
A little less conventional than some of the companies I’ve already mentioned, Breeze is an online insurance firm that aims to make insurance accessible for everyone.
Applying for disability insurance with Breeze takes less than 15 minutes. They offer long term plans for anyone age 18 – 60, or flat-rate coverage of $500 – $20,000. It’s an easy, affordable way to give yourself peace of mind for years.
You can also add tons of riders onto your disability insurance plans with Breeze, including critical illness, catastrophic disability, and guaranteed insurability.
5. Guardian Life
Guardian Life is one of the biggest insurance companies in the nation, with more than 58 agencies in this country and even more worldwide.
But that doesn’t mean you’re just another number to them: this company offers accessible, unique disability plans tailored to each individual or company’s needs. They do supply short term plans through employers, but they also offer supplemental insurance for people who need more support.
As an individual, you can buy a short or long term plan with Guardian Life. Your plan will also stay with you when you change jobs – so you’ll never have to worry about your employer-sponsored coverage not being sufficient.
6. Illinois Mutual
Illinois Mutual is regarded as one of the best companies out there for long term disability insurance.
The coolest part about their policies is the optional Return of Premium rider, which can refund the amount you paid in premiums if you never have to use the policy. They also offer a retroactive injury rider that ensures your disability coverage if a serious disability becomes apparent within 30 days of your initial injury.
Alongside their long term plans, Illinois Mutual also offers customizable short term plans for a low monthly premium.
Don’t get employer-sponsored coverage because you are your own employer? They offer steep discounts for small business owners.
7. Principal Financial Group
Principal Financial Group has been around for well over 100 years, and has won several awards for their quality service.
Their individual disability income insurance can be bought as a part of an employee benefit plan, or as an individual. That means you’re covered even if you change jobs or become self-employed. The elimination period on their short term plans is only 8 days, which is great if you need your coverage fast.
One of the reasons people love Principal as an insurance provider is that their disability plans are a lot less restrictive than some others. Full benefits are available to people who work at least 20 hours per week.
They can also help you stay on track for retirement with their Retirement Savings Plan.
Ameritas is another great option for someone looking for a flexible disability insurance plan. You can add different riders to customize your plan according to your priorities and budget. You’ll also get to choose your own benefit period and elimination period.
Ameritas offers a Foundational and a Fundamental policy. The Fundamental policy is the more affordable of the two, and will pay out a lump sum if you’re out of work for at least a year due to a disability.
The Foundational policy comes with plenty of built-in benefits and optional add-ons. It’s a little pricier, but the monthly premium is still affordable – about the price of your internet bill. If you’re looking for comprehensive, long term coverage, this is the way to go.
9. Fidelity Securities
A popular choice for life and disability insurance, Fidelity Securities offers a unique bundled option for people who want to simplify their insurance options.
The Life and Disability package offers graded benefits for disability: that means that benefits will grow over time. It’s a great option for someone with a pre-existing health condition, who other insurance companies might consider high risk.
They also offer a variety of customizable long term and short term disability plans for individuals.
10. The Standard
The Standard offers short term and long term disability coverage for people of all ages and abilities. Their plans cover up to 70% of your income, and are flexible to account for everyone’s unique needs.
Their Whole Person plan is a unique option that offers more than just income coverage: they’ll connect you with rehabilitation services and work accommodation experts to get you back to work as soon as possible.
You can also choose the family care benefit, to help support your family while you’re on the road to recovery. Or, if you have a student loan, sign up for the optional student loan rider to keep up with your payments even if you’re out of work.
Who should consider disability insurance?
Again, it’s easy to think you might not need disability insurance when you’re young and healthy. But the reality is, a serious disability could happen to anyone, at any stage of life.
In fact, around ¼ of 20-year-olds entering the workforce today can expect to be out of work for at least one year because of an injury or illness before they reach retirement age.
It’s also important to note that “disability” in this context means anything that prevents you from working. That can include issues related to pregnancy and childbirth, digestive disorders, or mental health challenges like anxiety and depression.
To sum it up, everyone should consider disability insurance. It’s better to be prepared for every situation than to struggle when you suddenly lose your income.
Types of disability insurance
When you’re looking for the best disability coverage, you have tons of options. There are a few different kinds of disability insurance plans you can buy.
Short term disability insurance is the kind that companies often supply their employers. It generally covers your income in the case of an injury or illness for 3 to 6 months; sometimes up to a year.
Long term disability insurance can last for at least 2 years, or all the way until retirement age, depending on the provider and circumstances.
Mortgage disability insurance is a special plan that will help you make your mortgage payments if you lose your income because of a disability.
Supplemental disability insurance is for people who have coverage from their employer, but still aren’t having their financial needs met. Supplemental insurance will fill the gap to fully support you through your recovery.
Of course, every insurance provider offers different plans with different terms. A lot of those plans also come with customizable features and add-ons to tailor the benefits to your needs.
For the details of what to expect from a certain type of plan, you should get in touch with a representative of the top insurance company you want to work with.
Important terms to know
Before you start shopping for the right disability insurance plan for you, there are a few terms and phrases you should know.
Most plans, especially long term, will come with an elimination period: a set number of days after the injury or illness occurs, before the benefits kick in. This waiting period might seem annoying, but it’s how the company makes sure you really need long term coverage for your disability.
The benefit period is the amount of time you will be covered for. Some companies offer customizable benefit periods, so you can choose how long your coverage will last when you buy the plan.
A lump sum is another pay-out option: instead of receiving continuous income support, you’ll get a one-time payment to support you over time. These plans are generally more affordable, but less comprehensive. The lump sum might not cover all of your needs, depending on the severity of your disability.
Choosing the best disability insurance for you
It’s hard to imagine needing disability insurance. Most of us feel like we’ll be able to keep working no matter what happens.
Unfortunately, accidents, illness, and other events can change that. The way I see it, it’s always better to be safe than sorry. Disability insurance is an affordable, easy way to make sure your prepared just in case the worst happens.
All the companies on this list offer awesome disability coverage with flexible features. If you want to choose the best plan for you, just consider your budget and priorities. You can always get in touch with a representative at any of these trustworthy companies to learn more, with no obligation or pressure to buy.
A comprehensive disability insurance plan is more accessible than you might think! Find the best plan for you, and you’ll never have to worry about losing your income if you’re suddenly out of work.