If you are a doctor, you may never have felt the need to buy disability insurance. But, just like any professional, you need income protection in case you are unable to continue working for some reason. The pandemic has shown how an incredible number of healthcare workers have been forced to stay at home for months.
8 important things that a doctor needs to find out when buying physicians disability insurance:
Buying healthcare professionals disability insurance is not going to be easy, even when options are overwhelming. More options mean more choices but it also makes it harder for one to decide. A disability insurance broker can help you make the right choice and negotiate with insurers to offer you the best deals. On your part, you need to look into the following:
- Where to buy disability insurance from: You should buy from an independent broker working with physicians. Such a professional is not tied to any insurance company; so, he can offer you quotes from the big insurers. It is advisable to get different quotes from different disability insurance brokers in order to get the best product.
- Know what disability insurance means: Not every disability insurance policy is the same. There will be eligibility criteria for you to get benefits. You need to find out what happens if you can only do a part of the job after becoming disabled. For instance, many policies need you to be bedridden to qualify for benefits. Ideally, you should seek a solution which safeguards you against any type of disability. So, if you cannot perform your job, whether in part or full, you should be entitled to coverage.
- How to buy insurance: To buy a policy, you need to obtain quotes from various brokers. It is their duty to fetch you the best rates. It is best to approach at least three brokers and update them with your medical history.
- When to buy disability insurance: Even if you do not have any medical issues, you need to get this coverage before becoming disabled. The coronavirus has shown us how unpredictable life can be and the importance of having income protection. You should buy a policy when you are in a position to make monthly payments. With underlying medical conditions, a policy will cost you more.
- How much disability insurance coverage is right for you: The purpose of this coverage is to replace your existing income. When your spouse is earning you may not have to replace the entire income. But to replace your whole income, you must combine a group policy from your employer and an individual disability policy.
- Is a group policy enough: A group policy may not prove to be enough because it rarely replaces your existing income. Moreover, such a policy defines disability in much narrower terms than personal disability coverage. So, when you get money from some other source, that is deducted from benefits.
- How long it takes for LTD to start: Long-term disability does not get activated right away. It depends on the product but it usually requires 90 days to start. To provide for income for the time before that, it may be wise to purchase short-term disability insurance.
- When is it right to terminate the policy: Having this policy is a must until you are able to self-insure. When you are financially independent, you can think of doing away with disability insurance.
These are some of the important questions which doctors need to ask before deciding on disability insurance.