Sometimes, life throws you a curveball. You might be working with a company that provides you with a stable income but suddenly find yourself unable to continue the job.
Maybe you got sick. Perhaps you got hurt. Regardless of what happened, you might be considering disability insurance. However, which type of disability insurance should you get?
There are three types of disability insurance to consider, but their main goal is the same. Long-term, short-term, and Social Security disability insurance all seek to replace a portion of your monthly income if your injury or illness prevents you from working.
This type of coverage can be very beneficial if you’re the primary breadwinner in your household and your family depends on your income. However, disability insurance is also beneficial if you only support yourself.
Even though you no longer work, your bills won’t stop, so it’s important to have a monthly income to help keep you afloat no matter your household situation. Long-term, short-term, and Social Security disability insurance will provide this help to you, regardless of the one you choose.
But while each type of disability coverage achieves the same goal, there are slight differences between them. And knowing those differences can help you determine which type of disability insurance is best for you.
The differences between long-term vs. short-term vs. Social Security disability insurance
Long-term, short-term, and Social Security disability insurance are three types of coverage that you’ll need to consider. There are a few differences between them, and the differences are straightforward. Here’s what you need to know.
1. Long-term Disability Insurance
If a disability impacts you for an extended period of time, then long-term disability insurance is the right type of coverage for you.
It will cover any serious illness or injury that prevents or prohibits you from working for several months or even years. And if you find that you’re permanently unable to work, long-term disability insurance will cover you in that scenario, too.
It will typically replace 60 to 80 percent of your pre-disability income. Still, some policies will replace your entire income if you have to take a lower-paying job because of your disability.
What’s also critical to know is that your benefits will only end is if you’ve recovered from a disability during a maximum benefit period. This period may be set to a couple of years, a decade, or last up to the age of 65. It’ll just depend on the specific disability that’s impacting you.
2. Short-term Disability Insurance
Short-term disability insurance is exactly what it sounds like—it covers temporary illnesses or injuries you’re experiencing.
This type of coverage will usually replace about 40 to 60 percent of your income, and it will generally begin 14 days after you become injured or ill. Your benefits will last for around three to six months. However, some policies will cover you for as long as two years. Again, it just depends on the injury or illness that’s affecting you.
3. Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)
This type of coverage is a little different than long-term and short-term disability insurance, mainly because it’s a government program that the Social Security Administration created.
Social Security disability insurance will still provide benefits if you become too injured or ill to work. However, you might find that it’s challenging to qualify for Social Security disability insurance. If you want this type of coverage, you’ll need to meet the following criteria:
- You need to have worked in jobs that the Social Security covers
- You must have worked at those jobs long enough and recently enough.
- Your physical or medical condition must align with Social Security’s definition of a disability
- Your physical or medical condition must significantly restrict your ability to do basic activities, like standing, lifting, walking, remembering, or sitting.
- Your illness or injury must prevent you from working for a year or more.
There are some exceptions that will help you get Social Security disability insurance. For example, if you can return to work or find other employment, Social Security will give you that opportunity as long as you’re not engaging in “substantial gainful activity.”
In 2020, Social Security defined this term as earning more than $1,260 per month or $2,110 if you’re blind. If your monthly income surpasses that number, your Social Security disability insurance will end.
What will a disability insurance plan cover?
Regardless of the type of coverage that you choose, short-term, long-term, and Social Security disability insurance all have something in common. They tend to cover similar injuries and illnesses.
But those injuries and illnesses must be considered a disability. You might’ve heard many different things about what does and doesn’t qualify with insurance companies and Social Security. For instance, many people think congenital disabilities and conditions that happen because of a tragic accident are the only instances where you can get coverage.
While these do make the list, there are many other types of disabilities, and they’re more common than you might think. Here’s a broad list of conditions that you can find coverage for:
- Back pain
- Heart disease
If you’re affected by one or more of these conditions, you can start to seriously consider disability insurance.
The criteria for long-term vs. short-term vs. Social Security disability insurance
What if you don’t currently have a disability but still want to get disability insurance? Well, in this case, companies will assess your risk of becoming disabled to determine the best policy for you and how much you’ll pay for coverage.
It’s important to keep in mind, however, that you may not qualify for Social Security disability insurance since you’re taking a more proactive measure, and the program is for those who already have a disability.
But that fact shouldn’t keep you from getting disability insurance through a reputable company. If you decide to take this step, insurance agents will usually refer to the following factors to discern which policy and rate to offer:
- Your gender
- Your age
- Your health history
- Your location
- Your job
- Your annual income
After reviewing these criteria, good insurance companies will suggest a policy that works best for you. However, there are many “good” insurance companies in the industry, and you need to make sure you’re buying disability coverage from the right one.
How to get the best disability insurance for you
Unfortunately, some insurance companies will recommend policies that don’t benefit you. For example, many businesses in the industry will require you to pay high premiums that don’t justify the benefits you receive.
For this reason, it’s essential to choose the right insurance company if you’re looking for long-term or short-term disability insurance instead of Social Security disability coverage. Luckily, Barry Risk Management, Inc. can provide the best policies and rates for your needs.
Our parent company is Barry Risk Management. And the business specializes in helping you find and purchase the proper coverage for all of your everyday essentials. With the guidance and expertise of Barry Risk Management, you can trust Barry Risk Management, Inc. to find the best disability insurance for you.
The representatives at Barry Risk Management, Inc. are knowledgeable, helpful, and keen on getting you the best deal possible. So, don’t risk wasting your time on an insurance company that won’t provide you with a policy that you need.
For long-term and short-term disability insurance policies, contact Barry Risk Management, Inc. today to find what you need!