Is Group Insurance the Best Disability Insurance for Doctors?
Understanding Disability Insurance for Physicians
At the beginning of a physician’s career, outstanding debt often matches or surpasses income. While most physicians worry more about paying off that debt rather than incurring another expense, no doctor should be without disability insurance.
Many young doctors are employed at hospitals or clinics offering group insurance at a reduced cost, or free of charge, and most jump at this opportunity and feel they are protected. Unfortunately, these plans often offer inadequate coverage and leave physicians stuck in a precarious financial situation in the event that disability insurance needs to be utilized. By learning and understanding the complexities and pitfalls of group or employer-offered insurance, physicians will be able to make a conscious decision about their disability insurance and protect their investment.
Base Salary Only
Group disability insurance is often based solely on your base monthly salary. Bonuses, commissions, retirement contributions, or other forms of monetary benefits are not included in determining the amount of benefits you receive monthly.
When a claim is filed for group disability insurance, the claimant is often shocked at how “disability” is defined. The claimant may be told he or she must be unable to perform any form of work in order for a disability to be covered, and the monthly benefit may be capped at a rate much lower than what monthly earnings actually are.
Group insurance may not begin coverage as early as anticipated, often taking 90 consecutive days from the time of the disability to the first payoff.
Group disability insurance is generally tied to your employer’s plan. When you change from one hospital to a clinic or another hospital — or if your position is downsized — the insurance does not follow you.
Reduction of Benefits
If you choose to collect Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) in conjunction with group disability insurance, your group benefits may diminish by every dollar received through SSDI.
Group policies are typically not underwritten, meaning experts have not scrutinized all risks associated with each policy to offer an appropriate premium and more accurate fees.
Your group insurance premiums may be inexpensive or free the first year or two but can change any time your insurer necessitates it. Group insurance rates are not guaranteed, meaning premiums can change; generally, these changes are not to your benefit.
Group insurance often leaves you with inadequate coverage. With individual insurance, your plan is underwritten to your needs. Doctor Insurance Group will not only walk you through the underwriting process but will also compare carriers and provide a written analysis — all at no extra cost.
Take a closer look at your group disability insurance plan if you have one. Determine whether it is short-term or long-term, then peruse your insurance plan with a representative from Doctor Insurance Group. We can help you locate the best individual disability insurance for your family and your life. We can assist you in finding the best coverage, at the lowest prices.
To speak to one of our True Own Speciality Disability insurance coverage specialists, give us a call at 800-997-0148 or