When it comes to suffering a disability, we all tend to think that “It can’t happen to me!” In fact, when assessing their own chances of becoming disabled, most people believe their odds of becoming disabled for at least 3 months are 1%.1
News Flash:More than 25% of today’s 20-year-olds will become disabled before they retire.2
News Flash: Approximately every 7seconds, a working-age American suffers a disabling injury or illness that will last for at least one month. 3
News Flash:61 million adults in the United States live with a disability.4
Another major misconception is the primary cause of disabilities. Believe it or not, injuries (fractures, sprains, and strains of muscles and ligaments) make up only 7.5% of all short-term disability claims. 5
Most individuals are covered in the event of a job-related disability and they believe that this provides sufficient coverage... right? Wrong! 90% of long-term disability claims are not work related.6
Another common misunderstanding is that Social Security Disability (SSDI) benefits will be sufficient to replace income in the event of your disability. The truth is the average monthly SSDI benefit received in 2021 is $1,277.7 The amount of your monthly SSDI benefit is based on your lifetime average earnings covered by Social Security. The truth is, nationwide, about 65% of all disability claims are denied on the first application filed with the Social Security Administration.8 The truth is SSDI is only available to those who can’t work due to a severe medical condition that has lasted, or is expected to last, at least one year or result in death. The person's medical condition(s) must prevent them from doing work that they did in the past, and it must prevent them from adjusting to other work.7
So why are there so many misconceptions about disability and disability income? I believe it is simply a lack of awareness and education. Think about it for a moment:
Was this something that was taught is school? Have you educated your own children on the threat of disability? Or is this just something we assume everyone should know—including our children and grandchildren?
- Do you have plan is in place to protect or replace your income in the event of a disability?
- Do your children have a plan is place to protect or replace their income in the event of disability?
- Do your grandchildren have a plan is place to protect or replace their income in the event of disability?
Astonishingly, 68% of U.S. employees lack disability insurance!7 What is their plan to protect or replace their income? It can’t be savings. 78% of Americans live paycheck to paycheck.9 So what is their fallback plan? I fear it hinges on one of those “misconceptions” about disability income.
I encourage you to not only look at your disability income plan, but to educate your children and grandchildren about the potential threat of disability and how it could affect their income and their future.
For more information about disability insurance, please give us a call.
- Council for Disability Awareness Employer Disability Awareness Study
- U.S. Social Security Administration, Fact Sheet
- America’s Disability Counter, DisabilityCounter.org
- Integrated Benefits Institute