Disability Insurance – What You Need to Know

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Disability Insurance

If you’re like I used to be, you probably only think you need disability insurance if you have a job with a high injury risk, like construction. For years, I was convinced that this was the only need for disability insurance until I became a financial advisor and realized that disability insurance is so much more than coverage for a worker’s comp event.

I have had a number of people ask me about this topic recently, so I recruited my friend, Jennifer Fitzgerald from Policy Genius to come on the show and talk about the importance of disability insurance as part of your financial plan. If you haven’t checked out Policy Genius, it’s one of my favorite sites for searching for and comparing insurance policies; and I send a number of clients there to research their options. If you want to look into disability insurance after hearing this podcast, you can research it at Policy Genius.

What are we drinking?

Jen – Irish Coffee

Shannon – Vodka, Soda, Splash of Cranberry

Podcast Notes:

  • Disability insurance has a misleading name. In other markets, disability insurance is called “income protection”
  • Work related injuries only make up about 10% of long term disability claims
  • I talked about my client who had a detached retina and needed to draw on disability insurance. You can read more of her story here.
  • Jen talks about what type of disability coverage a company might provide for it’s employees
  • Jen explains how people can find out if they are covered by their employer and questions you should ask your benefits manager specifically around disability coverage
  • As a reminder, pre-existing conditions will not be covered under a new disability insurance policy, but many other conditions can and will get covered
  • Jen discusses the best way to shop for and compare disability insurance coverage
  • Jen explains the costs of disability insurance and why it usually costs more for women than men
  • Jen shares what two areas of your disability coverage you can balance in order to get your costs lower
  • Jen talks about what you can expect if you apply for disability through social security

Random 3 Questions Jen Answered:

  1. What is a country you’ve never visited but would love to?
  2. Are you a dessert or appetizer person?
  3. What is your favorite movie?

*This post contains affiliate links. You can find more on affiliate links on my disclosure page.

Do you have disability insurance? Would your financial situation suffer if you lost your income for six months or longer?
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Shannon is a financial planner who left a “traditional” financial services firm to start her own company, The Financial Gym, because she felt traditional financial services firms did not have the tools or resources to help people in their 20s and 30s who are starting out and trying to build assets while also managing debt. She realized that the key to long-term personal financial success is a commitment to financial fitness and making smart financial choices. Through her blog, Financially Blonde, her book, Train Your Way To Financial Fitness, her podcast, Martinis and Your Money and The Financial Gym, Shannon is committed to making financial fitness fun, easy and accessible for everyone.


  1. Great topic. I’m still in the process of getting life insurance, but disability insurance is something I would consider adding as well. I did purchase some additional disability insurance at work (on top of what you get by default). It’s nice to know I have some protection in case something happens.

  2. I see disability insurance as something that is important for everyone, but especially for any females who are considering starting a family. Short-term disability can help make up for the loss of pay during maternity leave.

  3. Unfortunately, I can’t get disability insurance that’s worthwhile. I have a pretty understanding boss, and I work from home. So not too many injuries would lay me up for a short period. And since I’ve been on SSA disability in the past, companies aren’t too keen to insure me. (Go figure.)

    I’d have to pay a fair amount for regular insurance, and I couldn’t get “in kind” work coverage. This is pretty much the only kind of work I can do. But to an outside observer, like a claims adjuster, it’d seem like I could do some work. (Yay invisible illness.) So the company would never pay on a claim unless I went blind or something like that. It just didn’t make sense for me.

    That said, I think most people should really look into this. They can get good rates and, trust me, you never know when illness or injury can struck.

  4. Disability insurance is something I overlooked and I need to consider now because I realized that it is really important to have this kind of insurance and something can back me up in case I get injured. Thanks to your podcast.

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