When reviewing your disability insurance options, you should be sure to understand the differences between company contracts. With life insurance, you are either dead or not dead and a claim is paid if you die. With disability insurance, the key to the contract is the definition of disability and definition and requirements of the policy benefits. All disability contracts are NOT created equal.
Our #1 disability insurance company, and the top disability company in the entire industry, is Guardian. Guardian has the best definition of disability and the best contract terms of any company. The following are some of the benefits that Guardian offers and other companies do not:
The best definition of disability, period. Generally, the more language included in a definition, the less likely a company is to pay a claim. Guardian’s definition of disability is as follows:
“Total Disability or Totally Disabled means that, solely due to Injury or Sickness, You are not able to perform the material and substantial duties of Your Occupation. You will be Totally Disabled even if You are Gainfully Employed in another occupation so long as, solely due toInjury or Sickness, You are not able to work in Your Occupation. Working an average of more than 40 hours in a week, in itself, is not a material and substantial duty”
Guardian includes a specialty definition for physicians and dentists that says their specific specialty to be defined as their occupation. Other companies do not offer a specialty definition. The specialty definition is as follows:
“If You have limited Your Occupation to the performance of the material and substantial duties of a single medical specialty or to a single dental specialty, We will deem that specialty to be Your Occupation.”
- An A++ financial rating from A.M. Best, the highest rating available.
- True “own occupation” definition with specialty definition for medical and dental specialists
- Guardian contracts are guaranteed renewable and non-cancellable as a standard benefit. This means the premiums and contract terms are fixed and guaranteed for the full benefit period.
- Guardian requires only a 15% loss of income to trigger the residual benefit and pays a dollar-for-dollar benefit on lost income for the first 12 months. Guardian does not require any loss of time or duties to pay residual benefits
- Different periods of disability count towards the elimination period whether from the same or different disabilities.
- Elimination period is waived for 5 years after the end of the previous disability as long as the disability lasted for more than 6 months and they paid benefits for the disability. The second disability can be related or unrelated.
- Premiums are waived during disability and for six months after the disability ends.
- Cost of living adjustment increases are a fixed 3%, not tied to the CPI. For recoveries that occur prior to age 60, the amount to which benefits have increased becomes locked in as part of the base benefit with no additional premium required.
- Automatic benefit increases of 4% compounded each year are included for five years regardless of change in health, occupation, or income.
- Waiver of premium for up to 12 months for unemployment
- Guaranteed future insurability for up to 2x/ monthly benefit for most occupations, up to 3x for medical school residents.
- Mental/nervous disorder benefits paid for the full benefit period for most occupations (some state exceptions)
- Coverage available to protect retirement contributions
- Coverage available to pay benefits for life for total disability
If you would like a personalized quote for a Guardian disability policy, please complete the short form below. You can also call us at 1-800-571-2980 for immediate assistance or send us an e-mail at [email protected] 24 hours a day.