Disability Insurance for General Practitioners

If you are the primary breadwinner for your family, the chances of becoming disabled are too great a risk to be ignored. More than most, physicians especially are aware of the damaging effect disability can have on their medical profession and their income. According to a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the most common type of disability is mobility disability, which alone affects at least 1 in 7 American adults. Some of the consequences of a mobility impairment include loss of income, economic hardship, and a barrier to skill development.

General practitioners are skillful medical caregivers that provide up-to-date and continuing medical care to patients in the community. They are invaluable to the overall welfare of their patients and, as a result, are well compensated for their hard work. As such, they should include disability insurance into their financial plan. Not only is it prudent, but you enjoy the peace that comes from within knowing that your income is covered even when a disability strikes.

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Why Do General Practitioners Need Disability Insurance?

People often tend to downplay the impact or probability of disability in order to justify avoiding the subject. The Council of Disability Awareness (CDA) revealed that the chances of people becoming disabled are on the rise. The CDA’s study shows that one in every four 20-years-old Americans is at risk of becoming disabled before reaching the age of 65. Factors contributing to becoming disabled are also increasing. As a general practitioner, you’re well aware of the prevalence of illnesses such as cancer, heart diseases, back injuries, and host of other debilitating diseases in society. You have also seen how illnesses have the potential to negatively impact the livelihoods of your patients. As such, general practitioners should consider getting their most valuable asset, their ability to work, insured.

The rate of unemployment and economic insecurity among people living with a disability is on the rise. People with disabilities are generally faced with the challenge of securing employment and meaningful work. In 2018, the Brookings Analysis revealed that six out of ten people with a disability are unemployed. The sad outcome of this has often resulted in severe financial hardship such as bankruptcy, foreclosure, or even debilitating mental conditions such as anxiety and depression. The good news is that you can avoid such consequences when you own disability insurance coverage.

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What Kind of Disability Insurance Policies are Available to General Practitioners?

Disability insurance policies are available for every physician either as a private practitioner or practicing in a hospital. Generally, the two types of disability insurance policies are short-term and long-term disability insurance.

Shortterm disability insurance (STDI) provides temporary disability benefits that last for a period of 3 to 12 months after the elimination period has passed. It can be bought through an employer or from a private insurance company. Many have found STDI to be the most affordable policy due to its low-cost premium rate. Depending on the premium rate, your benefit can equal between 40% to 60% of your income.

Either purchased through an employer or private insurance policy giver, longterm disability insurance (LTDI) provides payouts for an extended time after a specified elimination period. Depending on the plan, the period for payouts is between 2 to 5 years or until you turn 65.

What Should General Practitioners Look for When Buying Disability Insurance Policy?

In your quest to find the right policy, you may likely find it confusing and time-consuming, especially considering your profession as a general practitioner. Fortunately, some pointers can direct you to make the best choice. Here are some of them:

Do your homework first

Disability insurance policies can be a complex subject for those new to the industry. Your research should include the type of policy that will work for you based on your income and needs. Other essential things to find out is where to buy your policy from and how much coverage you’ll need. Working with an experienced insurance agent will make your research much easier.

Buy before you need it

You don’t have to wait until you need disability insurance before getting covered—in fact, by then, it’s too late. Among other things, insurance companies are interested in your age to determine your premium rate. The younger you are, the cheaper your premium. Therefore, the best time to get covered is at the earliest stage of your career, which gives you an edge over your premium rate.

Look out for policies with the following riders

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For general practitioner, certain policy riders provide you with additional benefits that are the best fit for your medical specialty. These include:

Non-Cancelable and guaranteed renewable policies

Non-cancelable and guaranteed renewable are some of the best types of policies that provide adequate protection for general practitioners. For non-cancelable, once you sign up for this policy, your coverage is guaranteed. Your insurer has no power to cancel or change either your premium rate or your underwriting as long as you continue to pay premiums. For guaranteed renewable, the insurer can only revise your premium rate with the approval of the state’s insurance department and by a class of the insured. This does not occur often.

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Residual or partial disability rider:

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Cost of living adjustment (COLA) rider

This addition to your policy gives you purchasing power against inflation. With COLA, your disability benefits are adjusted (increased) for inflation after 12 months of being disabled. Otherwise, payouts remain the same.

Future increase option rider

With a residual or partial disability rider, your payment is ensured when your disability limits your earning power.

How Gold Coast Life Insurance Can Help

Getting disability insurance for general practitioners has never been easier. At Gold Coast Life Insurance, we take it upon ourselves to help you get the most out of your investment. We will guide you on the right policy for general practitioners.

We accept high-risk clients as well as people with pre-existing conditions, and no medical exam is required! Experience the long-term benefit of protecting your most valued asset by taking advantage of our free quote.

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