Nearly 80 percent of Americans said that they had at least two types of insurance when it came to health, home and auto policies. However, only about 35 percent reported having disability insurance from an employer. This finding was from a survey conducted by the Harris Poll for OneAmerica. The survey included more than 2,100 Americans who were 18 years of age or older. Of the participants who did not have disability insurance from an employer, more than 40 percent said that employers did not offer it. About 15 percent said that they did not have it because they could not afford the cost, and they felt that other living expenses were higher priorities.
OneAmerica is using this survey's results to help emphasize the importance of disability insurance. People are quick to insure their homes, cars and health but do not think about the possibility of a permanent or temporary disability. More than 25 percent of young working people will experience a disability before they turn 65, and many of these individuals will suffer from a permanent disability. Government income for disabled individuals does not replace a previous salary before the disability happened. Most people have increasing medical costs in addition to their everyday living costs, and this puts a strain on themselves and their families.
Also, OneAmerica hopes to highlight the importance of employers offering disability insurance as part of the company's benefits package. Some workers can be retrained for other positions if a partial disability prevents them from returning to a previous position. If workers know this and have income while they are recovering and getting therapy, they may be more likely to return to work if they are able. Adding disability insurance shows that a company cares about the well-being of its workers, which speaks volumes to top talent about the company's values.
The survey also found that only about 20 percent of workers who had an annual household income below $50,000 were offered disability coverage by an employer. Nearly 35 percent of women who were between the ages of 18 and 34 did not accept an employer's disability coverage because they felt that they did not need it. However, most women did not realize that disability insurance could benefit them for issues during maternity leave.
Experts concluded that disability insurance is a must for employees of all ages. When a worker is injured and sustains a temporary or permanent disability, the insurance kicks in after several weeks to provide income replacement at a rate that is more sufficient than government benefits. Sick time and paid time off do not usually suffice for an employee who needs a considerable amount of time off because of a disability. However, most employees assume that any injury will heal within the time allowed by their PTO and sick time. Employees should check with their HR department about this important and affordable coverage. For employers considering this coverage for an enhanced benefits package, give us a call to discuss the advantages.