What is disability insurance and where can I get it?
Disability can occur at any time. While many people take their body and health for granted, serious accident or injury can happen to anyone and if you find yourself disable, for a short period or long term, how will you pay your bills?
Disability insurance is a insurance coverage that will provide you with income replacement should you become disabled and thus unable to continue earning a living. If this were to happen to you, do you know what you or your family would do for income?
If you are aged 40, there is a higher chance that you will be disabled, and thus unable to work for a period of 90 days or more, than of you dying before the age of 65. There are three common ways of insuring against this risk.
Employer Benefit Plan
The first is to receive insurance from your employer. It comes as a form of short or long term paid sick leave. Larger employers can have even more generous terms. For example, a common policy might offer you 60% of your salary for five years, or maybe even all the way up to retirement. While not everyone is lucky enough to work for such a company, it is worth checking with your employer to find out what your protection is and whether or not its something you wish to provide for yourself.
Long Term Disability
The second common protection against this type of risk is CPP disability and WSIB. This usually only covers employees whose disability lasts for a period of 12 months or more. It also must be shown to be so severe that you cannot find gainful employment. Therefore there are some gaps here that you may be more comfortable providing for with private insurance.
The third method of dealing with this risk is with an individual disability insurance policy. This means taking out a private insurance policy yourself. You should shop around to make sure you get the best deal available, but at least you will have the peace of mind of knowing in what circumstances you are covered and what the terms of the policy cover.
There are some other sources of disability protection. WSIB will sometimes step in to cover you if the injury occurred at work. Your auto insurance may provide coverage if the injury occurred in a car accident and the Department of Veteran’s Affairs can advise you if you think the disability is related to service in the armed forces.
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