What is physician’s disability (own-occupation) insurance?
Disability insurance for physicians (commonly referred to as own occupation) is a type of insurance that protects a physician’s own specialty in the event of an injury or illness that causes them to become unable to work.
Disability coverage is often offered in a group plan for medical students which in most cases will not cover a physician‘s own occupation. You may be familiar with the term, own-occupation disability insurance – the question is if you know what it entails.
There are different types of occupational insurance offered by insurance companies. Unlike life insurance, disability insurance has additional riders to be aware of. WealthCare is here to help you understand all of the disability benefits while having access to the highest rated insurance companies with the lowest premiums.
With own-occupation disability insurance, professionals are fully protected when they become disabled or totally disabled during their working years. Simply, this means that physicians and insurance companies will sign a binding contract that states that the physician will be paid a monthly tax-free benefit in case they become disabled.
Before purchasing disability insurance coverage review all definitions such as:
- the own-occupation definition
- cost of living adjustment
- catastrophic disability
- residual disability
- partial disability
- any possible exclusions during the underwriting process
Depending on any current medical conditions or past medical history you may see an increased insurance cost or may only be able to receive a partial benefit from your long-term disability insurance.
How does own-occupation disability insurance work?
Own-occupation is a disability rider that will provide coverage for individuals who become disabled and unable to perform the material and substantial occupational duties they have been trained to perform. As a physician or dentist, it’s recommended to have an own-occupation individual disability policy.
This benefit is usually only offered through an individual policy and not offered through a group policy or any other type of group coverage. After you fulfill the waiting period on your policy you will begin receiving the benefit amount for the entire benefit period you selected.
What does it mean to be “disabled” in this context?
Even though the definition of disability may vary based on the region in question, it means the inability to perform tasks you are qualified for. It is important to review the disability plan offered by the disability insurance company to see what qualifies as disabled.
Own-occupation disability insurance is the most lenient type of policy, and also the one that best protects your income in case of a disability. It’s especially important to have if you carry student loan debt.
Dr. Clark is a surgeon who went on a trip and got involved in an accident that claimed his right eye. This disability made it impossible for him to perform operations.
Taking this into consideration, as a surgeon whose job is to perform operations and became disabled due to partial vision loss. If Dr. Clark has an own-occupation disability insurance policy in place, whether he desires to work in a different field or not, he will be covered.
Even though he can still function in other medical specialties or decide to start in an entirely different field, he will be paid his disability payments. Dr. Clark is now collecting his disability income while working at a pharmaceutical company.
What is the most important feature of disability insurance?
It’s unarguably true that own-occupation insurance is one of the most revered insurance policies for medical professionals in the marketplace. The benefits of this policy are incredible; whether you are gainfully employed or not, once you go on the claim and have insurance in place, you will be covered with the monthly disability payments.
It is simple for you as a physician; whether you decide to work in an entirely different business, you will receive the appropriate payment if you have an own-occupation disability policy in place. With a tax-free payment, you will get the full value of the benefit amount that comes with the policy if disabled for the entire benefit period.
There are 3 different variations of own-occupation disability insurance
- True own-occupation disability insurance
- Modified own-occupation disability insurance
- Transitional own-occupation disability insurance
True, modified, & transitional disability insurance
These variations depend on your choice of insurance coverage, and WealthCare will ensure you select the best for you based on your specialty. Here is a simple explanation of each:
True own-occupation disability insurance
Usually not offered through group disability insurance, this type of individual disability insurance specifies the full payment of monthly benefits, whether you are gainfully employed in a different line of work or not. (always recommended)
Modified own-occupation disability insurance
This version also pays benefits if you are unable to perform the duties of your current occupation. However, if you earn income from another occupation or source it can eliminate policy benefits meaning you will not receive full benefits.
Transitional own-occupation disability insurance
This coverage has an adjusted benefit. This type of policy considers your earnings from the job you take while disabled. While you’re eligible to continue receiving benefits if you take a new job, under transitional own-occupation coverage, your benefits may be reduced by your salary from your new job
How do I buy own-occupation disability insurance?
Protecting the most valuable asset you possess is a good step to take. WealthCare walks with you through the whole process from finding the most suitable insurance company and having an insurance agent aid the ease of ensuring financial security in any case of disability. Let us help you today, speak with an agent today. Please ask us about your eligibility to receive a 10% AMA discount.
Top Disability Providers
We work with the top disability insurance providers that offer the best option for long-term disability policies such as Mass Mutual, Guardian, Ohio national, and Ameritas.
We have a detailed understanding of their policies which allows us to guide you to buy a disability insurance policy that works for you and your business. Please note, that these companies do not offer short-term disability which is usually purchased through a group plan.