In 2006, 4.4 million (14.3%) Canadians reported activity limitations due to health condition – an increase from 2001 where reported rate was 3.6 million (12.4%) of Canadians.*
What is disability insurance?
With disability insurance, you can ensure that you protect a portion of your income should you be faced with an illness or injury. Depending on your policy, a tax free benefit will be paid out weekly or monthly, and usually up to 2/3 of your income prior to disability.
Partial Disability / Residual Benefits
Consider the idea that you are injured but are able to perform lighter duties at a lower paying job than you previously held. Some policies will help you split the difference between your new wage and your previous wage.
Presumptive BenefitsThis benefit is an feature that allows the insured to receive a benefit if any of the following occurs: loss of sight in both eyes, loss of hearing in both ears, loss of speech, loss of use of both hands, both feet, or the hand and foot on the same side of the body.
Also known as the waiting period, the elimination period is the amount of time you must be considered disabled before receiving your disability pay. Lasting anywhere from 30 days to 120 days, longer periods generally result in less expensive premiums.
Own Occupation vs. Any Occupation
Policies differ in that some specify that the insured is only covered if they cannot perform the duties of their own occupation. This means that they will receive benefit even if they become employed in another occupation. In contrast, other policies specify that the insured is considered disabled only if they cannot perform the duties of any occupation that they are qualified to perform.
How long will you receive benefit if you become disabled? Common duration periods include 2 years, 5 years, or up until age 65. Premiums vary with the option that you choose.
Who can get it?
Disability insurance is available to:
- Business owners
- Home-based workers
- Full-time or part-time employees
Like critical illness, disability can add major financial stress. With disability insurance, you can ensure that you maintain a steady flow of income while you focus on recuperating.
*Source: Statistics Canada