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  • Disability insurance

    As a resident i have bought 3k disability insurance for me and my wife each. We are both physicians and we finished residency( recently). We have very average salary for now.

    My question is: Should i increase my disability insurance at this point?. Keep in mind both of us are physicians. I was thinking about increasing mine only to 10k.

    I know that some would argue that if you have double physician income you will not need disability at all or very small.

     

  • #2
    If you wait to increase your benefit then you will end up paying virtually the same amount of total premium except you will have been covered for less time with the higher benefit. Take a look at your average monthly expenses and insure accordingly. Who practices in the higher risk specialty?

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    • #3
      If both are physicians I see less need to carry as much disability insurance. Could one of you support the other if the other were not working. If so, then you have minimal need. If not, then insure the difference. For me, I don't NEED much, but I wanted to carry about 5k monthly just so I wouldn't be as much of a burden, to cover random medical expenses and not have to ask for an allowance if I were disabled. I'll probably increase that to 7.5k or even 10k if we pick up more house expenses or increase our lifestyle.

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      • #4
        I agree that on "paper" the fact you have a dual physician income household would suggest you don't need much disability insurance.  The reality is if one has a claim then it really upsets the household.  Rarely does a spouse go through a major illness injury by themselves so a disability to one then typically causes the other person to not work much either.  An example of my most recent claim to file (yesterday) was a client had a spinal injury over Christmas, has currently lost use of hands and feet and is heading to a Rehab facility that is 80 miles from their home.  Now I don't know about everyone else but when it comes to my spouse the old 'out of sight out of mind' theory does not really come into play.  If history repeats its self the reality is the non-disabled spouse will have decreased productivity and their income will fall by about 50% just due to missing time, more responsibility at the home to take care of, children issues, and generally just being distracted....as one would expect.  What we typically see is that the income of a dual physician home drops to about 25% of what it was prior to the disability when a claim happens.  Believe me, there are some that don't miss a beat when the spouse is going through a disability and some that stop all to help get their loved one through the hard times.  Just look around the hospital, see how many people are there as patients by themselves vs. with family members....maybe ask those family members if they are missing work to be there.   There is a reason why medical issues are the main cause of bankruptcy.
        Scott Nelson-Archer, CLU, ChFC
        303-953-0263 Direct / [email protected]

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        • #5
          Thank you for input. I probably go up on mine (7.5-10K) and maybe increase her slightly(5K).

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