Self-Employed? Make Sure You Purchase Private Disability Insurance

While being self-employed surely has its benefits, like greater freedom and flexibility, it does have the downfall of not providing the benefits that working for an employer typically provides. If you are self-employed and become injured, resulting in a disability that makes you unable to work again, you'll be left high and dry without income or the protections that workers comp would offer in a traditional employment role. To protect yourself from such a calamity, it's very important that you purchase a disability insurance policy as a self-employed person.

What does private disability insurance cover?

Private disability insurance policies pay out in the case that you become injured and unable to work as a result of that injury. For example, if you are working as a self-employed crane operator and fall from your crane, injuring your neck, your injuries may prevent you from working as a crane operator or in most other professional ever again. Your disability policy would then pay out.

How much do disability policies pay?

They won't typically pay out your whole salary, but most policies will pay between 50% and 80% of your pre-injury salary. Some policies do have a maximum. For instance, they may pay $50,000 per year or 60% of your income -- whichever is lower. This is typically enough for you to live off of if you make some cuts and also apply for disability benefits through the government. 

Why do you need private disability insurance if the government offers disability insurance?

Social security disability insurance, the disability insurance offered through the federal government, is a benefit you can apply for after you become injured and unable to work. However, it does not pay very much. Most SSDI recipients only receive between $700 and $1700 per month, which is probably not enough for you to live off of. However, it is a good supplement to a private disability insurance policy and may make up for the difference between your pre-injury salary and the amount your insurance company pays to you.

How can you make a good disability insurance claim?

When making any disability insurance claim, it is important that you provide the company with plenty of evidence to indicate that you were, in fact, injured and that your injuries do prevent you from working. Usually, you will want a doctor's statement to back this up, perhaps along with pictures of your injuries. Bank statements can be used to prove what your income was prior to your injury. You may also want to include additional evidence, such as statements from witnesses who saw you become injured or from a business associate who is aware of your daily duties and the fact that you can no longer perform them.

What if your claim is denied?

If your private insurance claim is denied, it's important not to give up. Many people are successful in appealing their claims under the guidance of an attorney. A lawyer can help identify areas where your claim may be weak in evidence. They can then help you collect additional evidence to support your claim. If your claim is denied a second time, you and your attorney can even sue the insurance company. This can be a lengthy and drawn-out process, but in the end, you should get the money you need and deserve to go on living after an injury. Contact lawyers like Iler and Iler to learn more about making a claim.

When you are self-employed, you do not have workers comp insurance to fall back on if you become injured on the job. So make sure you purchase a private disability insurance policy so that an injury that keeps you from working does not leave you in financial ruin.