Almost two-thirds of full-time, single workers are worried they wouldn't have enough money to pay bills if they suddenly lost their income, yet almost 60 percent have no disability insurance to protect them, according to a new survey by MetLife.
Disability insurance replaces a portion of income when people are unable to work for a period of time due to an illness or injury.
According to MetLife's 9th Annual Study of Employee Benefits Trends, about 65 percent of single, working women admit to being very concerned about their financial security in the event of a disability or serious illness, but only 44 percent of single, working men say the same. Yet even young and healthy people can become disabled.
An analysis of MetLife 2010 disability claims data found that:
- 10 percent of approved short-term disability claims were for men ages 21 to 30, with an average duration of 40 days.
- 22 percent of approved short-term disability claims were for women ages 21 to 30, with an average duration of 46 days.
- 5 percent of approved long-term disability claims approved were for men ages 21 to 30. The average duration for closed claims was 32 months, and the top causes were fractures, back strain and cancer.
- 10 percent of approved long-term disability claims were for women ages 21 to 30. Top causes were pregnancy, depression and back strain, and the average duration was 21 months for closed claims.
Insurance experts recommend short-term and long-term disability benefits for all workers. Almost three-quarters of employers offer some type of disability coverage, according to the MetLife study.