Disability Insurance is a complex insurance product. They have many moving parts, and not every policy is the same. Be sure to check and understand it.


While disabled, an individual may receive income from a Disability Insurance policy, tax-free, if the individual has paid 100% of the cost.

The income can cover:

  • Income replacement
  • Expenses
  • Business overhead

Vital things to check:

  1. Continually update your salary information, to be sure you receive proper coverage.
  2. Non-Evidence-Maximum (NEM) is the maximum amount that will be paid out in a group plan without being required to provide medical evidence of insurability. Be sure it is enough. Top-ups are available, separately.
  3. A policy can pay benefits for as long as 2 years, 5 years, or up to age 65. This depends on which options your employer chose. Four months before 65 voids Long Term Disability, as the 120-day elimination period would take you beyond eligible coverage.
  4. Each plan has an elimination period. An elimination period is the amount of time that must pass during your disability before benefits are payable to you.

Elimination Periods:

  • Group = usually 120+ days
  • Personal = 30, 60, 90, or 120+ days

While on approved disability, confirm with your employer about the premium waiver.

*The 2-year own-occupation, within a group plan, has one of the better ratings for disability insurance.


If you become disabled, your personal insurance may offer:

  • Premium waiver
  • Premium holiday – you can use the policy’s value to pay the premiums for a short time
  • Whole Life Insurance – an insurance product that can supplement your disability income using the cash values


Policy add-ons, called riders, offer the ability to continue your retirement funding during total disability. Even a few missed deposits can make an impact on your retirement fund. You can also add riders to offer a refund of dollars after a specified number of years (typically 8 years) if you have made no claims. These are dollars that you could add to your investments at a later date.

** It is always good to check all your plans to see if they offer what you think they do.

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