When physicians purchase individual disability insurance, typically they request that their policy cover them in their own occupation. This would cover them in their medical specialty if they could no longer perform those duties. Additionally, they would continue to receive benefits if they are working in another specialty or occupation.
But what happens when a physician is no longer working as a physician when they become disabled?
“Own occupation policies are designed to cover individuals in the capacity that they were working in just prior to their claim, “ said Jamie Fleischner, CLU, President of Set for Life Insurance. “If a former emergency physician now runs an urgent care clinic, they would be considered disabled if they couldn’t run that clinic. If they were injured and couldn’t practice emergency medicine but could run the clinic, they would not be considered disabled under an own occupation policy since they weren’t working as an emergency physician at the time of claim.
Additionally, if a physician changed specialties, it would cover them in the specialty they were practicing in at the time of claim. For instance, if a physician purchased their policy while doing internal medicine but later do a fellowship in interventional cardiology, an own occupation policy would cover them as an interventional cardiologist.
It is important to read the policy carefully. Each company has slightly different language and names for these riders.
For more information about own occupation individual disability insurance, contact Set for Life Insurance today!