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26 May 2017

Protect paychecks against the unexpected

You helped friends move their furniture; now you can’t move. That could cost three paychecks.

Your doctor says you’ve eaten your last bacon-wrapped hot dog. Or you’ll risk four paychecks.

You made a diving catch to clinch the win for the company softball team. While you might be carried off the field a hero, you’ll miss eight paychecks.

One in four of today’s 20-year-olds will experience a disability lasting three months or longer before they hit retirement age1—a headline statistic when it comes to disability insurance. These temporary disabilities often leave workers without a paycheck and employers short-staffed, whether due to a back injury (average time out of work, six weeks), heart attack (eight weeks), or knee replacement (16 weeks)2.

And yet, only a third of American workers have disability coverage through their employer, according to a 2016 LIMRA survey3. Those counting on the government to provide disability payments are often disappointed: the latest Social Security Administration statistics show that more than 70 percent of disability claims are denied, and less than half of those claims are approved upon appeal4.

Insurance companies like the Prudential Insurance Company of America can fill the gap, offering employer-sponsored disability coverage, absence management and return-to-work solutions.

“No one imagines their livelihood being threatened by an injury or disability, even for a short time,” says Jim Gemus, a senior vice president for Prudential Group Insurance. “The statistics show it’s something  we need to be concerned about.”

Risk of a debilitating injury isn’t limited to physically-demanding, blue-collar work—disabling illnesses and accidents often happen outside the workplace. With more than 3,000 short-term and more than 3,900 long-term disability clients, Prudential protects upwards of 3.7 million lives in the U.S. Prudential offers workers a free online tool, the Disability Insurance Needs Estimator, to estimate how much disability coverage they may need based on their age, marital status, and income.

Today’s job market is seeing the greatest hiring spree of full-time employees since 2007, according to employment website CareerBuilder. Gemus believes this presents an opportunity for employers to diversify their benefit offerings to attract and retain talent.

“A good employer-sponsored disability insurance plan not only protects employees’ financial wellness, it also helps businesses handle the costs and complexities of disability management,” Gemus says. “Our main concern is helping individuals pay the bills so they can recover and get back to work.”

After all, every winning company softball team needs to keep its stars on the field.

Want to learn more about disability insurance or speak with Jim Gemus? Contact lisa.magnino@prudential.com.



 
1Social Security Administration, Fact Sheet, June 2015.
2MDguidelines.com cites average duration for each condition and number of missed paychecks, based on a biweekly payment schedule. All average durations based upon the MDA’s Optimum duration in days for a medium duty job classification. Actual durations will vary.
3LIMRA Insurance Barometer Study, 2016.
4Annual Statistical Report on the Social Security Disability Insurance Program, 2015


Group Insurance coverage is issued by The Prudential Insurance Company of America, a Prudential Financial Company, Newark, NJ.

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