How Will My Disability Insurance Policy Pay?

The most important factor to take into consideration when choosing to protect your income with disability insurance, is the DEFINITION of total disability on your policy.



All white collar occupations should be protected with a DI policy that has “own-occ” definition of total disability. This will allow you to work in another occupation and still receive 100% of disability benefits, if you can’t work in your occupation.


Specialty Own-Occ

Doctors want to make sure their definition of disability protects the duties of their medical specialty. A surgeon who gets his income exclusively from performing surgeries, can become totally disabled in his specialty if he or she develops a condition or has an accident affecting a hand or even a finger. This person could continue working in medical field as a General Doctor, for example; Specialty Own-Occupation DI will pay 100% of disability benefits regardless of the new income received from the new specialty/occupation, if the surgeon can’t perform the duties of surgery specialty.


Modified Own-Occupation Definition

Also called Own-Occ and Not Working – this definition of disability gives the client the option to choose not to work in another occupation, if she or he can not perform the duties of their regular occupation – and receive 100% of DI benefits. If they can’t work in their occupation and do choose to work in another occupation, then the disability becomes residual or partial, and residual disability benefits will be paid, based on the % of loss of income. If the income from the new occupation is the same or higher than the old occupation, no loss of income occurs and no benefits will be paid at that point under this definition of disability.


Limited Own-Occupation (2 years Own-Occ; 5 years Own Occ)

Own-Occupation for 2 or 5 years, and Not Working thereafter – will provide the best definition of disability for the first years of a disability giving you enough time to try to recover and figure if you will be able to go back to work or if you’re still disabled and unable to do any of your job’s duties, and maybe consider taking another job. This definition of disability may be the only option for certain occupations, or some may choose this definition for the lower cost versus the full or true own-occupation definition.


If you have any questions about the disability insurance definitions, contact one of our experienced disability insurance professionals.  Email  or call  877-LIFE-GUY


Author: LifeGuy

Daniel LifeGuy Dragan has 126 posts in this blog.

Daniel is a dedicated insurance expert with a focus on helping individuals, families and small businesses avoid financial disasters with Life Insurance products, Paycheck Protection (Disability Insurance), Retirement planning, Cancer and Critical Illness Insurance, executive and business protection plans. With his comprehensive knowledge and experience in financial protection, Daniel can help save money as well as get all your insurance premiums returned to you if you didn't use any of the benefits. "Return of Premium" insurance is one of Daniel's strengths and along with his personal approach to his customers' needs, one of the main reasons his clients are referring him to friends, family and business partners. Daniel offers free financial consultations and can be reached by email at or phone: (239) LIFE-GUY or 239-466-4466

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