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Did you know May is Disability Insurance Awareness Month?

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With everything from graduations to vacations, May is always a very busy time. Indeed, it's so busy that people might not know that it's Disability Insurance Awareness Month.

Industry leaders will be stressing the need for income protection in the coming weeks. As part of this year's campaign, efforts will be centered on working adults under 40. Experts say that this populous age group is tragically unaware of its vulnerability to periods of lost income.

These efforts to reach young workers will be spearheaded by the Council for Disability Awareness. The group is also planning a simultaneous campaign targeting smaller employers. The focus of the commission will be on encouraging the expansion of disability insurance offerings and availabilities to employees.

The campaign is now on its eleventh year, and individuals who question their mission should consider the following:

  • Only 50 percent of full-time workers have short-term disability coverage and only 44 percent long-term purchased long-term disability insurance
  • Only 14 percent of part-time workers have access to short-term disability and only 5 percent long-term have long-term insurance available to them
  • Only 29 percent of employees of small companies have access to short-term disability and 23 percent to long-term coverage
  • One-in-four of today's 20-year-olds will be disabled before reaching 67

Consumers who are still unsure about the initiative might find the following figures on government programs interesting:

  • Roughly 700,000 applications for Social Security disability benefits are approved each year out of the over two million submitted
  • SSDI benefits currently average only about $1,171 per month, just above the 2017 federal poverty line
  • SSDI benefits replace less than 50 percent of the income for those earning over $30,000 per year

Here's hoping this year's campaign continues the tradition of changing minds and protecting livelihoods.

Source: Council for Disability Awareness, "Disability Insurance Awareness Month 2017," May 2017

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