Choosing A Disability Carrier? Consider These Pointers
By Douglas T. Maines
Insurance is a product that is only as good as the promise behind it. At its core, group disability insurance is a promise to pay benefits when an employers disabled employees need financial support because they are unable to work.
Recently, the disability insurance industry has come under scrutiny for some carriers financial strength and reported claims practices. And employers may be questioning whether disability insurers have the ability and intent to keep their promises over the long term.
Thankfully, stable carriers that are dedicated to the group disability market do exist. The challenge for the broker and the employer is finding them and recognizing the characteristics to use in evaluating them. Following are some suggestions.
It is a given that employers must always evaluate price. But its not just price that matters in selecting a group disability carrier. There are many other factors to consider.
Remember, disability insurance is a specialty product, not a commodity. The advisors role, then, is to help the employer make an informed selection based on all the factors that define an effective disability offering.
Producers can build lasting relationships with their clients by recommending carriers that can be trusted to pay claims many years from now and that wont give their clients headaches and surprises.
When requesting proposals for clients, producers should research carriers and look for the characteristics that can be signs of strength and stability. Here are some characteristics to consider:
Substantial investment in claims management. Dedicated carriers have a commitment to evaluating and paying claims quickly.
They should have skilled resources, such as nurse case managers or vocational case managers that focus on helping employees return to work. They can assist employers in developing practices that encourage and support an early return to work, and reducing expenses and lost productivity.