I think disability insurers should swallow hard and get whatever antitrust approvals or other approvals they need to have, some tough, independent organization to post easy-to-understand, marketwide claim resolution statistics.
Ideally, the statistics would give median claim approval rates and claim resolution times, along with bottom-decile and top-decile statistics.
Maybe the independent body could try to adjust for malingerer-on-sofa problems by, for example, posting separate statistics for completely subjective conditions, partly subjective conditions and not-at-all subjective conditions.
Give would-be buyers some idea of how likely they are to get paid, and in what kind of timeframe, if they have conditions such as strokes, heart attacks or paralysis.
In my personal life, I’ve never met someone who suffered a disability and had disability insurance.
I’ve met three people who did have disability insurance when they became disabled. Two of the three looked to me as if they were about as employable as anyone else. One used the income he got from his disability benefits to set up a busy political advocacy organization, and another used hers to set up a food truck-based business.
So, my own personal experience is that fraud against disability insurers is extremely common. Even when claimants really have health problems, the main challenge many of those claimants face is employers’ reluctance to employ people with health problems, not any serious difficulty with working.
But I also run into many people who like they idea of disability insurance but are afraid of buying it because they are skeptical about the possibility that an insurance company would really pay a claim.
One self-employed relative told me, for example: “I would like to have disability insurance, but, if I needed benefits, how would I collect?”