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The following post was written by Dr. Rodney Mogen, DBA, Founder of SolveUrPuzzles and NAIFA-Texas Secretary Treasurer. To view additional information from Life Happens about Disability Insurance Awareness Month, please click here.

May is Disability Insurance Awareness Month (DIAM). What does disability awareness mean to you? Awareness might mean different things to different people. As an adviser, disability insurance is not often talked about. When compared to life insurance, or even long-term care, individual disability insurance and subsequent products are not discussed or presented to clients as much as they should. Awareness comes in three parts: educating ourselves, educating our clients, and being able to understand the companies and their languages.

Think about it. When you last presented an individual disability policy? In my seminars and webinars I always ask who has presented an individual disability policy in the last month, 90 days, and 6 months. Usually in a room of 20 or more only one or 2 agents raise their hand for 6 months, 1 for 90 days and usually zero for last 30 days. Thus, awareness needs to start with us, the agents.

While many employers have group insurance available, according to a 2019 study by LIMRA, less than 3% of all eligible workers have either group or individual disability coverage, and less than 1% have the proper coverage they need. Being Disability Insurance Awareness Month, what are you doing to talk to your clients about their income protection? Some of you may not have a practice where you work with working age individuals, but those that do should be having this discussion.

Agents have a duty to educate our clients about their current plans and their missed opportunities. There are a lot of ways to do this but simply changing the language from “disability” to “income protection” seems to be most effective. Making clients aware of the difference in language between an individual contract and their group contracts, as well as some of the limitations their groups contracts might have, is important.

Finally, the third part of awareness can be the most difficult—understanding the company language. There are not as many disability insurance companies out there as there used to be, but there are still several. Each one has different types of contracts, pricing, and the language in those contracts can be different as well. Thus, it takes time to look at and find the right contract for your client.

Let’s focus on increasing disability insurance awareness during the month of May and expressing the value to our clients. We owe it to them! If you have any questions or if I can be of assistance to point you to some resources, please reach out to me at 512-680-6851 or rodney@solveurpuzzles.com.