Finding your best disability insurance policy

Learn what to expect when shopping for disability insurance and how occupation, age, health, and other factors can impact your personal rates.

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Rebecca ShoenthalEditor & Licensed Life Insurance ExpertRebecca Shoenthal is a licensed life, disability, and health insurance expert and a former editor at Policygenius. Her insights about life insurance and finance have appeared in The Wall Street Journal, Fox Business, The Balance, HerMoney, SBLI, and John Hancock.

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Disability insurance (DI) is income protection against the possibility of illness or injury that prevents you from working. So naturally, your professional background is one of the biggest factors underwriters use to determine how expensive you are to insure if you lose your ability to earn income. Your occupation helps insurers set your disability insurance rates and dictates which policies are available for you. 

How much you pay for DI also depends on your age, health, and location, as well as coverage amount and what type of policy features you select. Below, you’ll find the top industries, careers, and other categories with specific disability insurance recommendations.

Regardless of your specific job or circumstance, working with a licensed broker who can compare rates across multiple insurers and reading company reviews can help you buy disability insurance with confidence. 

Ready to shop for disability insurance?

Disability insurance for health care workers

Health care work is essential, so the stakes are even higher if you lose your ability to do your job. But beyond that, the health care industry has some of the highest entry costs (education) that strap young employees with expensive student loans. The high earning potential means student loans aren’t that big of a concern. But that makes the risk of losing your income even more dangerous.

Most health care workers should opt for own-occupation disability insurance to best protect themselves financially. 

Disability insurance for corporate workers

Climbing the corporate ladder isn’t cheap. From college tuition to advanced degrees, almost everyone in corporate America has highly specialized skills that justify their high earnings. Most corporate executives and employees couldn’t afford to keep up with their living expenses without their income, making disability insurance essential for financial security. 

Similar to health care workers, corporate employees should opt for own-occupation disability insurance. Any-occupation disability insurance (the other option available) would mean you’re ineligible for disability insurance payments if you are able to work another occupation, regardless of whether you actually take another job. 

Disability insurance for education

Most students do not earn an income, but if you become disabled and can no longer attend school, disability insurance benefits can help you pay your student loans. The same goes for teachers who have pricey Master’s degrees or specialized education experience. 

Don’t have student loans? A licensed disability insurance agent can help talk through whether or not disability insurance is a good option for you. 

Ready to shop for disability insurance?

Disability insurance for other industries

Disability insurance isn’t limited to the white coat or suit-wearers. Depending on your industry or expertise, disability insurance can help support your family if you’re self-employed, or supplement government-sponsored insurance for federal employees. 

The more people rely on you to work, the more important it is to safeguard your income. 

Disability insurance for other situations

Beyond specific occupations, other factors can influence the type or amount of disability insurance you need. Age, location, gender, and retirement goals can all affect your ability to earn income. 

Working with an independent agent can help you get the most competitive disability insurance coverage for your needs. Policygenius works with multiple insurance companies on your behalf and recommends policies based on your unique occupation, health, location, and overall profile.