DI vs. CI: Which Product Is For Your Client?

by Maxwell Schmitz It's a shame we don't write more Critical Illness. I recently did a quote for a client who was working fewer than the minimum 30 hours per week which is required for DI. We created an income replacement solution using Critical Illness. This is a common practice for part-time workers, stay-at-home parents, workers with inconsistent income, or uninsurable occupations like Uber drivers and other gig economy workers. Critical Illness is much more cut-and-dry than Disability Income. CI pays a lump sum upon diagnosis, while DI has a definition of disability that must be met. The broker on the case loved the CI quote. It was about $50/month for $100k of coverage. And better yet, the broker could easily explain how it is paid to the client: upon diagnosis of any one of the listed Critical Illnesses. Now, I carry DI and CI on myself. I think everyone should have both. However, I understand that not everyone loves insurance as much as I do. Therefore, I thought it would be helpful to explain why DI is still the better bet when you have to choose between the two. CI, while easier to explain, is not as comprehensive as DI. CI has a finite list of qualifying Critical Illnesses, and not every disability falls neatly into the three CI categories of "cancer," "heart disease," and "other." DI covers anything that can disable you, including musculoskeletal issues like back, shoulder, and neck problems, and mental disorders like depression, anxiety, and substance abuse. These musculoskeletal and mental health issues alone can add up to thirty percent of claims. These are valid claims that wouldn't necessarily be covered by CI. DI, while it can be wonky to describe, is more of a one-stop solution than any type of Cancer, Heart Attack, Stroke, or CI policy on the market. It covers your client based on their ability to do their job, and/or their loss of income. If you can't do your job to your full potential and your income suffers, a benefit is usually payable. This makes DI the most dynamic and practical solution on the market. And the pricing is better than ever these days. Someone under age 45, for $50/month, can easily secure $1000/month or more, payable until retirement age. And it could be issued with a quick e-app and interview--no medical or financial requirements--for up to $6000/month. Now is the time to look to DI for your clients who work full-time. And for those who don't fall cleanly into the regular DI mold, we still have a great, easy-to-explain product with our Critical Illness solutions.