Ameritas Disability Insurance for Physicians (Updated 2023)
As a medical professional with a significant amount of time and money invested into your career, disability insurance is one of the most important types of insurance that you should consider purchasing.
With a long track record of paying claims and strong financial strength rating, Ameritas is a great option for medical professionals looking for comprehensive disability income insurance.
Here’s our in depth review of everything you need to know about Ameritas disability insurance.
- Provides a Good Health Benefit that reduces the elimination period each year that you don’t receive benefits from a claim
- If you need treatment from a doctor or dentist after an injury, the policy’s Non-disabiling injury benefit will help pay up to $3,000
- Ameritas typically provides very competitive rates for psychiatrists
- Provides unisex rates in Ohio which makes it more affordable for females
- Base policy covers up to 60 months for claims resulting from mental/nervous conditions
- The maximum coverage of $20,000 per month is the lowest compared to other alternatives and may not be enough for many high earning doctors
- Typically not the best disability option for dentists or podiatrists looking for disability coverage
- There’s no option to increase coverage for mental/nervous conditions past 60 months
Ameritas Disability Insurance Highlights
Ameritas is a mutual insurance company headquartered in Lincoln, Nebraska. It is considered one of the “Big 7” carriers that offer medical professionals a true disability insurance policy that protects their ability to work in a specific medical specialty.
The Ameritas disability insurance policy, DInamic Foundation, is issued by American Life Insurance Corporation in 49 states. In the state of New York, the policy is issued by American Life Insurance Corporation of New York. What’s great about Ameritas is they offer the preferred definition of total disability through their own-occupation rider. This means they allow physicians and dentists to continue to collect the full benefit if they become disabled but could still work in another occupation. Let’s dive into more details about Ameritas disability insurance.
Ameritas Physician Disability Insurance Highlights
When it comes to purchasing physician disability insurance from Ameritas, the default policy does not often include everything you want or need in a policy. And so, Ameritas provides “add-ons,” called riders to increase the types of coverage on the policy. This helps you customize your disability insurance plan to be exactly what you need.
This is always a major section to look for when purchasing disability insurance. If you are a doctor or dentist who becomes injured and can’t work a doctor or dentist anymore, but can work in another field, Ameritas will still pay you full benefits. Not all disability policies are that generous. That said, for certain occupation classes, own occupation is only available for 5 years at Ameritas. That means that after you’ve received benefits for 5 years, you must not be able to work in any profession to be considered totally disabled.
Non-Cancellable & Guaranteed Renewable
Remember that a non-cancellable disability insurance policy means the insurance company can’t cancel, increase premiums or reduce your benefits for as long as you pay the premiums. At Ameritas, you can choose between having non-cancellable coverage or guaranteed renewable.
A benefit period is up until what age the insurance company will pay your benefits if you become disabled. For example, if you become disabled at age 55, do you want them to pay you benefits until you are 60? or 65 years old? Or 70? The length of a benefit period will affect the price of the premium because the longer the benefit period, the greater is the insurer’s risk. Ameritas’s maximum benefit period is up until age 70.
This is always an important detail to look for. When you are paid disability, which income is the insurance company using to determine your benefits? At Ameritas, the company will take your average monthly earnings for the 12 months and 24 months prior to your disability and use whichever is higher.
Does the policy pay benefits for mental disorders? In the case of Ameritas, the answer is yes. The company has a two-year limitation on coverage for mental disorders/substance abuse.
Interested in comparing rates from Ameritas against the other disability insurance companies?Compare Disability Quotes
Ameritas Physician Disability Insurance Riders
All physician disability insurance policies come with the option to add riders. A rider is an optional provision within the insurance contract that provides extra benefits or flexibility depending on your situation. Most riders come with an added cost, but it depends on the insurer. Here are two important riders for Ameritas:
Cost-of-living Adjustment (COLA) Rider
A COLA rider ensures that your benefits will keep up with inflation. The rider will adjust your policy’s monthly benefit on an annual basis, based on a fixed percentage or tied to the consumer price index. Ameritas offers two cost-of-living adjustment riders:
- The first one determines the cost of living benefit by multiplying the monthly income benefit by 3% for each year you are disabled
- The second COLA rider uses an index ratio based on the consumer price index. The index ratio will be the lesser of:
- The current index divided by the initial index
- 1 + 6%, compounded annually
This ratio will never be less than 1 and your adjusted monthly benefit is equal to the index ratio multiplied by your contractual monthly benefit.
Residual Disability Rider
Disability insurance policies pay benefits if you’re unable to work (total disability) or if you can partially work (residual disability). If you still want to receive benefits even though you can partially work, you should purchase residual disability insurance rider. Ameritas has two residual disability riders:
- A 15% or more decline in earnings; AND
- Either you are unable to perform all of the “material and substantial duties of your occupation, or you are unable to work in your occupation at least 80% of the time prior to your disability
- You’ll be paid 50% of your base monthly benefit for total disability…
- Or your loss of earnings / prior monthly earnings x base monthly benefit.
- The only difference with Ameritas’ enhanced rider is that if your loss of monthly earnings is more than 75%, you will be considered totally disabled and paid 100% of your policy’s benefit amount
- Also, if you’ve returned to work but your income is at least 15% of your pre-disability earnings, you will be paid a recovery benefit.
Future Increase Option Rider
A future increase option rider allows you to increase your base monthly benefit without providing evidence of insurability, up to three times your base monthly benefit. You can exercise the full amount on any policy anniversary through age 40. After age 40, you can exercise half the base benefit through age 55. Exercising the future increase option will require an additional premium.
Automatic Increase Rider
The automatic increase rider enables you to increase your monthly disability benefit by 4% on your policy anniversary for the first five years without additional underwriting.
Catastrophic Disability Rider
This rider provides additional benefits, up to 3 times the base benefit for total disability or a maximum of $10,000 a month in the event you are unable to perform at least two of the six activities for daily living.
How Does Ameritas Disability Insurance Compare?
While Ameritas provides a really great options for physicians looking for disability insurance, Ameritas isn’t the only option available in the market. Other companies like Principal, Guardian and MassMutual provide similar policies that may be a better alternative for some doctors. Here’s how Ameritas stacks up to the competition.
Ameritas Life Insurance Corp. is a mutual insurance company headquartered in Lincoln, Nebraska. The company sells a wide array of individual and employer-sponsored insurance products including life insurance, disability insurance, dental and vision insurance throughout the United States.
- Legal Name:Ameritas Life Insurance Corp.
- Year Founded:1887
- Headquarters:Lincoln, Nebraska
- CEO:Bill Lester
- AM Best Rating:A
- Ownership Structure:Mutual
- Distribution Channels:Captive and Independent
- Fortune 500/1000:No. 671
- Products Offered:Life insurance, disability insurance, dental insurance , vision insurance, investments and annuities