Skip to main content

Do I Need Disability Insurance?

Disability insurance is a form of income protection if you are injured or have a medical condition that prevents you from working. Typically, disability insurance policies do not replace 100% of your income. Policies may replace about 40% to 60% of your income and may cover you for a short-term disability or until retirement age. 

Whether you need a disability insurance plan depends on your individual situation. In determining if you need a policy or how much coverage is needed, you may want to consider: 

  • Are you the breadwinner and is your family dependent on your income? 
  • Do you work in a high-risk job with an increased chance of serious injury? 
  • Do you have debt beyond basic living expenses? 
  • Would an injury lead to a drastic career change and decrease in income? 
  • Are you able to retire and do you have sufficient savings to retire without working? 

As a PERA defined benefit member, you have access to short-term and long-term disability benefits. In order to be eligible for PERA benefits, you must meet certain requirements:  

  • PERA must receive your application within 90 days after you have terminated PERA-covered employment. 
  • You must have five or more years of earned service credit, with at least six months of this credit earned in the most recent membership period. 
  • You must not be eligible for service retirement. 
  • You must not have refunded your PERA account if you are an inactive member. 

PERA’s Disability Benefits Booklet provides details on how to apply and what benefits are available.