What are voluntary benefits?
Sometimes referred to as “supplemental insurance,” voluntary means the insurance is offered in addition to an employer’s core or standard benefits. With voluntary coverage, your employee can choose the benefits that meet their specific needs. The employee chooses and pays for voluntary benefits, and the premium is typically deducted from their paycheck.
Just like other types of insurance, voluntary insurance products have limitations and exclusions. This means some conditions may not be covered. Your employees should always carefully consider whether a particular policy meets their specific needs.
We represent three companies that offer a variety of voluntary benefits.
Types of voluntary benefits
There are several types of voluntary insurance that can address your personal needs:
Disability Insurance helps protect your employees most valuable asset: their income. This insurance replaces part of their income if they are disabled because of a covered injury or sickness.
Supplemental Life Insurance can complement employer-provided life insurance. Products may include term, whole or universal life, and benefits can be used to help pay for final expenses and to help provide financial security for family members.
Accident Insurance helps protect against the unexpected, including out-of-pocket expenses that may not be covered by major medical insurance in the event of a covered accident.
Hospital Confinement Indemnity Insurance can help fill the gaps in major medical coverage to help pay for hospital-related expenses, including co-payments and deductibles.
Cancer and critical illness insurance supplements major medical coverage to help with the high cost of cancer or critical illness treatment. Some plans offer screening benefits that encourage regular wellness tests.
Advantages of Voluntary Benefits
Flexibility in using claim payments — With medical costs rising every year, assistance from voluntary policies can help with unexpected expenses. You can use claim payments from voluntary benefits you need. Payments can be used to pay deductibles, co-payments, co-insurance and other non-covered costs associated with unexpected accidents or sicknesses.
Portability — If you leave your employer, you can take your individual voluntary coverage with you—unlike most group insurance products. With individual policies, you can keep your coverage when you change jobs or retire, as long as you keep paying the premiums. An exception might be a disability policy, which is designed to provide income protection during normal working years, such as ages 18-65.
Intact Coverage — The provisions of an individual voluntary policy don’t change when you leave a job, whether you leave voluntarily or not. As a policyholder, you maintain the same protection and coverage whether you are employed or not.
Continued Convenience — Many employees appreciate the convenience of paying premiums for voluntary benefits through payroll deduction — there are no checks to write and no premium payment deadlines to remember. If you leave your job, you can usually continue that convenience simply by changing the payment method to direct billing.
Do you have enough insurance coverage to meet your individual needs?
Take a minute and ask yourself the following questions to find out if you have any gaps in your current insurance coverage.
- Is any of my current coverage portable?
- Can I keep it if I change jobs or retire?
- Would the type or amount of my current coverage be affected if I changed jobs?
- Does my spouse have insurance through work?
- How would my family be affected if my spouse or I lost our income for a period of time?
- Does my current insurance coverage meet my family’s needs?
For additional information about how Carriage Trade Benefits Consulting can help you with voluntary insurance plans which can provide the financial protection you and your employees need, please call us today. Michael Jakob 516.358.3612