As of the first of this year, the National Association of Independent Truckers is newly offering a disability insurance plan via its TIEMarketplace.com website. It’s a short-term disability policy that covers downtime due to illness or injury, ensuring you get up to 60 percent of your income if such an event prevents you from working. In the event of a disabling injury, benefits are paid immediately under the plan — in the case of a longer-term illness, benefits are paid after 14 days down.
Most drivers, NAIT notes, operate their business without disability today, yet the probability of having a long-term disability is between 1 in 3 and 1 in 4 workers in America. Contrast this to unexpected death, say from an accident, which is 1 in 114. Even dying from cancer has less likely odds: 1 in 7.
A common misunderstanding, NAIT says, is that fairly common occupational accident insurance will cover disability, but that’s not exactly the case, given occ/acc is limited to injuries that occur while on duty and under dispatch, and it doesn’t provide coverage in the event of illness.
Independent drivers can cover up to $1,500 a week of their incomes. There are two benefit periods available – 13 or 26 weeks. The NAIT call center can quote premium rates through 8 p.m. EST daily, the organization says.
The website lists a sample premium for a $750 per week benefit at around $26 for a 45-year-old male in the 13-week plan, $32 in the 26-week plan.