Freak accidents

Why you need coverage for mishaps both straightforward and strange

They happen all the time: freak accidents that leave you shaking your head in disbelief. There’s the America’s Next Top Model winner who lost a film role when a handstand went awry, the football player who slipped on a rubber mat and injured his knee, the NASCAR driver who broke his foot playing Frisbee, the baseball pitcher who missed a key game because he strained his wrist playing Guitar Hero.

Accidents occur every second and affect all sorts of people. Whether it’s falling off the roof while stringing Christmas lights or slipping on a freshly mopped floor, stuff just happens. Google “freak accidents” and you’ll get thousands of examples, some chuckle-worthy in a “you’ve got to be kidding me” kind of way and others downright sad.

When it comes to accidents, American workers have a sense of invincibility. Accidents, they tell themselves, are things that happen to other people. But chances are the guy who’s been in rehab for years because a tree limb fell on him in Central Park felt the same way. Accidents simply happen – that’s why they’re called accidents. No one can predict when or who they’ll strike.

Who pays for that?

You may believe the Social Security administration will lend you a financial hand if you’re hurt, but that’s often an incorrect assumption: Currently, 65 percent of applicants for government benefits are turned down. What’s more, 90 percent of disabilities are not work-related, so they’re not covered by workers’ compensation.1

Adding insult to injury is the fact that many families simply aren’t good at saving money. Half of all U.S. households are “financially fragile” and would have difficulty raising $2,000 within a month.2 That’s bad news when a breadwinner is injured and can’t work – and, therefore, can’t earn an income.

The good news? You can help protect your family’s financial security by applying for group or individual disability insurance. What’s more, you choose how much coverage you need, as well as how much you can afford to pay in premiums.

Here are a few disability facts to remember:

  • The threat of a disabling accident is real: The Social Security Administration estimates that slightly more than 25 percent of 20-year-olds will be disabled before reaching age 67.3
  • Just 31 percent of Americans are protected by disability insurance, and half of those believe they need more coverage.4
  • A mere 9 percent of long-term disabilities are the result of accidents that are considered “serious.”1
  • Employer-provided disability insurance prevents as many as 575,000 families each year from slipping into poverty levels, and saves the government and taxpayers up to $4.5 billion annually.5

Without regular paychecks, you might find it difficult or even impossible to pay your monthly mortgage or rent, car and credit card payments, utility bills, education costs, and food bills. If that describes your situation, consider protecting your most valuable asset – your income – with disability insurance.

Facts from LIMRA, 2013 Disability Insurance Awareness Month, accessed Aug. 6, 2013 -
Financial Fragile Households, Evidence and Implications, National Bureau of Economic Research, accessed Aug. 6, 2013 –
Social Security Basic Facts, Social Security Administration, accessed Aug. 6, 2013 -
LIMRA and LIFE Foundation Insurance Barometer Study 2012, Workplace Attracts Double the Number of Disability Insurance Shoppers as Traditional Shopping Methods, accessed Aug. 6, 2013 –
Charles River Associates, Financial Security for Working Americans: An Economic Analysis of Insurance Products in Workplace Benefits, accessed Aug. 6, 2013 –

This content is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be a solicitation.

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