With the launch of Standard’s new Disability Insurance product, Platinum Advantage, in 42 states next week (January 3, 2017), the discussion below of their “Family Care” benefit is timely.
A Guest Blog by Jill Frohardt, Regional Director, The Standard
Driving home a couple of weeks ago, I heard a story on the radio about a poll that asked men and women to list the one thing they could not live without. The results were pretty funny – women ranked their beds higher than their husbands. As someone who values my sleep, I might say it’s a toss-up between my husband and my bed, but don’t tell him that.
In all seriousness, our families are the most important thing in our lives. If they needed us, we’d be there in a heartbeat to help, and, according to the Family Caregiver Alliance, for approximately 43.5 million people in the U.S. that means providing unpaid caregiving services.
Caring for a family member can cause physical, emotional and financial stress. Many caregivers struggle with trying to maintain a job, keeping up with household and family duties, and providing care for their loved one. In a recent FMLA survey, 62 percent of employees taking FMLA leave with partial or no pay reported some financial difficulties and 30 percent reported severe financial difficulties.1
At The Standard, we want to help ease the financial burden of caregiving. That’s why we’ve provided the Compassionate Care Benefit® in The Standard’s Protector PlatinumSM individually underwritten disability insurance policy (in approved states only) for the past six years.
This built-in benefit helps replace income for an insured who suffers income loss due to taking time away from work to care for a family member with a serious health condition. The Compassionate Care Benefit pays a monthly benefit in proportion to the insured’s loss of income, for a total of up to six times the policy’s basic monthly benefit. And it’s automatically included in the Protector PlatinumSM policy at no extra cost.
Over the past six years, we’ve seen this benefit’s impact on our customers. The Compassionate Care Benefit has given some of our customers what they needed most at a difficult time in their lives: time to spend with their loved one while receiving benefits to help replace lost income.
The Standard is continuing this benefit with our newest product, Platinum Advantage, available as of January 3, 2017 in 42 states. The individually underwritten product will be released first, and the Guaranteed Standard Issue version, targeted to the employer market, will roll out shortly after.
With the launch of Platinum Advantage, we’ve retitled the benefit “Family Care” and included it in both the fully underwritten and GSI products. It previously was available only with individually underwritten IDI. We’re going “all in” with this provision!
We at the Standard are not the only ones who see a tremendous need for this benefit. In 2016, Nike and Deloitte have both added paid caregiving leave as an employee benefit, and the state of New York has mandated paid caregiving leave to begin in 2018. Paid caregiving leave is on the cusp of becoming a more mainstream benefit offered by employers.
Because the Family Care Benefit will be included in the Platinum Advantage GSI policy, your employer clients will be able to offer their employees this form of paid caregiving leave through a GSI plan.
We are extremely excited about the broader inclusion of this valuable benefit in our new Platinum Advantage product. If you’d like more information on Platinum Advantage or the Family Care Benefit, please contact the team at DiBroker East-Eskra & Associates.
1Source: Family Caregiver Alliance, Caregiver Statistics: Demographics. Accessed September 1, 2016
Jill Frohardt | Regional Director, the Standard
Jill joined The Standard in 2014. Jill has had a variety of roles in the insurance industry for 12 years, seven of which have been in sales. Prior to The Standard, Jill worked with Mutual of Omaha and Allied Insurance. Other roles have included claims, underwriting, product development and sales. In her free time, Jill enjoys running, home-improvement projects and the outdoors