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LIMRA: Workplace Attracts Double the Number of Disability Insurance Shoppers as Traditional Shopping Methods

WINDSOR, Conn., May 7, 2012 — According to a new LIMRA study, 35 percent of disability insurance shoppers went through their workplace, compared to only 19 percent who shopped the more “traditional” way (meeting with a sales rep or advisor outside of work). More importantly, of those who shopped at the workplace, 70 percent actually bought disability insurance compared to the 59 percent who bought coverage from an advisor outside of work.

“While 6 in 10 consumers say they would have trouble meeting their day-to-day expenses if they were to become disabled and unable to work, we also know that few people actually believe they could become disabled and often ignore the risk short-term or long-term disability can pose to their family’s financial security,” said Kimberly Landry, analyst, LIMRA Group Product Research. “The reality is three in ten people will suffer a disability that could keep them out of work for three months or more.”

A separate joint LIMRA and LIFE Foundation study1 found that only 31 percent of U.S. workers have some disability insurance coverage with half believing they need more disability insurance coverage. LIMRA’s workplace study reveals the potential to reach more of these uninsured and underinsured consumers through their workplace.

The top three things that prompt consumers to shop for disability insurance at their workplace are: concerns about personal health issues (41 percent), inadequate benefits at work (24 percent), and having a close friend or family member become disabled (19 percent). The top reasons consumers buy disability insurance at the workplace mirror the reasons in other channels: income replacement and mortgage protection. (chart)

Only four percent of consumers said they were approached about disability insurance over the last two years in their workplace. Given the greater propensity for people to buy disability insurance when they shop at the workplace, this clearly indicates a great opportunity for growth.

“May is Disability Insurance Awareness Month and there is no better time for our industry to help consumers get the protection they need to ensure their families are financially secure if they are unable to work,” noted Landry. “Our study points out that the workplace is an underutilized channel to reach more consumers where they are more likely to buy.”

1  The Insurance Barometer Study, 2012

About the Study

The findings are based on the results from LIMRA’s U.S. Disability Insurance Buyer-Nonbuyer study, which looked at the disability insurance shopping experience from the consumer’s viewpoint and how consumers’ experiences during this shopping process influence whether they will buy or not. LIMRA surveyed only those consumers who “seriously shopped” for disability insurance over the past 24 months. The results were weighted to represent the U.S. population.

LIMRA Contact:

Catherine Theroux, 860-285-7787, ctheroux@limra.com.

About LIMRA

LIMRA, a worldwide research, consulting and professional development organization, is the trusted source of industry knowledge, helping more than 850 insurance and financial services companies in 73 countries increase their marketing and distribution effectiveness. Visit LIMRA at www.limra.com.