Why dread disease insurance is hardly worthwhile

Some insurers offer so-called dread disease insurance as an alternative to occupational disability policies. However, these rarely benefit seriously ill workers

More than one third of Germans are afraid of not being able to work anymore for financial reasons. This is what a DEVK survey from last year shows. Many employees want to take out disability insurance (BU) in case of an emergency . However, this doesn't always work out: Those with pre-existing conditions or a particularly high occupational risk sometimes don't get insurance coverage – or the policies become so expensive due to high risk surcharges that they can hardly be paid for on an average salary.

If you are not insured against occupational disability, you will only receive the statutory pension for reduced earning capacity in the event of a claim. The amount of the pension depends on how long one has paid into the statutory pension insurance. Don't lavish it, even on long-time contributors.

Not a substitute for disability insurance

As the "little sister" of the BU, some insurers offer so-called dread disease policies. These kick in if policyholders have serious health conditions such as cancer or multiple sclerosis. Statistically, illnesses are the most common reason for disability. Nevertheless, dread disease insurance cannot replace a BU.

Around 30 percent of Germans who can no longer perform their jobs for health reasons suffer from nervous disorders or mental illnesses. A further 20 percent or so are affected by diseases of the skeletal system-. musculoskeletal system out of action. That's what a survey by the Morgen& rating agency shows Morning. However, these are precisely the diseases that dread disease insurance does not cover.

For example, a policy from Nurnberger Versicherung, as well as many similar offers, includes malignant forms of cancer, strokes, heart attacks and liver or lung diseases, among others. Meanwhile, the so-called common diseases such as burnout, depression or back pain are not included. "These cases do not count as serious illnesses and are usually covered by disability insurance," the insurer writes on its website.

Dread disease insurance pays once only

Even if one of the covered conditions occurs, policyholders can't always rely on their dread disease policy. Often, the disease must be relatively advanced before the insurer will pay out. Moreover, when it does, insureds don't get a monthly pension like they would with BU, which at least partially compensates for lost wages. Instead, there's a one-time payment. This means that those who fall ill can compensate for a loss of earnings for a short time at most. Another drawback: once the insurer has paid, the policy ends. If the insured gets cancer, for example, and later suffers a heart attack, money doesn't flow a second time.

If you fail with your application for BU and are looking for an alternative, it would be better to take out a disability policy instead of dread disease insurance. Unlike BU, this does not cover the inability to continue working in your last job, but the general loss of earning capacity. So there is money only if you can no longer work at all. That makes the insurance cheaper. Easier to get than a BU.

Insurance 5 tips for disability insurance

Occupational disability cover is one of the must-haves in the insurance portfolio. Because policies aren't easy to get for people with malaises, it pays to start early – at the latest when you start your career.

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