Friday, February 22, 2013

Self Employed Benefits For Maternity Leave

Self employed benefits for maternity leave sounds like an oxymoron. How can a self employed person pay themselves for not working during maternity leave? Short term disability insurance can be used to create maternity leave income for self employed women planning a pregnancy. But you have to know when to start coverage, where to find the right policy, and a no longer secret tip in order to qualify.

Short Term Disability Insurance pays a benefit for your normal labor and delivery. The benefit you receive may greatly exceed the premium you pay, helping you to create maternity leave income. In addition, your policy may pay additional benefits in case of pregnancy complications, postpartum disorders, accidents, and illnesses. Buying short term disability insurance is one of the smartest moves any woman can make before getting pregnant.

When to Start

Your policy needs to begin before getting pregnant in order to qualify for the maternity leave benefit. Most policies contain nine month exclusion for normal delivery. Since many pregnancies do not go full term, start your policy several months before conception. That way if you deliver early, your normal delivery will fall comfortably outside the exclusion period. Your benefit will still greatly exceed your premium paid. Why jeopardize a sure thing?

You have to buy the right type of short term disability insurance, and this is the quandary faced by most self employed women. Short term disability programs sold direct to individuals do not provide the normal maternity leave benefit described above. Insurers realize that women planning a pregnancy will be eager to buy such policies, and that they will lose a significant sum on almost every policy sold to women in this life stage. So insurers only sell short term disability insurance with pregnancy benefits through groups. And that sums up the self-employed woman's dilemma: she does not qualify because she is not part of a group. She is a one person act.

Where to Find the Right Policy

A self-employed woman can obtain disability insurance sold only to groups by leveraging her affiliation with a larger entity. A significant portion of self-employed women are therapists: physical therapists, occupational therapists, speech therapists, etc. Many therapists work as independent contractors, or 1099 employees. They are paid by an agency, or other entity based upon the number of patients they treat, and the hour billed the patient.

The No Longer Secret Tip

Certain insurers will sell short term disability policies with pregnancy and maternity leave benefits to 1099 workers. If the agency agrees to take withhold money from contractor checks, and make the benefit available to all W2 and 1099 employees, then the insurer will be happy to issue policies to all qualified self employed workers.

Now self employed women who are planning a pregnancy can purchase short term disability insurance before getting pregnant, get coverage for pregnancy and maternity leave, and enjoy her time bonding with her baby, without worrying about how to pay her bills. Plus, she gets extra protection in case of complications, accidents and illnesses. All she has to do is ask her agency to take the money from her check, and send it to the insurer.

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