young African American lawyer with disabilities in wheelchair smiling thoughtfully out the window

Lawyers With Disabilities Battle More Than We Think

Think about it. When was the last time you saw a lawyer with a disability? And no, Netflix’s legally-blind Daredevil “Matt Murdock,” doesn’t count.

For years it has been touted that prior to the age of retirement, one out of every four working-age Americans will become diagnosed with a Long-Term Disability at some point in their career. So, if that is true, how is it that there are so few lawyers with disabilities?

Not All Disabilities Are Visible

When we initially think of a disability, our mind immediately tends to gravitate towards those in wheelchairs or walking with a cane, but there are a number of disabilities that are invisible to the eye but can be every bit as difficult to manage.

According to the 1994-1995 Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP) roughly 1 out of every 10 Americans is recorded as having a severe disability— in today’s numbers, that translates to 32.57 million people. In the nineties it was found that out of those 1 in 10 Americans with disabilities over 74% of them did not use any assistive devices making their disability invisible to strangers.

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man diagnosed with long term disability contemplating future

5 Most Common Attorney Long-Term Disability Claims

According to the Council for Disability Awareness, it is estimated that one out of every four Americans will find themselves diagnosed with a disability prior to retiring at the age of 65. Additional studies show that less than half of individuals and families have enough money saved to sustain their living expenses for even one month before feeling the financial strain— illustrating that a long-term disability diagnosis can not just be devastating for the individual but also financially devastating for their entire family.

In short, no one plans to become disabled. And yet, it can happen to anyone at any time and the chances of it happening only increase with age, lifestyle choices, and even the type of work we do on a daily basis.

Popular Long-Term Disability Claims

But while the majority of people may imagine someone who struggles with a long-term disability as wheelchair bound, the fact of the matter is that long-term disabilities can manifest in a host of different ways— some visible, some not.

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man with long term disability insurance with son at park

The Underestimated Value of Long-Term Disability Insurance For Attorneys

For many, the thought of investing in a long-term disability insurance policy may sound like an unnecessary expense. It is estimated that roughly 86 percent of Americans have desk jobs, therefore it is easy to understand why they might be under the impression that they have little to no chance of becoming disabled during the course of their career. This is a potentially dangerous mistake.

The Odds of Needing Long-Term Disability Insurance

While it is true that those who work more labor-intensive jobs may have an increased risk of becoming injured or disabled at some point in their careers, those who work in office settings also have at least a one in four chance of the same thing happening to them.

In 2015, the Bureau of Labor Services estimated that there were 1,153,490 cases of work-related injuries and illnesses that resulted in missing days from work. This statistic can be scary for both businesses and individuals alike. And while most states mandate that every business with one of more employees must have workers’ comp. insurance, what happens when workers’ comp. and social security disability benefits just aren’t enough?

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Long-Term vs. Short-Term Disability: What’s the Difference?

In order to make the most of your insurance plans, it is important to understand the difference between various insurance products offered. Long-term and short-term disability insurance are two products that many people are often confused about. Here’s what you need to know about the advantages and disadvantages of each, and how to determine which option is right for you.

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Meeting Financial Obligations After Disability: What’s Your Plan?

Approximately 37 million Americans are considered disabled; of those 37 million people, more than 50% are still in their working years (age 18-64), according to the Council for Disability Awareness. Unfortunately, many workers never even consider the fact that they could face a temporary or permanent disability, let alone plan for such a situation. What kind of a situation would you be in if you were to become disabled and unable to work?

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