Workplace Benefits

How Supplemental Insurance Can Benefit You at All Stages of Life 

8 min read
Jul 19, 2023

Chances are, you have a traditional medical insurance plan. But did you know there are other types of insurance that can help with the financial burdens life may throw your way?

Supplemental insurance offers valuable protection for all stages of your life. Learn more about what it is and why you need it as you navigate your 20s, 30s, 40s and beyond.

What is supplemental insurance?

Supplemental insurance can be used to help cover costs resulting from treatments and services that may not be covered by a standard health insurance plan. There are quite a few types of supplemental plans that can provide benefits for a wide range of situations, from health matters to legal disputes.

You can use supplemental health insurance to help cover costs related to accidents, illnesses and injuries. These costs can include medical expenses, but also childcare, transportation, and even groceries. In fact, the money paid out can be used however the recipient sees fit. Other types of supplemental plans, like legal insurance, help cover the costs associated with hiring a lawyer. Pet insurance helps cover veterinary bills for your furry family members.

Supplementary insurance to consider in your 20s

In yours 20s, you may be experiencing a lot of firsts. Maybe you just landed your first full-time job, rented your first apartment or adopted your first pet. Supplemental insurance plans can help protect you and your assets as you go through these new life changes.

Some supplemental plans that can be helpful in your 20s include:

Accident insurance

Even with a great health insurance plan, if you’re injured in an accident, you may have medical (and other) expenses to cover. If you break a leg, for example, you may need assistance getting to work or you may need to have groceries delivered. Accident insurance might be worth the purchase to provide benefits that can be used to help cover those unexpected expenses.

Disability insurance

According to a 2022 report by the U.S. Social Security Administration, there’s a 25% chance that today’s working 20-year-olds will experience a disability that prevents them from working before they reach retirement age. Disability insurance can offer a steady income if you’re unable to work due to illness or injury.

There are two main types of disability insurance policies: short-term and long-term. Typically, short-term disability insurance covers you for a few weeks to months, while long-term policies may provide benefits for a couple of months to years or for the duration of the disability.1

Pet insurance

If you’re considering welcoming a furry friend into your home, consider pet insurance. The joys of being a pet parent are endless, but the role can also come with some considerable expenses. Enrolling in pet insurance may help save you money on costly vet bills including preventive care and expenses related to illnesses or injuries.

So how does pet insurance work? Pet parents typically pay a monthly or annual fee for a policy that may reimburse them for covered medical costs, such as X-rays, exams, and medications. Pet insurance is something you can buy on your own, but it can also be part of the supplemental benefits offered through your work – which may come with a discount or other perks.

Supplementary insurance to consider in your 30s

If you’re in your 30s, you may be facing several major life changes. Maybe you’re contemplating purchasing your first home (the average first-time home buyer is 36 years old) or starting a family (the median age a woman has her first child is 30).2,3

Wherever life takes you at this age, it’s important to protect yourself and your loved ones. Here are a few supplemental plans that may be worth considering:

Legal insurance

If you’re buying or renting a home, it can be helpful to have someone in your corner to read through contracts, represent you in negotiations or handle unexpected issues that could pop up.

Legal insurance can connect you with a network of attorneys to support your home buying journey, as well as through other legal matters. Whether you’re planning to change your name after getting married, need help dealing with a traffic ticket, or plan to start putting together an estate plan, having legal insurance can make it easier to get the support you need.

Hospital indemnity insurance

The average three-day hospital stay costs around $30,000.4 While traditional medical insurance may typically cover most of these costs, you may still be left paying thousands of dollars for things like high deductibles, co-pays, and even non-medical expenses accrued while you’re in the hospital. Hospital indemnity insurance can be used to help cover some of the costs.

As one example, if you or a spouse are planning to become pregnant, hospital indemnity insurance may provide you with a lump-sum that you can then use however you see fit, including baby supplies, baby gear, and even meals when you first arrive home. It can also be used to help pay for out-of-network care and treatment in an emergency or simply help cover household bills while you’re indisposed.

Life insurance

As you enter your 30s, you may have more people who depend on you financially, such as children, aging parents, or a spouse. If loved ones rely on you for financial support or if you want to make sure they have help with end-of-life costs if something happens to you, you may want to consider getting life insurance. Life insurance can help better protect and prepare your family for the future.

Supplementary insurance to consider in your 40s

Your 40s can come with higher income5, but also with increased expenses. For example, if you have children, your costs could start to go up as they plan for college or to move out of the family home. Or even as your house ages, it may be due for necessary repairs. It’s important to pay special attention to your finances at this time, especially as you plan for retirement. As in every time of your life, it’s also essential to keep your health top of mind as your body changes.

Supplemental health plans, like the ones mentioned below, can help you focus on your health and help take the financial pressure off.

Critical illness insurance

Your 40s may be a great time to think about your family’s medical history. Knowing if there’s a family history of certain health issues can better prepare you to handle them if they were to arise. Even if a history of illness doesn't run in your family, a life-altering diagnosis can happen suddenly and to anyone. Critical illness insurance can offer some financial protection to you and your family if someone were to be diagnosed with a serious illness — like cancer, heart disease, Parkinson’s, or Alzheimer's.

Critical illness insurance provides a lump-sum benefit payment for you and your family to use as you see fit. The money can go toward treatments and recovery, as well as household expenses, travel costs, childcare, and more. Ultimately, critical illness insurance is intended to help relieve some of the financial burdens associated with treating an illness, so you can focus on your recovery.

Cancer insurance

Although a cancer diagnosis can happen at any age, research shows that as we get older, our risks for certain cancers increase.7 In addition to age, consider your family history, as studies show this can also raise your chances of developing certain cancers.8 Investing in cancer insurance in your 40s can offer some added financial security if you or a loved one were to be diagnosed with cancer.

Cancer insurance can help pay for both medical and non-medical expenses associated with a cancer diagnosis. The money can be used how you choose, including for experimental treatments, prescription medications, travel and lodging, lab tests, and other expenses. When faced with a cancer diagnosis, cancer insurance can help you prioritize your health and recovery by providing added financial support.

Supplementary insurance to consider in your 50s & 60s

As you’re entering your golden years, you might be more focused on preparedness. Higher medical costs or ensuring you have your estate documents in order may be top of mind. If you don’t already have supplemental insurance plans already consider the below options.

Legal insurance

No matter where you are in your estate planning process, legal insurance can be valuable. Whether you need to prep your last will and testament, appoint an executor of estate, or simply need to update existing documents, legal insurance can connect you with attorneys to help.

Supplemental health insurance

Supplemental health insurance may help provide benefits or coverage beyond the limits of your primary healthcare plan. Since healthcare costs tend to rise as we age, having additional financial support can be valuable. Cancer, hospital indemnity, critical illness and accident insurance can help you cover medical and non-medical costs after an injury or illness diagnosis. This financial support can mean less worry for you and your family so you can focus on your recovery instead of money.

Best time to purchase supplemental insurance and benefits

No matter where you are in life, supplemental insurance can help you feel more financially secure and supported. The sooner you start planning for the future, the better for protecting yourself and your loved ones.

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