Americans need disability now more than ever, as a result of the current financial crisis. The results of a new survey show many Americans have less in savings and investments, and are more vulnerable to serious financial hardship in the event they were to become sick or hurt and couldn't work, according to the Life and Health Foundation for Education (LIFE).
More than a quarter (27%) of working Americans say they would have trouble supporting themselves financially "immediately" following a disability that keeps them out of work, while nearly half (49%) would reach that point in a month or less. Three out of four (74%) would face financial trouble within six months.
"The survey focuses attention on the serious risks facing American workers trying to cope in this difficult economy without disability insurance," says Marvin Feldman, president and CEO of the LIFE Foundation. "Now more than ever, it's critical for Americans to insure their ability to earn an income."
The LIFE survey, which polled a nationally representative sample of 1,007 Americans, ages 18 and older, using an online questionnaire, found that a majority of Americans (66%) feel less financially secure than they did one year ago. However, only 17% of workers worry about the financial threat of becoming disabled and being unable to work. Their greatest concerns were tied to the economy, such as not being able to keep up with bills (55%), losing money in investments and savings (34%) and being laid off (20%).
"Many working Americans are not as concerned about the risk of a disability as they should be, says Feldman. What they don't know is that they stand a one-in-three chance of becoming ill or hurt and being out of work at least 90 days at some point in their career."
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