Video and Transcript 11: The Mental Nervous Benefit
In addition to the four key components to a disability plan, there is one benefit that requires further discussion and clarification, which is the mental and nervous provision in your policy. It applies to affective behavioral disorders, neurosis, psychosis, depression, alcohol abuse and substance abuse. At one time this benefit was limited to two years for all specialties, meaning that if you were unable to perform your material and substantial duties as a result of any mental and nervous disorder you would only have two years of benefits for your lifetime. It was the industry’s response to the nationwide surge of mental and nervous claims filed by physicians due to the sudden oppression of healthcare reform in the mid 1990s. Recognizing that the next generation of physicians have grown accustomed to manage care, the industry has returned to offering fully covered mental and nervous benefits for most specialties. If you are an anesthesiologist or emergency medicine physician, currently, this benefit is still limited to two years. However, the majority of companies will offer full mental and nervous benefits for the entire benefit period for all other specialties. These include Guardian, Ohio National, Principal and Standard. Ameritas has a five-year lifetime benefit. Mass Mutual is unique in that it has a two year per incident Mental Nervous Benefit for all specialties. Reviewing this benefit in your analysis will help you discern depending on your specialty and the cost of the insurance which carrier you may prefer for your protection. You may also want to consider your family history as it relates to any genetic predisposition to a potential mental and nervous claim.