No matter how careful you are, accidents can happen when you least expect them.
A slip on an icy sidewalk, a fall from a ladder or a common sports injury can happen at any time. And beyond the injury, the cost of paying for an accident can be a serious pain.
Medical expenses are one of the biggest financial hardships for Americans every year. Accidents are no exception to these expenses: Americans visit the doctor on average 68.2 million times a year to treat injuries.
Beyond covering medical expenses, your injury could put you at risk of missing work, which adds to the stress of paying your mortgage, utility bills, and putting food on the table for your family.
Most Americans don’t have a rainy-day fund to cover unexpected medical expenses when accidents strike — 6 in 10 Americans don’t even have $500 in savings. That’s where accident insurance comes in.
Accident insurance can be a safety net to help cover medical and non-medical expenses that accompany an accident. This coverage can be a huge relief during an already financially stressful time for you and your family.
But what exactly does accident insurance cover during your time of need?
From medical bills to rent and groceries, here’s what an accident insurance plan covers and how it can help you get back on your feet quicker.
What is accident insurance?
Accident insurance is supplemental to your primary health plan that helps you pay for out-of-pocket medical and non-medical costs from an accident or injury.
Accident insurance provides lump-sum cash benefits that are paid directly to you, and not the doctors and hospitals, on an indemnity basis.
You can use this cash to cover any expenses related to your accident — including non-medical expenses like childcare, transportation to a therapist, and even rent or groceries.
Even if your health plan covers 100% of your accident, your benefits are still payable to you. You decide how best to use the funds – for medical expenses like treatment or medication, or to supplement loss of work and other bills.
What does accident insurance cover?
The benefit amount you receive depends on the diagnosis and severity of your injury, how your injury was treated, and the type of coverage you have.
But with accidents that are covered by your plan, your coverage goes with you from start to finish.
For example, if you break your leg mountain biking, you’ll receive a lump sum to pay for the ambulance, the emergency room visit, and any other out-of-pocket medical expenses covered by your plan.
Your dependent children can benefit from accident insurance, too. If the plan has a child organized sports benefit, if your active tyke gets hurt playing their favorite organized sport, your benefit payout may be increased by 20% to help cover the costs.
What isn’t covered by individual accident insurance?
Some high-risk recreational activities or sports may not be covered by your plan, such as skiing, scuba diving or bungee jumping.
Though each accident insurance plan is different, here are some injuries which may not be covered by your plan:
- Injury from sickness or disease
- Reckless or dangerous activities
- Injuries that occur while under the influence of certain drugs or alcohol
- Suicide or self-inflicted injury
- Injury incurred while committing a crime
- Injuries incurred before you bought your accident insurance plan
Accidents don’t discriminate — anyone can have one at any time. But there are some Americans who can benefit even more from accident insurance. And if you’re a senior, an active adult, or if you drive a car, that could include you.