The Own Occupation rider on a disability policy covers you if you are unable to perform the majority of the occupational duties that you have been trained to perform. This means you would receive disability benefits if you couldn’t work in your “own occupation” even if you were able to gain employment in another field. The Own Occupation rider is a nice benefit to have, but it’s not entirely necessary depending on your career and financial situation. If you work in a non-specialty field, don’t make the mistake of overpaying for this benefit. In most cases, there are very few disabilities that would leave you unable to perform the core duties of your occupation.
Zander Insurance offers the Own Occupation rider as an optional benefit in our disability plans. Dave Ramsey only recommends purchasing this benefit if you have enough room in your budget for the specialized coverage. If you’re still working to pay off debt or haven’t established an emergency fund, skip the Own Occupation rider and focus on reducing your debt and building wealth. Focus on these “must do” steps to secure financial stability and worry about the “nice to have” things later down the road.