Can Disability and Accident Coverage Serve as a Workers’ Comp Substitute?

April 3, 2014 Insurance Topics 6

Sometimes I just don’t get it.

An article published today in Insurance Journal, which looks more like a copied Aflac news release than a news article, says that employers who offer accident and disability coverage see reductions in workers’ compensation claims.


Maybe I am naïve, but I thought work-related incidents were why workers’ comp existed in the first place. The article, based on a study of 600 employers, is clearly a marketing tactic to get employers to buy what Aflac offers. But does this approach, even if legal, mean employers and employees are giving up their rights under workers’ comp laws?

I have so many questions. Is it even legal to apply for non-occupational disability coverage for work-related incidents? What is the medical care like? Do the employees get the immediate sports medicine approach to health care with the best doctors? How soon do these workers return to the job?

You don’t see those questions  — or the answers  — in the article. Nor do we know how much the Aflac coverage goes up from higher claim filings. Does anyone have any idea how this works? Please let me know!