Good Disability Insurance Choices Can Lead to Good Outcomes

You have many choices to weigh when you apply for and maintain CDSPI DisabilityGuard™ Insurance. Dentists who make the right choice are often very thankful for it. These are some hypothetical scenarios* using fictional names that are based on our long experience with dentists. They illustrate the advantages you can gain by choosing insurance options wisely.


Stay current

When Dr. Smith graduated in 2008, she maintained her disability insurance through the CDSPI Student Insurance Program, but she remained at the base benefit level of $2,000 per month. Ten years later she was married with two children, and her income had grown to over $225,000 a year. Fortunately, a colleague reminded her about keeping disability insurance in line with her income and she raised her coverage to $8,500 per month. Half a year later, she was involved in a car accident that left her with a broken collarbone. She experienced total disability and couldn’t practice for six months, but fortunately she had remembered to increase her insurance, so she received the $8,500 per month benefit.


Think ahead

Dr. Lee took the Future Insurance Guarantee (FIG) option when he applied for disability insurance at age 31. A few years later he was diagnosed with a manageable form of congenital heart disease. As a periodontist with a growing income, he wanted to increase his coverage twice while in his 40s.1Because he had FIG, he was able to do this without medical evidence of insurability, which would have left him ineligible for an increase because of his pre-existing condition.


Choose the right elimination period

A recent graduate, Dr. Mann, was trying to decide which elimination period (the waiting time to satisfy before you can collect benefits) to choose for her DisabilityGuard™ Insurance. With a limited budget, and huge student debt payments, it made sense to go for the longest period, 120 days, to get the lowest premium. However, an insurance advisor pointed out a couple of things that changed her mind: 1. With debt payments and other expenses, it would be extremely difficult to get through a 120 day elimination period without income if she couldn’t practise; 2. If she chose a longer elimination period and wanted to shorten it at a later date, she would need to take another medical to make the change.


Don’t make the wrong assumption

Practice owner, Dr. Paul, had to miss four months of work due to an arm injury. He was surprised to learn his office coverage, TripleGuard™ Insurance, only replaced lost income if his practice had to close for a reason such as a fire or flood. He needed disability insurance to get benefits for lost time due to an injury.


Keep up with inflation

Dr. Son included the Cost of Living Allowance (COLA) option when he applied for DisabilityGuard™ coverage. At age 57, he was diagnosed with a severe herniated disc and was no longer able to practise. Because he took the COLA option, after 12 months of total disability, his benefits increased with The Consumer Price Index, and will continue to do so, up to a maximum of 8% per year, until age 65.


It’s easy to do the math

Dr. Watt had to decide between step or level premiums for her DisabilityGuard™ Insurance when she started to practise. The step premium would be lower at first but would continue to rise every five years until she retired. She used CDSPI’s DisabilityGuard™ calculator to make a comparison and found she would save tens of thousands over her career with a level premium which would remain the same until age 65. She also used the calculator to compare costs for variables such as different elimination periods and the addition of the Future Insurance Guarantee (FIG) and Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) options.



CDSPI’s DisabilityGuard™ Insurance plan provides dentists with coverage and options to help protect their lifestyle and family. To learn more about the plan, or to adjust your current plan, contact us at 1.800.561.9401 or



Renata Whiteman

Senior Advisor, Insurance

CDSPI Advisory Services Inc.

1.800.561.9401 ext. 6806




Insurance advisory services are provided by licensed advisors at CDSPI Advisory Services Inc. Restrictions to advisory services may apply in certain jurisdictions. The information contained here is only a summary. A full description of DisabilityGuard™ coverage and eligibility, including restrictions and limitations, is contained in the certificate booklet, which sets out all the coverage terms, conditions and provisions.

*The names and specific circumstances outlined in this article are strictly fictional in nature.

1Proof of income is required when applying for an increase.

DisabilityGuard™ Insurance is underwritten by The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company (Manulife), PO Box 670, Stn Waterloo, Waterloo, ON N2J 4B8. DisabilityGuardTM is a registered trademark of CDSPI.