In this expert article, you can find out how disability insurance works, whether you also need a BU and what you need to pay attention to when taking out disability insurance. We have already helped hundreds of customers take out disability insurance and know all the pitfalls and mistakes you can make. After reading this article, no insurance broker can riot you. You know all the important points and clauses that are important in a BU!

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berufsunfähigkeitsversicherung bu versicherung 1024x641 1 - Disability Insurance - The Ultimate Guide (2020)

Wie funktioniert eine Berufsunfähigkeitsversicherung?

Eine Berufsunfähigkeitsversicherung sorgt dafür, dass, wenn du in deinem zuletzt ausgeübten Beruf nicht mehr arbeiten kannst und dadurch kein Einkommen mehr erzielst, über die Berufsunfähigkeitrente weiterhin ein monatliches Einkommen erhältst und dein Leben weiter auf deinem gewohnten Standard weiterleben kannst.

Dabei ist es unwichtig, ob du theoretisch noch einen anderen Beruf ausüben könntest.

Weiterhin ist es komplett irrelevant, ob ein Unfall, eine Krankheit oder mehr als altersbedingter Kräfteverfall zur Berufsunfähigkeit geführt haben. Die BU-Versicherung zahlt dann die vereinbarte Rente zu 100% aus, wenn du mindestens 50% berufsunfähig bist.

Dies gilt es natürlich nachzuweisen und obliegt in allererster Linie dir als Kunde. Durch Fragebögen vom Versicherer und Untersuchungen von Ärzten wird am Ende bewertet, ob du die Voraussetzungen für die Zahlung der BU-Rente erfüllst oder nicht.

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When are you unable to work?

As always, we try to explain the topic for you so simply and without insurance-German. But sometimes it doesn’t work without it. So here comes this first legally correct definition of occupational disability . You can find them like this (or something like that) in the general conditions of the insurers.

Incapacitated is anyone who is at least 50% restricted in the ability to pursue their occupation as it was last in healthy days, due to illness, physical injury or more than age-related loss of strength, for at least 6 months or a meaningful work result is no longer possible .

Your current job is always insured

In concrete terms, this means for you that your current job (= your last job) is insured. And this is where misunderstandings often arise.

You may have taken out your disability insurance back then as an office worker, but are now a landscape gardener. If you can no longer work as a landscape gardener for at least 50% for at least 6 months due to illness, physical injury or more than an age-appropriate loss of strength, you are unable to work.

In summary, this means that it does not matter which profession you took out your disability insurance for at the time. It is always your last activity insured before the onset of occupational disability.

What exactly do illness, bodily harm or more than age-related decline in strength mean?

Taken together, pretty much everything is covered that can somehow lead to a health problem. German courts do not allow much leeway when interpreting the terms either.

Here are a few examples for you to make it more tangible:

Illnesses that often lead to disability:

  • Cancer, or diseases of civilization in general
  • Burnout

Possible bodily harm:

  • Accidents of all kinds

More than age-appropriate decline in strength

  • This is a kind of additional safety buffer for the customer, should an occupational disability not clearly be due to illness or physical injury.

A combination of the three mentioned is also possible. So you notice that an occupational disability is super individual and there are umpteen possibilities and variations of how it can arise.

Restriction of at least 50%

Now we come to the 50% at which you can at least no longer carry out your job as a further requirement for paying the disability pension. You need this number both qualitative (Result of your work) as well quantitatively Consider (time spent on individual activities).

Time spent on individual activities

The time required is relatively easy to show. Here it is simply checked how much time you spend on individual activities have to muster. How long you work, for example, standing or sitting. This is then compared to the existing health restriction, or this is placed over it as a “template”.

If in the end it turns out that you can no longer perform your activities more than 50% of the time, then the definition would be fulfilled in this regard.

Result of your work

This is where things get a little more complex. The time spent on individual activities is no longer relevant, but that Result of your work . So it may be that you could still carry out 85% of the activities, but a single task that only takes 15% of the time is so important that the work result cannot be achieved because you no longer carry out precisely this activity can.

Another example makes it clearer:

Let’s say you work in the field as a sales representative. You are constantly on the move in the car and with customers. In terms of time, driving only accounts for approx. 20% and 80% of the time you advise customers, make offers, make phone calls, etc.

If you can (or are not allowed to) drive a car due to illness or an accident, then only 20% of your time expenditure would be affected, but since you can no longer drive to customers and they can no longer advise them, that is The work result itself can no longer be produced . So you would be more than 50% restricted in your work results. The disability insurance would pay you your disability pension.

Inability to work is expected to last for at least 6 months

Last but not least, you have to prove to the insurer that the present restriction of your professional activity is also for at least 6 months will exist.

It’s not that easy at all. Because a doctor will usually not lean that far out of the window and confirm this to you. Often it is not even possible for him to make a prognosis of this kind.

Fictitious forecast period

This problem is solved over a so-called “bogus forecast period”. Were you actually incapacitated for 6 months , the insurer assumes that you will probably continue to be unable to work in the future.

In practice, the latter is the most common. For you as an insured person, this means that you have to be able to financially bridge the first 6 months of your disability. This is usually possible through, for example, sick pay from the health insurance company or additional private daily sickness allowance insurance.

However, you will still receive your disability pension retrospectively from the 1st day the disability paid.

In order for a benefit case to run smoothly for you, the selection of the right insurer with a very good tariff and very good insurance conditions essential.

Who needs disability insurance?

A valid question! Do you even need disability insurance? Maybe you only have a safe office job? The latter in particular is a dangerous misconception. As always, you can also watch the following videos with us to find out more. Or you just keep reading.

Disability insurance simply explained

Do you also need BU insurance as an office worker?

Who needs disability insurance?

If you become incapacitated, the state pays, right? So why take out a separate disability insurance? This belief (unfortunately) still prevails in many minds.

The bitter reality is that you will receive exactly € 0.00 from the state (if you were born after 01.01.1961) if you are unable to work. The disability pension is then always confused with the state disability pension. There is actually a contribution from the state here. But not if you are unable to work, but you have to be partially or fully disabled. These are two completely different things, as you are about to learn.

When is the state disability pension available?

The partial or full disability pension is only paid if certain (very blatant) conditions are met.

  • you have paid into the statutory pension insurance for at least 36 months in the past 5 years
  • you can only go in for 3-6 hours any profession work (partly disability pension)
  • you can only go in for 0-3 hours any profession work (full disability pension)

To make this clear again: If you are an office worker and due to illness or an accident, you can at least If you no longer pursue a 50% job, then you would by definition be unable to work and would receive your agreed BU pension. Unless you’ve completed one. However, you would not be entitled to a disability pension, since you could also work as a doorman for more than 6 hours a day and operate a barrier at the push of a button.

How much is the disability pension?

This alone should actually suffice as an argument that there is no way around occupational disability insurance if you want to secure your standard of living. However, as a final argument I would like to add the average amount of the full disability pension. This was just about in 2017 € 716 per month .

It is therefore clear that even if you were to receive the disability pension, you could never live on it, let alone maintain your previous standard of living.

Anyone who cannot forego their earned income needs a BU insurance

This sentence actually sums it up very well. If you are incredibly rich or have passive income that flows without your intervention, then you may not need occupational disability insurance. But for everyone else, private disability insurance is the only way to maintain the standard of living you have developed in the event of disability. In other words, good disability insurance enables you and your family to continue to live in dignity. Without adequate income, social decline is inevitable. And certainly nobody wants that.

Even saving is not a solution

Now and then you hear about the idea that you can just put money aside every month. For example via a call money account or an ETF savings plan. Unfortunately, this does not work out. In doing so, it is forgotten that such a construct first has to run for several years before a sum is available that one can live on. And even if there is, the time horizon is very limited because the money will be used up quickly.

A small calculation example:

If you become incapacitated at the age of 50 and are unable to work until you retire at 67, you would need a total of € 408,000 in your savings account with a monthly requirement of € 2,000. And hardly anyone will be able to do that in this form.

What causes lead to occupational disability?

It is usually assumed that accidents are the main reason for occupational disability. Here you have the image of the roofer falling from the roof of the house. The reality looks completely different here too.

The main causes (2019) are mental illnesses and lifestyle diseases such as cancer. In other words: Approx. 50% of the causes that cause occupational disability can affect anyone. Regardless of how “risky” the job is. An extremely important fact to know.

How much does a BU insurance cost?

Before you take out disability insurance, of course, you want to know how much disability insurance costs. In fact, some people even go out and look solely at the price. Whether the chosen provider is really good and whether there is perhaps a reason why the provider is so cheap is not questioned. Needless to say, this is a completely wrong approach. But now butter for the fish:

What is the price of good disability insurance? How much can disability insurance cost for different professions?

It depends on your job

The monthly contribution of your Occupational disability insurance is made up of various influencing factors. One of them – and probably the most important – is the job that you were doing at the time of taking out disability insurance. Depending on whether this is classified as low-risk or high-risk by the insurer, you fall into a corresponding risk or tariff group. For example A1 or 4. The names vary from insurer to insurer. A bricklayer or a fitness trainer, for example, has a much higher risk class than an office worker and would accordingly pay a higher contribution.

Your age is also important

Your age at the time of taking out disability insurance is almost as relevant as your current job. In general, the following applies: the younger you are when you take out your disability insurance, the cheaper the premium. The older you are, the higher the contribution. That is why it is absolutely recommended to start at a young age (even as a college student or students) to deal with the topic of occupational disability. As clever as it is, so few people actually do it.

The amount of your BU pension

One factor that is probably relatively clear: the more BU pension you cover, the higher your contribution. But that doesn’t mean that you should cover less in order to save on premiums. On the contrary. If you take out disability insurance, you should always wear this here Disability pension (Video) secure what you really need in the worst case. Please note that from your BU pension also Taxes and possibly health insurance contributions are deducted .

The duration of your disability insurance

The longer the term of your BU insurance, the higher the premium. That makes sense too. Because the older you get, the higher the chance that you will be unable to work. Cancer and other diseases of civilization usually only strike at an advanced age. And a disease like cancer very often results in direct disability. That is why it is also advisable to always let your BU pension run until the current retirement age (2020: 67 years). Some brokers are happy to leave out a few years at the end in order to reduce the contribution. This is very dangerous and you as a customer should not fall for this “sleight of hand”. Because in the end you will have a BU insurance, but one with a coverage gap precisely when the risk of occupational disability is highest.

Real examples of “disability insurance costs” (2020)

Now that you know the factors influencing the price of disability insurance, let’s look at a few real examples from practice.

As you can see, the contributions vary greatly depending on the professional group. The business administration student gets away best, with just 50 € contribution for 1,500 € insured BU pension.

Conclusion on “This is how much an occupational disability insurance can cost”

Don’t wait too long to get disability insurance. The longer you wait, the more expensive the fee will be. This does not even include the risk of your health deteriorating over time. And if you are still a student, then you have the best cards to get a very cheap BU insurance, which you do not have to adjust later when you are really working. You stay in the risk group as you did when you graduated. Something that many people don’t know either.

Contribution dynamics in the BU make sense?

How much does disability insurance cost?

Change disability insurance makes sense?

What should you pay attention to when taking out a BU insurance?

When taking out disability insurance, there are a few points that you should definitely know and pay attention to. We have summarized these points for you in the following, so that you can talk to your advisor (or maybe at us ?) are prepared.

The sooner the better

As you have already learned above, your age is one of the most important factors influencing the contribution of your BU insurance. The younger you are when you graduate, the cheaper the contributions. Especially in relation to the long term of an occupational disability insurance, you can save several 1,000 € if you take out on time.

In addition, you are probably healthier and fitter at a young age than at an advanced age. Thus, an acceptance by the insurer without exclusions or premium surcharges is more likely.

It should also be mentioned that insurers do not calculate the premium based on your actual birthday, but usually on 01.01. one year is always the reference date here. This means that it can make perfect sense to take out BU insurance in the current year rather than waiting until the new year.

Choose the right insurer

That sounds easier than it is. It is therefore advisable to always bring a professional with you when you take out disability insurance. Compared to going it alone on Check24, this doesn’t cost you a cent more. The contributions here would be 1 to 1 identical to those of a “normal” insurance broker.

In addition to very good terms and conditions and terms and conditions, your BU insurer should also have very good financial strength. Insurance terms and conditions are regularly rated by rating agencies such as Franke & Bornberg (FFF as best rating) or MORGEN & MORGEN (5 stars as best rating). You should speak to your insurance broker about this if he is not already doing this himself.

In addition to these criteria, the service provided by the insurer and insurance broker also plays a major role. In other words, how will you be supported in the event of a benefit?

Do you close, for example about us an occupational disability insurance you will receive a upon completion BU certificate what you a Free initial legal consultation guaranteed in the event of a claim.

Choosing the right amount of the BU pension

Far too often we come across contracts in which a much too low BU pension was secured. Contracts with € 500 or € 750 are simply pointless, because you are still below the basic security with this pension.

You have to determine for yourself how much money you have to have available per month if you are no longer able to work next month. Add up your expenses, running costs, insurance contributions, retirement provisions, rent, etc.

Don’t forget that you may still want to go on vacation. Because occupational disability does not necessarily mean that you are sitting in a wheelchair and cannot do anything.

And one last note that most people do not know: If you are an employee and you are unable to work, then you no longer pay into the statutory pension insurance. This means that the longer you are unable to work, the less your entitlement to a statutory pension will be. And this, in turn, means that you must be able to top up your private pension plan if you become incapacitated. So do not make the mistake of calculating your disability pension too low and please do not see it as “emergency coverage”.

Yours Disability insurance is a safeguard for your existence how it looks today, here and now.

Do not link your BU insurance to a pension insurance

As nice as it sounds, in very few cases does it actually make sense to take out occupational disability insurance in combination with a pension insurance (basic pension). Some colleagues state that in the BU case, the insurer continues to pay the contributions for the pension insurance and that the contributions can also be deducted from tax. That is also correct so far.

Unfortunately, the following points are forgotten:

  • the contribution increases immensely through the additional contribution to the pension insurance.
  • Tax deductibility is only possible if the contribution to the pension insurance is paid in the legally prescribed ratio to the BU contribution.
  • When combined with a pension insurance, the taxation of the BU pension changes in the event of a benefit. You have to pay more taxes on your BU pension than if you had taken it out as a pure “solo BU”. This in turn means that you actually have to insure more BU pension in order to get the same payout as with a “solo BU”. And this in turn leads to a higher contribution.
  • you have to rely on the fact that the insurer that covers you against occupational disability happens to be the one who invests your money in the best, most profitable and most cost-effective way. This is unlikely to be the case. Hedging risks and investments should therefore always be separated.
  • If there is a financial bottleneck, you have a large, inflexible contract, which may force you to make your BU insurance premium-free and then no longer have adequate protection. If you have taken out the products separately, you can simply interrupt your pension insurance for the duration of the financial bottleneck, but you do not have to address your livelihood protection (BU insurance).

There are certainly a few more points that speak against such a combined contract for occupational disability insurance, but I think the arguments given should be sufficient.

The difference between the net and gross contribution should not be too high

In the case of occupational disability insurance, there is a net contribution (= payment contribution) and a gross contribution (= tariff contribution). This has nothing to do with taxes or the burro / Netto, which we know from wage payments. Rather, it is the case that the insurer offsets generated surpluses against the gross premium and this results in the lower net premium that you as the insured then really have to pay.

However, you should now ensure that the margin between the net and gross contribution is not too high. This could be a sign that the insurer might be a little more “optimistic” with its surpluses.

If the gross contribution is 100% or more above the net contribution, extreme caution is required. In our deliberations, we ensure that the gross premium is usually not more than 50% is above the net contribution.

What to do if you have previous illnesses

You may not have the “cleanest” medical record any more. Whether operations, broken bones or illnesses, many previous illnesses can make it difficult or even impossible to admit to an occupational disability insurer.

In case of doubt, you should always work with your advisor on a so-called anonymous advance risk inquiry Ask at several companies to check insurability in advance. So you don’t run the risk of receiving an official rejection because you “just made an application and wanted to see what happened”. This can end badly, as most insurers have rejections stored centrally in the insurer’s notification and information system (HIS) and all other insurers have access to them. And once you’ve been turned down, it’s nearly impossible to get disability insurance from another insurer.

For this reason, an anonymous advance risk inquiry is extremely important if the state of health is no longer perfect and insurability is questionable.

Mental problems as a knockout criterion

Experience has shown that in most cases, mental illness leads to rejection. Especially if these have only recently occurred or are currently still being treated. If you are currently undergoing psychotherapeutic treatment, no insurer will insure you. Incidentally, this also applies to many other ongoing treatments (e.g. physiotherapy)

Submit an anonymous advance risk inquiry – Here’s how

Which contractual clauses are particularly important?

In addition to the important points already mentioned, there are other special contract components that you should consider when taking out disability insurance.

Agree on a contribution dynamic

If you insure € 2,000 BU pension today, then in 15 years’ time it will no longer be “worth” € 2,000 in terms of purchasing power. We owe this to inflation. It is therefore extremely important that you incorporate what is known as a contribution dynamic into your contract that compensates for inflation.

The dynamic contribution increases your insured occupational disability pension and, accordingly, your contribution by the agreed percentage. As a rule, 2-3% makes sense here if you want to balance out inflation well.

You can also contradict this dynamic contribution during the term, so that you suspend a year, for example. Please note, however, that some insurers completely remove this dynamic from the contract if you contradict too often in a row. This should be avoided at all costs.

Agree on a performance dynamic

The performance dynamic works in a similar way to the contribution dynamic. However, this does not refer to your insured BU pension during the term, but comes into effect at the moment when your BU pension is paid out because you are unable to work.

If, for example, you have agreed a performance dynamic of 1%, the paid out BU pension increases by 1% every year. This also serves to compensate for inflation.

Unlike the contribution dynamics, the benefits dynamics cost something. The higher the selected percentage, the higher your contribution to the disability insurance. This also makes sense, as the performance dynamic is nothing more than a guaranteed increase in your BU pension in the event of a benefit.

Note additional insurance guarantees

In the case of occupational disability insurance, there are usually event-related and non-event-related additional insurance guarantees. This gives you the opportunity to adjust your BU pension upwards without the insurer asking you health questions again.

When you take out your disability insurance, you should be aware of the options for additional insurance so that you can use them later if your situation requires it.

Event-related follow-up insurance guarantees:

  • marriage
  • birth of a child
  • House purchase
  • Graduation
  • bigger raise
  • divorce
  • Change to self-employment
  • among others

Non-event-related additional insurance guarantees:

  • Increase in the BU pension after the 6th and 10th year of insurance

Follow-up insurance guarantees, especially non-event-related guarantees, differ from insurer to insurer. You should always use the Note deadlines , within which you can use an event-related subsequent insurance guarantee (usually within 6 months after the occurrence of the event). Mostly there are too Elevation Limits (e.g. € 2,500) up to which you can then increase your BU pension via a supplementary insurance guarantee.

No abstract references

The abstract reference is a term that still terrifies many. This means that despite being unable to work in the actual job, you can still be referred to another job. In the past, this was also quite possible because the insurers did not dispense with the abstract reference. Nowadays, however, this is the rule and every good insurer does without abstract references.

Choose a duration up to retirement age

The insurance and benefit duration of your disability insurance should definitely be applied for up to the current retirement age. For example, if you only take out BU insurance up to the age of 65, there will be a gap in coverage of 2 years. That may not sound like much at first, but if we take the € 2,000 from the above example again that you have as a monthly requirement, this would be € 48,000 that you have to “bridge” somehow. And again only very few will be able to do this.

Don’t be blinded by lower contributions

Unfortunately, some insurance brokers or online portals go there and reduce the final age from 67 to 65 years or even less in order to achieve a cheaper premium. Yes, it is correct, if you “steal” yourself at the end of a few years, then the fee actually becomes cheaper. But nobody asks why this is so.

And this is because, of course, your risk of becoming disabled increases with age and is highest between 50 and 67. In this way, you take your protection away in those years when the risk is highest!

So please don’t fall for this “sleight of hand” trick.

Forecast period and retrospective benefits

It is also important that your insurer estimates the shortest possible, so-called forecast period. The forecast period describes the length of time for which you will probably be at least unable to work. This period should be 6 months, but no longer. Because the longer this period, the more difficult it will be for you to get the BU service, as it is more difficult for the doctor, for example, to make a very long prognosis (of e.g. 12 months).

In addition, your BU insurer should also guarantee benefits retrospectively from the first day of disability. Of course, the examination of an occupational disability takes a certain amount of time. As soon as this is determined, you will get your BU pension paid out retrospectively.

Alternative to disability insurance

It is not always possible to take out disability insurance. Be it that the contribution is too high for your own professional group or that there are already too many previous illnesses.

In such cases, it makes sense to look into the alternative to occupational disability insurance.

We have this here covered in a detailed article.

Where should you take out disability insurance?

If you’ve read this far, you have probably realized that disability insurance is a very complex insurance product.

Unfortunately, it is not possible to find the right disability insurance from here with just a few clicks on the Internet. There are too many pitfalls for this, such as health questions, which are often answered too negligently and then in the end the insurer (rightly) does not pay.

So it is advisable to look for a competent insurance broker who you trust and who works the way you imagine.

If you are still looking for a BU expert, then you are very welcome to get one Online advice book with us (if there are currently available dates).

Here you can be sure that we will address all of the points mentioned in this article. However, we are happy to let our previous customers speak for us:

Alternative to disability insurance

It is not always possible to take out disability insurance. Be it that the contribution is too high for your own professional group or that there are already too many previous illnesses.

In such cases, it makes sense to look into the alternative to occupational disability insurance.

We have this here covered in a detailed article.

Where should you take out disability insurance?

If you’ve read this far, you have probably realized that disability insurance is a very complex insurance product.

Unfortunately, it is not possible to find the right disability insurance from here with just a few clicks on the Internet. There are too many pitfalls for this, such as health questions, which are often answered too negligently and then in the end the insurer (rightly) does not pay.

So it is advisable to look for a competent insurance broker who you trust and who works the way you imagine.

If you are still looking for a BU expert, then you are very welcome to get one Online advice book with us (if there are currently available dates).

Here you can be sure that we will address all of the points mentioned in this article. However, we are happy to let our previous customers speak for us:

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