Employer-Sponsored Disability Insurance: Where are the Gaps in Coverage?
I use data from the Current Population Surveys and Employee Benefits Surveys to analyze employer-sponsored disability insurance coverage. There does not appear to be a systematic trend from 1980 to 2000 in the fraction of workers with coverage. Disability insurance coverage rates are lower than health insurance coverage rates; low-skill, low-wage, low-tenure, part-time and small establishment workers are all less likely to have either of these fringe benefits. Public policy debates about workers without health insurance fail to consider an important economic risk these workers face in the event of an illness or injury: the risk of lost wages.