Single and never married employees(1) are much less likely to have life insurance and disability insurance, yet the majority of those currently enrolled in these benefits say they will be important to them in the next five years. That's one of the findings of a recent online nationwide survey(2) commissioned by Colonial Life & Accident Insurance Company and conducted by Harris Interactive.®
The survey queried full-time employed adults who are currently enrolled in benefits and revealed the following:
Only 39 percent of single and never married employees have life insurance, compared to 61 percent of all employees. Yet 74 percent of single and never married employees who have life insurance rate it as important, very important or extremely important to them in five years.
Only 26 percent of single and never married employees have disability insurance, compared to 42 percent of all employees surveyed. Yet 71 percent of single and never married employees who have disability insurance rate it as important, very important or extremely important to them in five years.
These findings indicate many single and never married employees could be at increased financial risk, says Randy Horn, president and CEO of Colonial Life. With most companies offering open enrollment for benefits now, employees have a good opportunity to review their benefits and make decisions about any additional coverage they may need.
"Although most single employees don't have anyone depending on them financially, they still need life insurance to help pay for final expenses and any outstanding debt such as credit cards or mortgages," says Horn. "And single employees place themselves at considerable financial risk if they're not insuring their income with disability insurance. If an illness or injury caused them to be unable to work, they couldn't pay their everyday living expenses for long and don't have a spouse to rely on for help."
Horn emphasizes the importance of benefits education and counseling for employees. He recommends workers carefully review their benefits options and ask questions so they can make the most informed decisions about their coverage.
About Colonial Life -Colonial Life & Accident Insurance Company is a market leader in providing insurance benefits for employees and their families through the workplace, along with individual benefits education, advanced yet simple-to-use enrollment technology and quality personal service. Colonial Life offers disability, life and supplemental accident and health insurance policies in 49 states and the District of Columbia. Similar policies, if approved, are underwritten in New York by a Colonial Life affiliate, The Paul Revere Life Insurance Company. Colonial Life is based in Columbia, S.C., and is a subsidiary of Unum Group. For more information about voluntary benefits, call Colonial Life at (803) 798-7000 or visit www.coloniallife.com.
Harris Interactive Survey Methodology -Harris Interactive® administered the online study on behalf of Colonial Life between June 3 and 7, 2010, via its QuickQuery(SM) online omnibus service. Harris Interactive interviewed a nationwide sample of 2,071 U.S. adults aged 18 years and older who were employed full-time and enrolled in an employer-provided or spouse's benefits plan. Data were weighted using propensity score weighting to be representative of the total U.S. adult population on the basis of region, age within gender, education, household income, race/ethnicity, and propensity to be online. No estimates of theoretical sampling error can be calculated; a full methodology is available.
(1) For the purposes of this survey "employees" were defined as U.S. adults ages 18+ who are employed full time.
(2) Colonial Life & Accident Insurance Company/Harris Interactive Survey, June 3-7, 2010.