Earnable Income Quotient (EIQ)

EIQ stands for “earnable income quotient.” Your EIQ estimates how much income you will likely earn before you retire.

Click here for more information about how to calculate your EIQ.

Effective Date

The effective date is the day your policy becomes enforceable.

Click here for more information on effective dates.

Elimination Period

An elimination period is a period of time that must pass before the insurer will begin paying you your monthly benefit. Under most policies, the elimination period will not start to run until the insurer has established that he or she is disabled. Some policies also require the elimination period to be satisfied by consecutive days of disability. Most individual disability policies have an elimination period somewhere between 90 and 180 days.

Click here for more information about elimination periods and how long it can take to get benefits. 

Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA)

ERISA is a voluminous federal statute that governs disability claims filed under employer-sponsored disability policies.  If your disability claim is governed by ERISA, it is typically much more difficult to convince the insurer to approve your claim.

Click here for a detailed discussion of the negative aspects of ERISA.

Employer-Sponsored Disability Insurance Policies

This type of policy is typically the least expensive disability insurance policy.  This is in large part due to the fact that these policies are governed by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) and typically contain provisions that make it difficult for an insured to collect disability benefits in the event he or she has to file a disability claim.

Click here for a detailed discussion of the different types of disability policies and the disadvantages of employer-sponsored policies.

Examination Provisions

Requirements under a policy that allow an insurer to require claimants undergo certain examinations or submit to testing, often medical examinations, financial examinations, and/or personal interviews. Over time these provisions have become more stringent, specific, and far-reaching, and most policies now state that a failure to attend a requested exam or interview provides the company with a basis for terminating your claim. At the same time, certain types of in-person exams may not be appropriate in a particular claim, either because the policy does not permit that type of exam or the exam is not reasonable under the circumstances.

Click here for more information about what to do if your insurer requests an in-person exam.


In the context of a disability policy, exclusions are specific conditions that are not covered by the policy.  For example, most policies will not provide benefits for disabilities that arise from war, the commission of a felony, or self-inflicted injuries.  Insurers will also commonly exclude preexisting conditions that are identified by an applicant’s medical history report or physical exam.