Freelancers may not be eligible for a maternity leave benefit like some of your 9-5 friends, but you can still give yourself a financial cushion to enjoy your time with your newborn.
How? Disability insurance. But you need to plan ahead.
In order to be eligible for this benefit, you need to have the disability insurance before you become pregnant.
But if you fulfill this requirement, you will be considered disabled for about 6 weeks for a non-surgical birth, or 8 for a Caesarian (please note though that your waiting period applies first before the payments kick in). In addition, you may also be eligible for disability payments if you’re put on bed rest while pregnant.
There are two types of long term disability insurance: 30 days or 90 days, which denotes the length of time you need to be out of work before the payments kick in.
Mothers-to-be would want to choose the 30 day plan in order to be eligible, otherwise you will likely have recovered by the time the payments would start.
If you’re a spouse or partner of a mother-to-be, you should also consider buying disability insurance to give yourself peace of mind in case you have a separate illness or injury that makes you unable to work.
You can purchase disability insurance plans from a number of private insurance companies, including at Freelancers Union's National Benefits Platform. Plans will differ by the amount of coverage they provide and how long you’ll need to wait before you can collect benefits.
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Time with your newborn is precious. Give yourself financial peace of mind so you can savor it.