Finance Friday Lunch and Learn Review

Written By: Sara DeGrave

Sara is the current Personal Finance Chair of Marquette ASDA

On Wednesday, April 18, the ASDA Personal Finance Committee hosted Dr. Joe Varno for a Lunch and Learn about disability insurance. Dr. Varno graduated from the University of Minnesota School of Dentistry in 1985. However, in 2004, he became disabled from the active practice of dentistry due to carpel tunnel syndrome. Through this experience, he learned what to look for and what to watch out for when choosing an income protection policy. He was eager to share his advice with students!

                  If you couldn’t attend the Lunch and Learn, though, here are the major points from the meeting. After reading this, feel free him to email him at You can ask for a free book about disability insurance, the slides from the Lunch and Learn, or even an individual meeting. 

                  Advice and General Information regarding Disability Insurance

1.          Talk to a professional who knows the “in’s and out’s” of disability insurance for dentists

2.          Prepare to wait 3-4 weeks for the insurance to take effect from the time you apply

3.          If possible, stay away from lots of medical care (i.e. for issues regarding back pain, neurologic issues, etc.) before getting coverage, as this can affect the price of coverage

4.          If you haven’t had a specific medical issue in a while, however, there is a possibility that it can be dropped 

5.          In general, female dentists have higher claim issues than males (mainly due to pregnancy)

6.          Even if you reduce the number of days you work at the end of your career, you are still guaranteed the policy amount you originally bought (if you were to become disabled)

7.          If you must file a claim, it shouldn’t be necessary to hire an attorney 

8.          Make sure your disability insurance includes a non-cancellable rider, meaning that the company can’t cancel the contract/change the language once you’ve bought it

9.          Avoid contract language that allows the company to not pay a claim because you can still perform an occupation other than dentistry

10.     Make sure that the company you’re buying from has a history of paying claims 

Contact Sara at