The impact of disability

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The likelihood of disability increases as we age while income decreases and expenses rise.


While most Americans insure their lives and physical possessions such as their homes, cars, etc., many overlook the need to protect their most valuable asset ― the ability to earn an income.

How likely is it that someone will become disabled? The table below, developed using data collected by the federal government, shows the number of working-age Americans who have a disability that affects their daily lives.

Individuals with disabilities by age1

Age Range
No Disability
With a Disability
5-17 Years
18-34 Years
35-64 Years
65-74 Years
75 Years and over

Income down, expenses up

The graph below illustrates the problem typically faced by an individual who becomes disabled for an extended period of time – income decreases while expenses increase.

1 Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2022 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates, Sex-by-Age-by Disability Status for the civilian non-institutionalized population, male and female. Table B18101

These materials were reproduced with the permission of Advisys, Inc. No State Farm® entity prepared these materials nor does State Farm represent or warranty the opinions or statements expressed therein. These materials are being provided for information purposes only.

The information in this article was obtained from various sources not associated with State Farm® (including State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company and its subsidiaries and affiliates). While we believe it to be reliable and accurate, we do not warrant the accuracy or reliability of the information. State Farm is not responsible for, and does not endorse or approve, either implicitly or explicitly, the content of any third party sites that might be hyperlinked from this page. The information is not intended to replace manuals, instructions or information provided by a manufacturer or the advice of a qualified professional, or to affect coverage under any applicable insurance policy. These suggestions are not a complete list of every loss control measure. State Farm makes no guarantees of results from use of this information.

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