Preparing for a sudden leave of absence is different than not being able to work due to the pandemic, even though they are both considered emergency situations. What if you need to take a sudden leave of absence from your esthetic practice due to an accident or illness?
We never think anything will happen to “us” – so preparing for a sudden leave of absence isn’t usually top of mind. Recent events with Covid-19 has taught us otherwise. We are stronger and wiser.
Recently, I was speaking with an esthetician who needed surgery and the doctor instructed her to take 6-8 weeks off of work post-surgery. She’s the primary source of income for her family and she didn’t have a plan.
Here are some things that you can proactively do to prepare for a sudden leave or any emergency:
Create An Emergency Fund
Create an emergency fund for life’s unexpected events. We never know what is going to happen and it’s always less stressful knowing that you have money set aside if you need it.
Start a small fund and be consistent each month with savings. Save $1,000 as your first goal. Put your emergency fund in an account that isn’t easily accessible but it should be liquid.
Know the difference between an emergency and non-emergency so that you don’t spend it on something like a vacation.
Pay off any debt and keep building your emergency fund until you have three to six months of expenses saved. Save even more if you can do it.
Most estheticians are solo practitioners — if you don’t work you don’t get paid. Not having income could be devastating if you don’t have an emergency fund, a plan, or insurance coverage.
Let’s take a look at a couple of insurance examples to help you in the event you need to take time off of work for an extended period of time.
I will also provide you with a Liability Insurance example while we are on the subject!
Finding the Right Insurance Coverage For Your Esthetician Business
Here are a couple of insurance policies to consider for your esthetic business:
Disability Insurance For Estheticians
Disability insurance provides income to insured estheticians if they’re unable to perform services due to sickness or disability. This type of insurance covers a sudden leave of absence and provides you with income during the time you are unable to work.
It’s important to protect your pay, whether you’re the bread-winner in the family or not. Disability insurance helps you pay bills if you need to take time off from work.
Disability insurance was not available to estheticians and spa practitioners in the past. You do have options today so you and your family are covered for an unexpected illness, emergency surgery, or maternity leave.
Short Term And Long Term Disability Insurance
There are a variety of organizations that offer different types of disability insurance policies. Each has specific rules and definitions on what constitutes a disability and how a person might qualify to receive benefits.
There are two types of disability insurance: short term and long term. Short term disability insurance policies offer a portion of your income if you’re unable to work for a short period (e.g., three to six months.) Long term disability insurance gives you a portion of your income if you can’t work for a longer period, typically over six months.
After you have purchased a policy, there’s an elimination period before the insurance can take effect. Also, more expensive policies often have more liberal definitions of what constitutes “disabled” so it’s important to review your options carefully so you can choose one that’s right for your needs.
Liability Insurance for Your Esthetic Business
Professional liability insurance, also called errors and omissions insurance (E&O insurance,) covers claims against a business that provides professional and personal services — including esthetician businesses.
Did you know that skin lifting and burns from waxing are the common reasons for injury claims in our beauty industry? Accidents happen to the most skilled esthetician using the best products! Liability insurance protects you if something goes sideways with a chemical peel or your client develops a reaction to a skincare product.
Liability insurance for your esthetician business can also cover the business aspects of running a salon or spa, especially with regards to handling client files and sensitive data.
However, keep in mind that liability insurance covers only what your state board allows a professional to practice under your esthetic license. For this reason, you should only perform services within your scope of practice.
If you’re a spa owner with a team, I recommend requiring each employee to carry their own liability insurance. You should also find out whether your insurance policy covers your employees and to what extent. Double-check with your policy that all of your services are covered.
Get Insurance And Be Prepared
There are many things to juggle when you’re running an esthetician practice and getting an insurance policy may not be top-of-mind. It is important to find the best coverage for you to protect yourself, your business, and your family.