AFLAC: Ask about it...
However, for those who don't necessarily understand what AFLAC is; in short, it is a supplemental insurance policy that pays a fixed amount of money based upon incident, accident, or illness (depending which policy you have) regardless of health insurance coverage or personal income. I have AFLAC coverage at work, and the ads for the product have been bugging the hell out of me lately, simply because it is not what they say it is. The ads explain how AFLAC "gives you cash" while you're out of work to pay your cable bill, rent, little Susie's piano lessons, or whatever the hell you want.
It is true that AFLAC does send you a check based on a claim, and they do not dictate how you spend it. What they don't want you to know is this. First, the requirements are very specific, so in order to receive a claim payment you have to submit some very particular and involved paperwork, including specific itemized documentation regarding every element of treatment, hospitalization, surgeries, dates, etc. Now, I understand their desire to prevent fraud, so they need proof you were actually hospitalized; however, they're asking for documentation that typically hospitals and doctors do not provide. Thus, you either have to fight with a hospital bureaucrat and get nowhere, or usually, depending on the hospital, the itemized bill is enough. But, if you know anything about hospital billing, you know that they're going to file the insurance claim, wait for them to pay, then send you a bill for what you owe. Sometimes this process can take months and in most cases you're back to work when you begin receiving those bills, and/or that statement you need for AFLAC submission.
Second, both your doctor and your employer have to complete separate statements verifying that you were out, for how long, when you were released, and when you returned to work. Look at that carefully. You have to have verification of how long you were out and when you returned to work to file your claim with AFLAC. Thus, AFLAC cannot pay you while you're out of work because you can only file the claim after your doctor and employer have separately verified in writing how long you were out, and when you returned. I won't even go into the pud-pulling-fest of getting the doctors office to complete the paperwork, but I digress.
After you get all the stuff together, send it, and they approve it--they pay the claim somewhere between 2 weeks and a month--which isn't bad. So all that being said, why do keep the coverage? Well, when medical bills are rolling in and you've exhausted your MSA or Section 125 plan for the year, the little extra money does indeed help cover the gap. Or, if your employer's disability policy only pays 60% of your income, like most, then, again, the extra does help. Just know that it won't be enough to pay for all the stuff the advertisements imply and the paperwork prevents you from receiving the checks to pay those living expenses while you're out of work.