Each year, Real Simple’s panel of personal finance experts recognize the most innovative, game-changing companies, products, or services in insurance, investing, banking, budgeting, and more. This year’s list included 32 winners who all debuted new or updated financial products between January 2021 and June 2022.
Previous winners of the Smart Money Awards include Venmo, Quicken Loans, Chime, and Credit Karma. Past insurance category winners include PolicyGenius, Lemonade, Ladder, and Bestow.
“We’re honored to be recognized by Real Simple and listed alongside other companies striving to protect the finances of Americans and their families. Breeze has brought income protection to the mainstream by taking it online and at a price point that fits your wallet. In the midst of rising inflation and economic uncertainty, securing your paycheck has never been easier."
Colin Nabity, CEO & co-founder at Breeze
Using Breeze, consumers can get quoted for disability insurance in seconds and apply in minutes – entirely online. Breeze also handles case management. The Omaha-based insurtech currently offers two long-term disability insurance products, short-term disability insurance, and critical illness insurance.
The short-term disability insurance product just recently launched on Breeze is the only such product to date with a 100% online experience and benefits for family medical leave.
"Disability is a crucial and under-insured risk. So many families' financial futures are upended by illness or injury. This [disability insurance] won't replace 100 percent of your income, but it can mean you keep your home during a health crisis."
Stephanie McCullough, financial planner, CEO at Sofia Financial, & 2022 judge
In addition to its direct-to-consumer channel, Breeze partners with insurance agents and brokers who can use Breeze’s proprietary platform to offer streamlined disability insurance to clients.
Disability insurance policies through Breeze can replace up to 60% of a person’s regular income if they suffer a qualifying disability that impacts their ability to work and earn a paycheck. Qualifying disabilities can include injuries like a broken hand, illnesses like cancer, or mental health struggles like depression or anxiety.
Benefits can last for weeks, months, years, or until retirement age and can be used for anything from mortgage or rent payments to groceries and phone bills.
Only 19% of US employees have access to paid leave and over 1-in-4 of today’s 20 year-olds will become disabled before they retire. Without disability insurance, most will have to face unpaid leave while they recover.
How long could the average consumer survive on unpaid leave? How long could they keep affording life’s expenses before turning to debt or a retirement account?
Despite these statistics, just 14% of Americans own disability insurance compared to 54% that own life insurance. This has become known as the “income protection gap,” which can largely be attributed to an outdated, convoluted application and underwriting process that kept both consumers and agents away from disability insurance.
That was before Breeze.
Breeze’s sole focus on disability insurance puts the Omaha-based insurtech in a unique position to solve the coverage gap through innovations that make income protection more easily accessible for both consumers and insurance distributors.
Breeze is an online insurance broker simplifying how disability and critical illness insurance are bought and sold. Leveraging industry expertise and innovative technology, our team is building a better way to distribute income protection insurance for life's most financially vulnerable moments — like cancer, heart attacks, and bad accidents. Policies offered through Breeze replace a portion of a policyholder's regular income and can be used to help with large medical bills, mortgage payments, groceries, and more. Breeze currently offers long-term disability insurance, short-term disability insurance, and critical illness insurance.
Director of Communications, Breeze