Probationary Period

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Definition - What does Probationary Period mean?

A probationary period is the time before an insurance policy can effectively cover a risk. This is usually between the approval of the insurance application and the actual date the coverage begins.

Insuranceopedia explains Probationary Period

For private disability policies, the probationary period is 15 to 30 days. This delay allows the insurer to review the application and verify the information the applicant has entered on it. Coverage begins after the contents of the application are vetted, and coverage is denied if there is any proof of fraud.

The probationary period should not be confused with the elimination period, during which the insured pays out of pocket before the insurance starts paying.


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