Nobody plans to get sick or injured, but in reality it isn’t always possible to prevent these things from happening. It is critical that you have a meaningful and tailored protection program in place for the financial security of either yourself or your family, if you are unable to work for a prolonged period due to an illness, accident or if you suffer a premature death. Having such a program in place will provide the Control, Certainty and Comfort at a time when you need to be focusing on your health, and not your finances.
Specialist Advice Services are passionate about ensuring that all our clients have the opportunity to make an informed decision on these matters. Ultimately we want our clients to be secure in the knowledge that properly considered plans are in place.
Your ability to earn an income is your biggest asset; without this ability it is difficult to lead a comfortable life and unlikely that you will achieve your financial goals. There are two specific situations where you need to secure an ongoing income:
The debt on your principal home is bad debt. It has no tax efficiency, repayments are made in post-tax dollars and for most, the repayments on their homes account for 25-40% of disposable income.
Having the ability to repay your mortgage has the same effect as increasing your income. It also means you will need less income to maintain your existing lifestyle.
Depending on your circumstances, there may be other debt that you would prefer to extinguish.
Debt such as credit cards, investment property loans, vehicle finance and business debt should all be considered when implementing a meaningful protection program. In addition, you may want to ensure any significant unexpected medical costs are covered should you suffer an injury or illness, to ensure you receive the best medical care possible.
Constructing a meaningful protection program requires specialist knowledge. Seeking advice will not only ensure that you have the right amount of cover, but also ensure that the structure of your program is beneficial to you.
It is often possible to structure cover through your Superannuation savings; there are advantages in doing so both from a tax and cashflow perspective.
Seeking advice will also ensure that the products that make up a meaningful program are complementary to each other, eliminating duplication of cost and coverage
Brian works full time as a construction manager with a well known building company. At age 45 he’s done well in his career and enjoys an income of $150,000 and a comfortable life with his wife Kaye and their two primary school aged children. With monthly commitments of $4,000/month for his mortgage of $600,000, plus school fees and other lifestyle commitments a lot rests on Brian’s shoulders to continue to provide an income.
Unfortunately, due to his love of the outdoors and many hours spent in the sun, Brian is diagnosed with a malignant melanoma that has shown signs of spreading. This results in him having to seek immediate treatment and to resign from his work. Brian has just lost his biggest asset – his ability to provide an income for him and his family.
Fortunately though, Brian and Kaye had taken the time to invest in a properly considered Personal Protection Plan for their family. Consequently after an initial waiting period of 30 days had elapsed a monthly income of $9,375 began to be paid to Brian; replacing 75% of his income, potentially continuing until he turned age 65.
After 6 months of treatment Brian had to face the fact that whilst there was progress treating the tumours it was unlikely that he would be able to return to work. Consequently his treating doctors assessed him to be permanently disabled.
As part of his protection program Brian had also agreed to implement Total Disability insurance for an amount equal to his mortgage of $600,000. This was to ensure that he could provide the certainty to his family of somewhere to live in the event of such an incident.Now, after being relieved of his mortgage payment burden and combined with his income protection benefits of $9,375/month, Brian and Kaye have a personal Cash Flow position similar to what he had prior to the diagnosis. Brian can concentrate on getting as well as possible without being under financial strain.
Some time later after a period of 5 years Brian’s cancer reemerges and he quickly passes away. His death is a tragedy for his family, especially Kaye who now needs to provide an income to support herself and the children. She had not returned to work since Brian had become unwell.
Fortunately as part of the personal protection program implemented years earlier Life coverage for an amount of $2,000,000 was in place. On receipt of these funds Kaye was able, with the assistance of her trusted advisers, to invest in a secure portfolio of assets that produced a 5% per annum return, or $100,000 per year.
This provided the ability to continue to meet her families expenses, school fees and lifestyle expenses and provided her the control and comfort that was needed at a difficult time.