The Importance Of Income Protection

 

Imagine getting ready for the rest of your life, just married, moved into the house of your dreams and you receive a medical diagnosis that stops everything.

That’s exactly what happened to Nigel and Belinda Shedden, as reported by the ABC last month, when Mr Shedden was diagnosed with multiple myeloma and had to give up work. They are now living with Mr Shedden’s mother in a small apartment, have sold their house and are surviving on a disability support pension and occasional food vouchers. Mr Shedden’s mother has had to return to work from retirement to help the family.

 

 

The message in the article is that most Australians are just one critical health event away from financial stress and even poverty and Mrs Shedden’s message is to make sure you have all the right insurances in place, especially income protection and TPD.

The reality is that most Australians don’t have enough savings in place to get them through more then two or three months if they suffer a major injury or health event. And while superannuation usually has some form of life and/or TPD insurance associated with it, it doesn’t usually have income protection insurance and the insurance is often generic (not fitted to individual circumstances) and so requires the member to make some decisions/elections so the cover is more suitable for them. Most people don’t engage in this process and so end up with the base level cover the Super Fund puts in place.

If you were to find yourself in this situation, it’s not just basic living expenses like groceries, car repayments and rent that you might struggle to meet. Many people who find themselves in financial distress because they are on the wrong end of a debilitating injury or illness also struggle to access the health care they require because they can’t afford to go outside the public health care system.

 

 

None of us wants or expects to get seriously ill or suffer a debilitating injury that prevents us from earning an income. But the sad reality is that it can happen to anyone at any time. In Australia we are fortunate to have access to high quality, affordable insurance products that can be tailored to individual financial and personal circumstances and can help to protect against such an outcome.

Whether it’s income protection insurance, total and permanent disability insurance or critical illness insurance, there are a range of products to help protect you if you experience an event like Mr Shedden.

Insurance can be a tricky and complicated product and not all insurances are equal. If you think that income protection insurance or a similar product might be for you, then it is wise seek advice from a reputable insurance advisor/broker to talk through your individual circumstances and tailor an insurance package that works for you and your family, and protects against the possibility of that critical event.

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