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Insurance Analysis

"You must gain control over your money or the lack of it will forever control you." --Dave Ramsey

An insurance Review is a comprehensive study of your existing insurance program and coverage with the goal of making sure your current coverage best meets your present need and goals.

An insurance review is not just about compiling a list of your insurance policies. It is about looking at the specific features of your current insurance coverage through the lens of what has changed in your life since you originally took out the policy. Insurance is about transferring risk to the insurance company in exchange for a fee. Getting and keeping the right amount and kind of insurance coverage at a fair price is critical to meeting your goals and objectives.

Life Insurance Review

In our grandparent's time, people bought life insurance policies and then placed them in a drawer of file and only thought about them when the annual payment came due or the insured person passed away. And that was usually fine.

Today, life insurance policies are more complicated and need to be monitored regularly like your retirement and investment portfolios. The goal is for your insurance to be there for your beneficiaries when they need it the most. Claims time is not a good time for surprises, and that's why it is important to regularly review your insurance program in the context of current needs and responsibilities so you can make any necessary adjustments to your coverage in advance of a claim.

An insurance review is an opportunity to identify any gaps or overlap in coverage that result from changes in your life since your last review. It will examine your coverage in the context of these questions:

  • Does your current coverage still meet your goals?
  • What type of policy do you have?
  • Are the beneficiaries still valid? Or should they be updated?
  • Is the ownership structure correct?
  • Are you paying a fair price? Or can you get similar coverage for less?
  • Are there any health issues or lifestyle decisions that could affect your policy?
  • Does your coverage offer any special benefits?

After the analysis is complete, you will have a clear picture of your current coverage and any shortfalls in your life insurance program. If we identify any gaps in your program, we will provide you with options to address the situation. If it turns out that after our analysis and review that your insurance program has you covered properly, then it is time well spent to know your loved ones are secure with the financial protection they deserve.

Long Term Disability Income Replacement Coverage (LTD)

Long-term disability income replacement coverage is an important part of your insurance program. Your ability to work and earn a paycheque is your greatest asset.

What would happen if you were unable to work and earn a living due to accident or illness? How would you pay your bills and living expenses? Could you maintain the lifestyle you've worked so hard to achieve?

Employer Group Long-Term Disability Income Replacement Insurance (LTD)

Many people have coverage through their employer's benefit program which feels good and provides employees a sense of security. However, each employer's plan is customized by the insurance company to keep claims costs low and meet the needs of the employer first, which means that they often do not fully meet the needs of the employee. To keep costs low for the employees and employers, these plans often have a low cap on nonmedical coverage that is far less than the employee needs. These details are found in the employee handbook that every employee receives when hired. Part of our analysis involves reading the fine print in your employee handbook and then explaining in real numbers how much coverage is provided by your group plan.

From experience we have found that entry level positions are well served by employer group insurance programs as new hires entering the workforce do so at the lower end of the compensation range. As you progress in your career and experience higher earnings, there is more at risk and often a mismatch in coverage provided relative to your need. Therefore, it is important to regularly review your long-term disability income replacement coverage. When you get a raise, promotion, large bonus or change employers it is wise to revisit your coverage in the context of your increased compensation.

Individual Long-Term Disability Income Replacement Insurance (LTD)

Individual long-term disability income replacement insurance is often owned by executives and professionals to top up their employer group coverage as well as by business owners who are usually not covered by their employee group plans. Each plan is customized by the advisor to best meet the individual's needs, values and budget. The definition of disability included in the individual long-term disability income replacement contract is more favorable for the insured individual and coverage is portable, meaning that when you change employers or are in-between employers you are still covered.

A disability income replacement coverage review is an opportunity to understand how your current coverage would work in the event you were not able to work due to accident or illness. It will identify any gaps or overlap in coverage that result from changes in your life since your last review.

It will examine:

  • The type and amount of coverage.
  • How much of your income is insured?
  • Is there a cap on coverage?
  • The taxation status of the income benefit.
  • Does your current coverage meet your needs?
  • What is the definition of disability? (Own occupation vs Regular occupation vs Any occupation)
  • Does the definition of disability change after 2 years to any occupation?
  • Does your coverage help you save for retirement while on claim?
  • Does your coverage allow for a top up should you be able to return to work part-time?
  • Is your coverage integrated with government benefits or can you collect both?
  • Who owns and controls your policy?
  • Is your coverage non-cancellable or is it renewable?
  • Is your coverage portable if you change employers?
  • Are you paying a fair price?

After the analysis is complete, you will have a clear picture of your current coverage and any shortfalls in your long-term disability income replacement program. If we identify any gaps in your program, we will provide you with options to address the situation. If it turns out that after our analysis and review that your insurance program has you covered properly, then it is time well spent to know your lifestyle is protected with the coverage you deserve.

Critical Illness Insurance Review

Critical illness coverage is an important part of your insurance program. It is different from long-term disability income replacement coverage because your illness need not result in a long-term disability in order to receive a payout. Instead, if you are diagnosed with one of a variety of life threatening critical illnesses and survive a minimum number of days (ranging from 31-91 days) from the date the illness was first diagnosed, the policy will pay a tax free lump sum payment.

The value of this type of coverage is that the money can be used for anything you choose. Some claimants have used the funds to pay for treatments not covered by their Provincial Health Coverage plan, others used it to pay daily living expenses so that they could focus on getting well instead of trying to keep working at their job to pay those bills and others have used it to assist with travel and accommodation expenses involved with getting to their treatment centres. And some have used it to pay for a vacation as a restful place to recuperate with friends or family.

Thankfully, only about 30 – 50% of the population will experience a qualifying critical illness in their lifetime. Those who do not can benefit from a unique refund feature available on some critical illness insurance policies. It provides for the refund of all or part of the premium payments made after a certain period of time as outlined in the contract, usually 50% at year ten, graded up to 100% at year 15.

A critical illness insurance coverage review is an opportunity to understand how your current coverage would help keep your finances healthy in the event of a critical illness. It will identify any gaps or overlap in coverage that result from changes in your life since your last review.

It will examine:

  • The type and amount of coverage.
  • Does your current coverage meet your needs?
  • What illnesses are covered?
  • Are you paying a fair price?
  • If you cancel your coverage, can you get your money back?
  • If your policy offers a return of premium, when will it qualify and how much will you get?

After the analysis is complete, you will have a clear picture of your current coverage and any shortfalls in your critical illness protection. If we identify any gaps in your program, we will provide you with options to address the situation. If it turns out that after our analysis and review that your Critical Illness coverage program has you covered properly, then it is time well spent to know your lifestyle is protected with the coverage you deserve.