Why is Critical Illness Insurance so Important in Financial Planning?
Think about the following scenario and apply it with adjustments to your situation:
You are in your early 30's and married for 5 years and your spouse is also in her early 30's. You have a son who is 5 years old. You both are doing very well with a joint household income of $125,000, a house worth $250,000 and mortgage of $175.000. You have a car financed with $18,000 in loans. You both have 401K's and fully pay for your son's education and possibly give him a nice gift of $10,000 upon graduation. You have diversified investments and now work with a financial adviser. You diligently save on monthly basis and can reach your goal in about 30 years... you have the "perfect" financial plan. Now, unexpectedly, you find out you have some type of cancer and cannot work for at least 18 months; that is predicated on the fact that you get the treatment right away. Your treatment options are either locally, or in Texas or on the West Coast in treatment centers that specialize in your form of cancer.
This is not a pleasant scenario to think about... but one that does happen with more frequency than you can imagine. It is estimated that 78% of all bankruptcies are medically-related...and most of the affected had health insurance. Here are some of the related costs that you might need to contemplate:
Treatment, Loss of income, Child Care, Premature withdrawal or loans from your 401K (you pay tax and of course, lose earning power), Travel & Accommodation Costs
There is a"good news" fix for this scenario...and that is purchasing a Critical Illness Insurance Policy that provides a lump sum payment that will allow you to cover these and other costs associated with your care...and getting you back to good health! The point here is that one unexpected event can cause the best financial plan, without insurance to be worthless. If you had Critical Illness Insurance... the monetary stress associated with your recovery would be alleviated... all at a reasonable cost. That is what insurance does, protect you and your loved ones from the "unexpected"events life throws at us!
What is the Most Overlooked Insurance Product for the "Gen Y" Population?
Most "Gen Y's," children and grandchildren of Baby Boomers, are busy paying down their student loans, planning vacations, working on their careers, and possibly starting families... the last thing they are thinking about is being waylaid by a disability. And yet, according to the Social Security website, studies show that 1 in 4 of today's 20 year olds will become disabled before reaching the age of 67! That is a stunning statistic!
As in so many other financial plans...financial planning is paramount...but "protection planning" is integral to any successful plan. Disability insurance, the most overlooked insurance product for this generation, protects you if you become sick, injured, or are out of work due to medically-related circumstances for an extended period of time. When we think of insurance, we think of protecting our possessions: cars, home, jewelry, vacations...but on of the most important thing we can protect is our ability to work!
Question: If you were to become severely sick, injured, or out of work for weeks, or months, how long would you be able to pay your monthly bills? What about a long term disability? According to the Council for Disability Awareness, the average duration for long term disability is 31.2 months...that's 2.5 years!
If your employer offers short and long term disability...it is very important that you take advantage of the same and sign up during open enrollment. Group policies offer rates that are much less expensive than indiviual policies. If however, you are a higher wage earner...group disability insurance only provides a percentage of your salary as a benefit. There are supplemental disability insurance plans that you might consider to maintain the quality of your life should this unexpected event happen.
So... all you "Gen Y's"...don't overlook this important protection of your income! Sign up for your group disability policy during open enrollment, look into supplemental disability policies if appropriate; and build up an emergency savings fund to cover those unexpected expenses...you will be very hapy you did!!!