Living insurance, known as “critical illness”, “trauma” or “major medical”, is the policy that pays a lump sum if you are diagnosed and survive 14 days from an extensive list of over 48 medical conditions. It also pays a lesser sum, generally 20% or up to $100,000, on a secondary list of early stage conditions/ events. This money will enable you to fund care, rent/mortgage and all outgoings and will also allow you to retire any immediate pressing debt, fund unforeseen medical costs and it will allow you to focus on recovery without financial stress.
Once you are paid a full claim the policy ceases. Some policies offer a reinstatement of the contract after 13 months but do not ever cover again the condition that caused the original claim.
Introducing Asteron’s new ‘Continuous Trauma‘ benefit
Asteron has just released what I view as one of the most valuable upgrades to living insurance policies in the form of ‘Continuous Trauma’ benefit.
‘Continuous trauma’ benefit means the policy is not cancelled and continues to protect you for all other conditions. After three years the condition that caused the claim is also reinstated and this process can continue for two further claims during the course of the contract.
Let me give you a real life example of the value of ‘Continuous Trauma’
I am living proof of the value of this new upgrade benefit.
As many of my clients know, I had a heart attack in 2015 and three months later was diagnosed with unrelated cancer of the bladder. Had this contract extension been around then, I would have been paid out twice! (I am pleased to advise I am totally clear on both counts now.)
I am recommending to all my clients to add a ‘Continuous Trauma‘ benefit to their existing trauma policy.
In this newsletter I want to share with you a story that has forever affected the life of a valued KSL staff member. I have this person’s permission to share her journey with you; the bad, and also the good of her ordeal.
This tragic event could happen to anyone and is a reminder to all millennials and their parents who may be skeptical of the value and need for including insurance as part of their risk management programme.
For many years I have been strongly advocating that my business owner clients should consider the financial impacts of illness and/or disablement to key employees. My advice has always been that clients protect themselves and their staff with appropriate insurance on their key people.
My Journey to and from the Earthquake Claims Business
In September 2017 I decided to “wind down” my involvement in auditing and negotiating earthquake claims. If I am honest with myself, I just got sick and tired of what I regard as the unethical behavour of the insurance companies in managing earthquake claims.
In 2011 when I initially set up the claims audit business it was to help my own KSL clients. I expected that we would be all “done and dusted” within 12 to 18 months. The reality was, it ended up consuming me! The business diversified into a specialist claims audit business which I operated for almost six years.
With the successful integration of the new shareholders from the Maurice Trapp Group into KSL Insurance I am delighted to now be embarking on the continuation of my first love – Life Insurance Auditing. Helping clients (before they have their claims) through my Pre-Claims Audit.
What the earthquake sequence has taught me as an insurance veteran of 48 years, is that the principles of good faith and Insurance integrity vanish when a disaster strikes at the heart of the profitability of an insurance company.
….2018 was my 48th year in the insurance industry. Other milestones included:
I turned 65 in May 2018.
I achieved a 3 year clearance from my bladder cancer concerns – I am now out to a six-month surveillance program only.
In September 2017 I closed the claims audit business to new claims. Through 2018 we have “run off” the majority of the outstanding claims.
Concurrently I have refocussed the business on its core activity “Life Insurance Auditing”.
I finalised my business succession plan.
New Ownership Structure
At the start of 2018, I finally conceded that I was no longer immortal and that I had an obligation to my loyal and valued clients to develop a long term continuation strategy. I commenced in earnest the development of a business succession plan.
I explored several options, from employing a successor, bringing in a younger partner, through to an outright sale. My personal desire was to retain an active involvement within the industry and preferably within the KSL business so that I was able to continue to service my existing clients as I do not intend to retire.
There is much to do in Christchurch, but there is also much to do to ready ourselves properly, effectively and efficiently now, to ensure that the problems of Christchurch never again be the problems that any other New Zealanders needlessly has to endure.
The changes suggested need political intervention and a will from politicians to “do the right thing” for ordinary New Zealanders. Ask Your local Politician what they intend to do to fix this problem. – Kevin Seque