Occurrences of disability, illness on the rise

Now is the time to take control of those ‘risks’ that could derail all of your dreams in one split second. Whether you are in your 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s or older, let me educate you and give you some knowledge that is prudent for everyone to know.


• Pay off your loans

• Pay off your mortgage

• Fund your children’s education

• Live your retirement years how you dreamed it would be

• Obtain 24/7 care for a loved one or yourself if need be

• Leave your family, or create a legacy when you’re gone

• Never run out of money

Earnings by Age 65

Let’s have a look at a 25-year-old man who now earns $30,000. We will assume an increase of 2.5% every year. By the time the 25 year old is 65 they would have earned $2,022,077. How about a 35 year old earning $70,000. At 65, they would have earned $3,073,189.

A 40 year old who is earning $120,000 per year with the same 2.5% annual increase would earn $4,098,932 by age 65.

Canadians’ don’t think twice when insuring their cars, homes and belongings. But what about insuring your health/ability to earn an income. If you or your partner suffered a serious illness, could you continue to pay your mortgage, hydro, transportation, education, hospital/nursing/medication or even food. Sadly, many families are vulnerable if an unexpected illness or disability comes knocking on the door. As getting sick isn’t something any of us like to think about. But it can happen.

Statistics Show:

• Approximately 1/3 of Canadians will face a critical illness and/or be disabled for 90 days or more before age 65.

• Almost 3,400 Canadians are diagnosed with cancer each week.

• About 30% of new cancer cases will occur in young and middle-aged adults ages 29-59, in their most productive years of employment and raising families.

• Roughly 1 in 2.3 men and 1 in 2.6 women living in Canada will develop cancer during their lifetime.

• An estimated 70,000 heart attacks and 50,000 strokes occur in Canada each year. About 80% of stroke patients survive the initial event. The risk of stroke doubles every 10 years.

• Roughly 1 in 2 men and 1 in 3 women are predicted to develop heart disease in their lifetime.

• Statistics indicate that the risk of suffering and surviving a critical illness is very real and the chances of survival are far greater than death under the age of 65.

• A serious life-altering illness strikes one of three Canadians in their lifetime. The statistics are startling. “It won’t happen to me…”

Small business owners and women often bear the responsibility for caring physically, emotionally, and financially for everyone. As medical advances continue and life expectancies rise, most of us will face an interruption of earnings due to critical or long term illness. What if you or a member of your family were diagnosed with a critical or long term illness? How would you pay the bills? How would you take care of your business and your family, and most importantly, yourself? Recovery should be your first priority. Thanks to improvements in healthy living and medical science, there is a good chance that you can recover and get on with life. So, we should not let it rob us of our savings and our independence along the way.

Greater Chances of Illness

Did you know that Canadians’ have a greater chance of having at least one occurrence of — heart attack, stroke, or being diagnosed with cancer than dying before the age of 75.

Are you prepared for life’s unexpected and sometimes devastating challenges? A diagnosis of a serious illness could force a drain on your savings, and your retirement plans. Many people struggle to cope with the physical and emotional burdens brought on by a critical illness such as cancer, heart attack or stroke. Will you have the freedom to recover the way you want?

Did you know…

• The average length of a disability that lasts over 90 days is 2.9 years.

• 20% of those age 55 to 59 and 27% of those age 45 to 54 cited health problems as a major reason for retiring.

• You have a 1 in 3 chance of becoming disabled for 90 days at least once before age 65.

Most people think it would cost less to maintain their lifestyle if they were critically ill or disabled. This is a myth. Why disability insurance? Because your ability to earn an income is your best asset. Disability insurance is an insurance that protects your earnings should you become ill or injured. Disability strikes working people far more often than premature death.

Disabilities vs. Death Before 65

A 20-year-old man is about three times more likely to be disabled for at least 90 days than he is to die before the age of 65. And a 35-year-old woman is about seven times more likely to face disability than death before the age of 65.

There are three primary forms of protection that are considered “Living Benefits” Disability Insurance (DI), Critical Illness Insurance (CI) and Long Term Care insurance (LTC). When my washer broke down, it made sense to get a dryer at the same time. I saved money as part of a package deal. In most instances, the same is true when you purchase disability insurance and critical illness. At the same time, not only will it help protect you in case the unforeseen should occur. Some providers even offer a discount. A critical illness or disability could happen anytime.

What is critical illness insurance?

Critical illness coverage provides a lump sum benefit when a diagnosis is confirmed, to assist you and your family in handling the immediate financial impact of a critical illness. Long term disability protection assists you with ongoing monthly income support to help replenish your loss of income from not being able to perform your regular duties.

As Canadian’s, we think that we are covered if we get sick. And “we will get the treatment”. But you will need more resources than our healthcare system provides. Critical Illness Insurance pays a benefit if the policyholder is diagnosed with one of several critical illnesses as defined in the insurance policy.

Some of the illnesses usually covered by critical illness insurance:

• Cancer • Alzheimer’s
• Heart attack • Multiple sclerosis
• Stroke • Organ transplant
• Blindness • Kidney failure
• Deafness • Paralysis

Avoid a self insurance policy: Deciding whether or not critical illness insurance is right for you.

A critical illness or a disability can be financially devastating to you and your family. It is not difficult to imagine your personal savings depleting, debt piling up and spending your retirement savings on the care that you need to get well. Critical illness and disability insurance can and will help protect you from dipping into your savings if you or a family member is afflicted by a disability or critical illness. Disability insurance pays a maximum of approximately 75% of your earned income. Critical illness insurance generally pays a tax free, lump sum benefit of between $25,000 and $2-million if you are diagnosed with a range of illnesses including: life threatening cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, heart attack, stroke, blindness, deafness, multiple-sclerosis and kidney failure. Canada’s population is aging. Roughly 15% of the population is over the age of 65. According to Statistics Canada, that number will increase to 21% by the year 2026. Those aged 85 years and older represent the fastest growing segment of the senior population. Statistics Canada has projected that there will be almost 1.6 million Canadians aged 85 and over in 2041. These dramatic increases in the average life expectancies mean you have a better chance of surviving a critical illness. Will you be able to afford it?

Becoming critically ill is very real. Securing critical illness insurance now while you are healthy is one way of covering some of the unexpected expenses that could arise as a result of a critical illness. Don’t spend the entirety of your ‘nest egg’ saving your own life. I hope that this column has you thinking. If you or someone you care about doesn’t have living benefits insurance in place, act now. And if you already do, sit down with a qualified insurance broker and review what you have to make sure it still adequately covers your needs. In today’s climate, no one can afford to be without this basic protection. I’m sure we will all have to pay some medical bills sooner than later. Reducing our risks while we can is the easy way. Wouldn’t you rather be concentrating on getting better than thinking about where you are going to get the money to pay the bills. Someone once asked me the following: Do you know the difference between an old man and an elderly man? An elderly man has money and an old man has none.

As an independent insurance broker, working primarily in the corporate and professional marketplace, we are very familiar with how to package the best products and know about all available coverage’s. I’d be pleased to discuss your insurance, financial and tax planning with you. Everyone has different needs — allow me tailor your coverage to yours.

Posted by Robyn Latchman