For its latest ‘Deadline to Breadline’ report, Legal and General surveyed 2,000 full and part-time workers to assess how long they could survive on savings if their income stopped due to serious, or long-term illness, or death. The rather worrying answer was 32 days.
The research also revealed that just over a quarter wouldn’t have enough savings to last them a week and 30% of UK workers have no financial back-up plans whatsoever – despite the average household debt standing at around £4,600. This lack of preparedness would result in potentially serious financial exposure if things went awry.
UK Protection gap
L&G’s research is important because it highlights just how many people could be gambling with their homes and their family’s wellbeing, by not having a back-up plan. And when you consider that the average UK gross annual salary is £28,677, the support you could expect from the State is not sufficient to provide a reasonable safety net, especially if you are the sole breadwinner.
Statutory Sick Pay can be paid for up to 28 weeks @ £92.05 a week
Employment and Support Allowance @ up to £73.10 a week for the first 13 weeks then up to £110.75 after that (for a single person)
For less than the cost of a daily cup of takeaway coffee you can help protect yourself and your family and be in a better position to deal with the consequences that could occur from illness, accident, unemployment or death. That’s why, when we talk to clients about protection, we talk about value, rather than cost.
How can you protect yourself?
If you have a mortgage or people who rely on your income it’s important to take steps now to understand what would happen if your income suddenly stopped. If you have any existing insurance policies, check the details to make sure they reflect your current circumstances and would still meet your needs if you needed to make a claim.
If you don’t have cover in place we can talk to you about a range of different types of protection insurance that would help to pay the mortgage and provide a financial lifeline for your family if you were temporarily, or permanently, unable to provide for them. This includes cover for serious and critical illness and income protection, which pays out a regular tax-free income if you’re unable to work.
We can also advise on a range of life insurance plans, including:
Term insurance – normally taken out to cover mortgage payments, these plans are the simplest form of life insurance and can be tailored to suit your budget.
Family income benefit – pays out a regular income as an ongoing lifeline for dependants.
Whole of life insurance – lasts as long as you do (or until you stop paying the premiums) and provides a lump sum on death.
With some types of life cover it’s also important to consider writing the plan in trust. This is a legal document that allows you to determine what happens to the money after your death and can ringfence the pay out from inheritance tax.