Family Income – A fragile responsibility?
Employed, self-employed, zero-hours, flexi-working, the world of work is changing. Even without the current uncertainties, it’s becoming almost expected that we may experience some form of break in our earnings potential during a career. This may be for various reasons such as planned caring responsibilities, or career-changing, or unplanned such as a cancelled contract or period of unemployment.
Suppose it’s a planned career break, you’ll have had time to plan your finances and make adjustments, such as part-time working or reducing your household outgoings. If you’ve come to the end of a work contract, again, you’ve probably made plans and may have something else lined up in the not too distant future? Even redundancy, as distressing as that can be, generally comes with some short-term financial support for yourself and your family.
The ‘Plan B’ you hope you’ll never need
But what if you have an enforced break from earning for a different reason – say as a result of an accident or illness? If you qualify, Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) may offer basic support for a limited period. If you’re entitled to Employment Support Allowance (ESA), you’ll have to wait a minimum of 13 weeks to have your claim assessed for eligibility. In either case, the amounts you may claim are unlikely to cover your full family outgoings.
But, beyond state help, what else is there to help you support your family and even the roof over your head in the event of losing all or part of your income due to accident or sickness?
State benefits, or ‘something else’?
Thankfully, there is a growing awareness of the need for ‘something else’. Encouraging signs are emerging that people are becoming aware of the need to protect their family finances from such an eventuality. Several UK based insurers are reporting a steep rise over the past six months in enquiries about income protection insurance from working people who recognise that their financial wellbeing and earnings potential can evaporate in a frighteningly short space of time.
Youth is on your side.
What’s even more interesting though is the age-profile of these new enquirers. PG Mutual is not alone in reporting that the enquiries are coming from increasingly younger workers. We have seen a 44% increase over the same period last year in enquiries through our Quick Quote facility for income protection policies from people who are under 25 years old*.
Maybe this is a response to current economic uncertainties and a general tendency towards society becoming more risk-aware? Whatever the reasons, if you think that you may need to have some form of protection in place, you’ll want to do it as cost-effectively and efficiently as possible. In the case of income protection insurance, that means starting early.
In general terms, the younger you start any form of insurance that serves to support you and your family, the lower your premiums could be, and the longer you’ll have cover in place. Age, health and the ability to adapt to, or retrain for, other forms of work, are taken into account when calculating premiums. So too is the type of work you currently do and who you work for (some industries and job roles cannot be covered).
Information is power
It’s very easy to find out about what forms of financial support may be available to you should the worst happen. The Citizens Advice Bureau has excellent free and impartial advice about income protection insurance on its website https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/consumer/insurance/insurance/income-protection-insurance/
The government web portal also has information about Statutory Sick Pay and Employment Support Allowance and other benefits https://www.gov.uk/
You can also get a free Quick Quote for Income Protection Plus Insurance with PG Mutual. Simply enter a few basic details to get an idea of what your monthly premium cost could be. Our quotes do not commit you to anything and are an ideal starting point for finding out more about protecting yourself and your family. Visit www.pgmutual.co.uk.
*Stat derived from comparing internal data from 1st January 2019-15th June 2019 to 1st January 20202-15th June 2020.Go Back