Why Critical Illness insurance is a benefit for the living

Advances in medical care may have given many Canadians who experience major critical illnesses a new lease on life.  However, for most of these individuals, survival means having to make costly lifestyle adjustments while still being responsible for regular financial commitments.  Many small business owners need to protect themselves and their companies against the potentially devastating costs of a serious illness.

Almost every one knows someone who has survived a heart attack, cancer, stroke, or has undergone life-threatening surgery ranging from coronary aortic bypass to a major organ transplant.  Suffering a critical illness is tragic enough without adding the worry or risk of losing your home or job, suffering a decline in lifestyle and quality of life, or not being able to pay for special treatment in Canada or the USA. 

Critical Illness Insurance is a unique combination of financial and medical protection. This type of coverage provides a  “tax-free” cash benefit to the insured 30 days after diagnosis of a critical illness as defined in their policy. Critical Illness Insurance can provide the living benefit that is so desperately needed by someone who is fighting for his or her life!

Consider the new costs that may be added to your already overwhelming financial burden: convalescence, private nursing, medical equipment, refitting your home or car, moving, reduction or loss of income, changing jobs or professions, including the income to allow the time to recover fully before returning to work. Would provincial health care cover all the medical bills, including the costs of care while you recover at home? Likely Not! Wheelchairs, home conversions, medical equipment and lost income can amount to several thousands of dollars.

A serious life altering illness strikes one of three Canadians.  Consider these Canadian statistics:

-One in four Canadians has some form of heart disease, over 70,000 heart attacks per year

-More than 3075 cases of cancer are diagnosed each week

-50,000 Canadians suffer a stroke each year

-75% survive the initial stroke

-Every day 3 people in Canada are diagnosed with MS

-Over 86,000 Canadians are diagnosed with Alzheimer’s every year

Critical Illness insurance can play a significant role in shielding RRSP’s from premature withdrawals, associated tax consequences and damage to retirement plans. The onset of cancer or serious heart attack can necessitate a costly RRSP withdrawal to cover emergency expenses and treatment.

The “ tax-free” payout of cash from a critical illness insurance plan at the time of claim has no strings attached to it.

Many individuals spend a large portion of their lives building a financial plan, saving annually for their retirement and diligently paying down their mortgage. Years of hard work and saving can be lost in the event of a critical illness.