by Meiz Majdoub
Some 25 years ago, a new type of insurance was born in Canada, called Critical Illness Insurance (C.I). Life is full of unexpected events. While some create wonderful lasting memories, others leave us with something we’ll never forget.
Just think about it for a minute; we insure most things in our daily life such as, car, jewellery, home, while we are on holidays and our Life, but do we ever think of, if we’re Critically diagnosed with a Critical Illness.
A Critical Illness can happen to anyone. The Canadian Cancer Society estimates that 206,200 Canadians will develop cancer in 2017 resulting in 80,800 deaths. About 2 in 5 Canadians will develop cancer in their lifetime. The Heart and Stroke Foundation’s report shows one in two Canadians has been touched by heart disease. The incidence of Critical Illnesses has become more common. Can you bear the costs associated with becoming Critically Ill? How would it affect you if you were to withdraw savings to bear the financial burden? Would it do you any good to be stressed with money worries while you or your loved ones are battling a life-altering illness? Do you know anyone stricken with a Critical Illness and how did it affect their finances? When Critical Illness strikes, recovery should be the number one priority, not finances.
Critical Illness insurance can help families survive the financial burden caused by having a major illness such as cancer, a heart attack or a stroke. Here are the top 5 reasons why critical illness insurance is a good idea.
- Expensive medical services
Dealing with a life-threatening Critical Illness can be physically, emotionally and financially challenging. A Critical Illness insurance policy ensures you can handle the monetary burden that comes with a Critical Illness. We may not be able to stop the Critical Illness, but we sure can help with its financial challenges.
- Drain on Savings
The expenses on a Critical Illness can be a huge drain on your accumulated savings and the money you have set aside for your children and other loved ones. Your savings or pension may not even be sufficient to cover the medical expenses. Critical Illness insurance helps to keep your life savings intact without affecting your medical treatment. It also gives your family a safety net in case you get sick.
- Add to your health insurance
Your health insurance may not be enough for certain illnesses or treatments. Getting the right critical illness coverage can add to the health insurance you already have.
Critical Illness policy premiums can be quite flexible. Your policy can be designed to cover you to age 65, 75, or to age 100. You may choose the amount of coverage you want, and you can even add a “return of premium” rider. This rider allows you to get back as much as 100% of premiums if you do not claim by a predetermined anniversary date, making this an affordable option for everyone.
- Peace of mind
We know that most people underestimate the need for Critical Illness insurance thinking their health insurance would cover it. That is not the case. Imagine a person who needs to undergo chemotherapy immediately but the wait is about a month long. The same treatment is also available instantly if you pay, say $40,000. Critical Illness insurance takes care of that. Not only that, Critical Illness insurance can be used to pay piling bills while you fight and recover from a life-altering disease.
Critical Illness generally covers the following:
Aortic Surgery Loss of Independent Existence
Aplastic Anemia Loss of Limbs
Bacterial Meningitis Loss of Speech
Benign Brain Tumour Major Organ Failure on Waiting List
Blindness Major Organ Transplant
Cancer (Life Threatening) Motor Neuron Disease
Coma Multiple Sclerosis
Coronary Artery Bypass Surgery Occupational HIV Infection
Dementia, including Alzheimer’s Disease Parkinson’s Disease
Heart Attack Specified Atypical Parkinsonian Disorders
Heart Valve Replacement or Repair Severe Burns
Kidney Failure Stroke
Upon diagnosis, one needs to survive the claim for 30 days before the claim is paid. In the event that the claimant doesn’t survive the 30 days, all premiums paid are refunded. Then there’s the option of return of premium, as stated under “Flexibility”.
Critical Illness is one of those choices that we need to address in our financial planning. It’s important to review this option even more important than what you leave to your loved ones. Critical Illness causes a lasting stress within a family and it should be seriously attended to. Critical Illness insurance is also available to children from age 0-17 and you can have an option to pay into it for 20 years, then it’s paid-up. Think about it, we are all vulnerable. Go and visit CHEO, and you will know what I’m making reference to.
About the writer
Meiz Majdoub, B.Comm, is a financial professional with over 30 years of experience and is accredited with a CLU, CH.F.C. He is also a member of the Conference for Advance Underwriters (CALU). and the Estate Planning Council Of Ottawa. He has helped individuals, organizations and corporations attain their goals in the areas of Financial & Estate Planning, Insurance, Living Benefits and Employee/ Group Benefits. He can be reached at: 613-749-4007, or firstname.lastname@example.org