Men’s Health Month: Help your clients make healthy financial decisions this June

By Steve Piper, Chief Distribution Officer at Bidvest Life

Steve Piper

Throughout June, National Men’s Health Month encourages South Africa’s boys and men to take charge of their overall health by making healthy living decisions. This includes making smarter choices around food and lifestyle habits like smoking and fitness, as well as committing to those regular check-ups for early detection against illness.

“In a time of change and uncertainty, clients might struggle to make healthy living decisions as well as healthy financial decisions. It’s important that as advisers, we help them stay on track at this time,” says Steve Piper, Chief Distribution Officer at Bidvest Life.

One way of doing this is to ensure that when illness, mental health issues or injury strike, they can take the time off to recover without having to worry about losing their incomes.

“Bidvest Life’s claims statistics show that seven of out every 10 South Africans will experience at least one injury or illness in their lifetime that will prevent them from earning an income. That’s why income protection should be the number one priority for every income-earning South African – and financial advisers have a key role to play in educating their clients around the benefits of income protection,” says Piper.

According to Bidvest Life’s 2020 Claims Report, the top cause of income protection claims by males in 2020 was Covid-19 infections and complications, with cancer and mental health claims following closely behind, largely due to anxiety, burnout and depression. Prostate cancer continues to be the most common cancer for men in South Africa.

“As advisers, we must educate our clients about the need to protect themselves against their most likely risks, which are injury, illness and critical illness. Before selecting a death and permanent disability policy with lump sum benefits, it’s important for clients to protect their monthly income stream so that they can claim when they need it most,” says Piper.

That means asking your clients questions like:

  • Do they have both temporary and long-term income protection in place?
  • Have you provided them with effective cover for critical illnesses that provides for both income and lump sum needs to focus on their recovery?
  • If so, have they selected the right waiting period to suit their needs and do they understand the impact of that decision at claim stage?
  • Do you have clients who were previously uninsurable due to their occupation? They may now qualify for cover.

Bidvest Life’s Temporary Income Protector and Event Based Income benefits form the foundation of a working consumer’s financial plan by protecting up to 100% of their after-tax monthly income. By adding Critical Illness Income, their Temporary Income Protector and Event Based Income benefits are boosted by an extra 30% and pay out for up to 12 months*, should they be diagnosed with a listed critical illness. With Bidvest Life’s Critical Illness Lump Sum (CILS) benefit, kids are automatically covered at no additional cost if the parent takes out CILS cover.

Life Income ensures beneficiaries will receive a monthly income for as long as they need, providing complete peace of mind, while Spouse Protector pays a monthly income if a client’s spouse is unable to work for more than 14 days due to an injury or illness.

“In a world where Covid-19 is still rife and mental health issues are more common than ever, it is up to you to ensure your clients know their real needs and risks and are covered correctly. By prioritising income protection, they are protected from life’s curveballs and have claim certainty, which fosters better long-term relationships with you as advisers,” says Piper.

*Less your waiting period. Limited to your Temporary Income Protector benefit term.

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