Many people occupy a tricky middle-ground between not wanting to dwell on – or even think about – those worst-case scenarios, and not being able to get them out of their heads for any good length of time. In other words, they spend a lot of their time thinking about the things they absolutely, categorically don’t want to think about.
Anxiety toward the future’s unknowns is entirely understandable and incredibly common, but there is a solution to that tricky middle-ground, and it can be found in creating a solid, comprehensive plan. This plan may never be used, but it will always be needed – if for no other reason than to reassure you, and let you look forward to the future rather than fearing it.
But these anxieties don’t always have a clear, defined form, so how do we know what we need to be protecting ourselves against – let alone how?
What are ‘Protected’ Finances?
These days, our bank accounts and investments are relatively secure against everyday threats, but the long-term health of our finances is a very different story.
Why? Because financial protection is a matter that goes far beyond the scope of your bank accounts or investment portfolio. Our finances don’t exist in a vacuum, and that’s why protection is a matter than crosses into other aspects of your life – from ensuring that your income is insured against unforeseen circumstances, to taking the time to prepare against the risk of severe illness.
In essence, protected finances are those that are part of a much wider network of preparation, forethought, and long-term thinking – matters that go far beyond the immediate security of your bank account. To a certain extent, financial protection ties-in with other essential factors like estate planning, but there are plenty of considerations to work through besides those that are relevant to the very distant future.
There is no single definition for protected finances, since that type, scope, and level of protection required by any one of our clients will differ significantly from the next. There are, however, plenty of key features we look for in a client’s financial status.
Take a look at our complete guide to financial protection to find out more.
How We Can Help
The team at Fingerprint Financial Planning specialise in creating comprehensive plans for each and every client we speak with. We understand how identify specific areas of weakness in your finances – areas of weakness that, to you, may feel like broad, undefined anxieties – and how to create workable, realistic plans for you.
Our advice is truly independent, which means that the plans we help you to create are grounded in knowledge, experience, and a genuine passion for what we do, rather than incentives or restrictions.
Life insurance is, in many ways, the ultimate reassurance. As you grow your family, the question, ‘what if?’ starts to gain more and more weight, and the very worst-case scenarios can hang off your shoulders like boulders. Life insurance offers a financial umbrella to your loved ones – one that offers such a significantly level of protection against the very worst that, for most people, it is well worth the premium.
There are many, many different life insurance policies out there, and finding the right product for you – one that fits your finances, and which promises to keep your family in the life they are used to should you die unexpectedly – isn’t always simple. Working with us to safeguard your family’s future is one of the best things you can do for them.
Start by getting to grips with the basics of life insurance here.
Critical Illness Cover
Absolutely no one can guarantee that they won’t one day have to wrestle with a serious diagnosis. While devastating in and of itself, the true impact of a critical illness goes far beyond its initial ramifications and, unfortunately, poses many more questions and concerns to other areas of life besides your health and wellbeing.
If the day ever comes, you want to be sure that financial stress does not represent yet another pot added to the stove. Working out a critical illness policy that will provide you with a lump sum upon diagnosis is one of the best ways to mitigate some of the most significant difficulties you could face, and it’s a process we can guide you through without any bias or sales incentives.
Is critical illness cover worth it?
While many of us will have savings to fall back on if the worst should happen, the peace of mind that comes from knowing that a critical illness will not compel you to drain your savings is, for many people, worth the premiums. As always, the main downsides are the fact that the policy has no cash value, but, often, that is a relatively small price to pay for the knowledge that a serious diagnosis won’t derail the finances.
Whenever we sit down to review our finances or plan for the future, we all depend on the idea that our income is a consistent, unshakeable fact. Many of our long-term financial goals depend on that fact for obvious reasons, and it’s not realistic (and very pleasant) to go through life constantly prepared for that line of income to stop.
Nevertheless, any strong financial plan will have been weatherproofed against the risk of lost earnings so that you don’t need to sit and worry about the ‘what ifs’.
Income protection policies are there to ensure that, should you fall ill or incapable of continuing on with your job as usual, you have something to fall back on. As with any policy, you’ll want to be fully cognisant of the benefits and advantages before you sign up – and that’s our bread and butter.
How long does income protection last?
Generally, income protection will last for as long as you need it to. In other words, until you are able to get back into full-time employment, you will be able to receive a steady stream of income from your policy.
Is it worth it?
For many people, yes. It’s a question of risk, and whether or not you can live with the risk of the sudden loss of your income. We can help you to evaluate how significant income protection is for you and your lifestyle.
Private Medical Insurance
Seeking private medical treatment almost always translates to a faster route to treatment, which offers a long list of obvious benefits to patients. It also means you could gain access to treatments and surgeries not currently offered by the National Health Service, which means that, from a long-term perspective, you have a far more robust level of protection against the impacts of a serious health complaint.
For this reason, having private medical insurance represents a strong line of reassurance for the future. For many people, it represents an essential component of a strong and comprehensive long-term financial plan, and indispensable protection against the toll that long wait-times for treatments and surgeries can have on your livelihood.
Protection for Your Business
Many forms of protection for businesses – protection that any professional would consider essential – are not there by default. Ensuring that your business operates under the most robust shelter possible means knowing the landscape inside out – something the average business owner simply doesn’t have the time to do.
The team at Fingerprint Financial Planning have a wealth of experience with business protection – just as they do with protecting your personal finances.
Key Person Insurance
A workforce is the lifeblood of any business operating today, but there will inevitably be certain members that you simply cannot afford to lose. Key Person Insurance is a type of policy taken out to protect the business’s financial interests should the individual in question pass away or lose the capacity to work long-term.
This can mean the difference between major disruption and financial difficulties for a business, or the ability for it to weather the storm – particularly if the policy works in tandem with a strong succession plan.
Relevant Life Insurance
This is a type of life insurance policy that can be tailored to your employee. It offers a strong line of reassurance for the employee in question, and their family, while also offering the potential for tax efficiency for the business itself. It’s an alternative option if your business is too small to qualify for a group policy, or you’d rather offer life insurance to a limited number of employees.
Share & Partnership Cover
A healthy business is the one that is prepared for the future – or, more accurately, its many potentials. Share and Partnership cover means that, should a partner or shareholder die or become unable to fill their original role, the company will be financially capable of buying back their stake in the business, or pay off outstanding loans. For families, this means a financial safeguard should the worst happen.
Fingerprint Financial Planning is an independent enterprise, which means everything we recommend to you will stem from our expertise and experience, rather than an incentive or bias. Get in touch to find out how we can work with you to improve your financial health, and protect what matters most.