Recently, three business partners came to see me for a review of their employee benefits program. Sounds simple, right? Well it was… until I uncovered some huge gaps in their individual, group and corporate insurance.
It turned out that they owned the building they worked out of. So, I asked them some basic questions: how is the building funded? What plans are in place if one of the partners dissolves the partnership? What about if a partner becomes disabled… how are salaries, benefits and debts handled? Who pays?
They looked at each other, then at me. One of them shrugged. “We have no idea,” he said. “No-one has ever asked us that before. We hadn’t even thought of it.”
Then I asked about their existing employee coverage. I asked how long ill or disabled employees would be covered by the business before turning the responsibility over to the insurance company. Not only did they have no idea… they discovered that they didn’t even have disability insurance!
Whether you are a business owner, an employee, a retiree… it’s essential that you know the details of your insurance plan – especially, where the gaps are. Not knowing means that you, your business, and your family could be at risk. For these three partners, their individual financial obligations were intertwined with their business, which meant that if the business folded, or a partner left, they’d be on the hook personally. And if an employee had to take long-term leave for illness, they (not their insurance company) would be paying out of pocket indefinitely.
By asking some basic questions based on their business and individual situations (questions that, apparently, not every advisor or firm asks, even though they should), I was able to set up corporate and group plans that protected the company and the employees. Then, after determining each partner’s individual needs and goals, I filled in the gaps with personal plans that ensured they and their families were protected – no matter what happened to the business.
If your personal, group and business plans aren’t integrated, it’s very likely that there are gaps in your coverage that leave you at risk. That’s why I specialize in integrating all three – so I can spot the gaps, and fill them before they become a problem. So… where are YOUR gaps?
PS: Thanks to all of you who have sent referrals our way. We appreciate your confidence in us.