PG Mutual is a not-for-profit membership organisation specialising in providing income protection insurance for professional people since 1928. Here, they share their insights into income protection and how it could benefit you.

When most people think about money, they think about how they want more of it.

But have you considered what you might do if you suddenly had a lot less money? Your savings would be exposed, you might need to take out a loan, or even lean on your family. Money isn’t everything of course, but it is often the key to a secure roof over your head, the ability to pay your bills and the freedom to enjoy your hobbies.

How would you cope if you lost your income unexpectedly because of illness?

What is income protection cover?

Income protection cover ensures you continue to receive a regular income if you’re unable to work because of illness or injury. Depending on how you tailor your policy, you’ll receive a level of insured benefit each month that could replace part or all of your monthly income. That added peace of mind means you’ll be able to concentrate on your recovery, safe in the knowledge that your overheads can be covered each month.

Why don’t more people have income protection cover?

The majority of us shun income protection. Studies suggest that over 80% of mortgage holders don’t have a policy in place. One possible reason people don’t have cover is because we don’t like to pay for products we don’t think we’ll use. The difficulty is, however, that you won’t be able to buy income protection once you really do need it!

Income protection covers your salary if illness or injury forces you off work, but when you have a clean bill of health and are feeling fit, you simply don’t think about being too unwell to work.

Helping you expect the unexpected

Unfortunately, life can take anyone by surprise at a moment’s notice. You could break your leg playing football, an innocuous stomach upset could become something more serious or you may be involved in a traffic collision.

Every month there are around half a million emergency admissions to A&E - that’s in England alone. And unfortunately, fate is indiscriminate. In short: income protection is the cover you don’t think you need, until you really need it.

What about sick pay?

If you’re employed, you are entitled to up to 28 weeks of Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) while illness or injury prevents you from working. Unfortunately, SSP currently amounts to just £92.05 per week. That most likely won’t even cover your rent or mortgage, let alone the rest of your overheads.

If you’re self-employed, you’re not eligible for SSP and instead will have to apply for Employment and Support Allowance. If your application is successful you will receive just £73.10 per week (based on current rates) which isn’t going to go very far.

Decimating your savings

It feels good to put money aside. Whether you’re saving up for a holiday, home improvements or a happy retirement, your savings are an investment in your future. It can be gut-wrenching to watch that pot of money disappear on bills.  

But that’s assuming you have savings. If you haven’t, an extended period off work could leave you searching for a loan and racking up debt or relying on your family to help you cope financially. Money worries like that can be incredibly stressful; the last thing you want when you’re trying to get back to full health.

Want to know more?

Sovereign Health Care has chosen to work with PG Mutual through its subsidiary company Sovereign Assured Partners Ltd, to offer a cost-effective income protection product called Income Protection Plus (IPP). IPP also has an added bonus – the plan includes an investment element which pays out at the maturity of the policy, whether you claim on the plan or not!

If you would like to find out more, visit sovereignhealthcare.co.uk/ipp.

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