Income Protection provides you with a regular income, which is paid to you if you are out of work due to illness or injury.
It is designed to replace some of your earned income if you can no longer earn an income yourself. The payment would commence once you have been off work for a certain length of time, know as the “deferred period”. The payment would continue until you have recovered and are fit to return to work or until your chosen retirement age.
PROTECTING YOUR INCOME PROTECTS A LOT MORE THAN YOUR INCOME!
Statistics show that a 30 year old person is more likely to be off work due to an illness or injury for a long period, than to die before the age of 65. If you had to give up work due to illness or injury, how would you pay your regular bills? You may also have the additional burden of extra medical costs. Could you continue to pay these bills if you lost your regular income? If the answer is no, you need income protection.
You can set the amount that you wish to be insured, however the maximum benefit is 75% of your annual salary less the State Illness benefit (if applicable) which is currently approximately €10,000. (Note that State Illness Benefit is not paid to self-employed people). There are limits on the maximum income level that you can cover. These limits vary across the insurance companies, but typically it is up to 75% of the first €125,000 of your salary plus 33% of the balance less the State Illness Benefit. This is subject to an overall maximum of circa €175,000- €250,000.
CHANGES TO THE AMOUNT OF COVER
It is important to review your policy regularly to ensure that you are adequately insured and indeed not over insured. In the event of you needing to claim the insurance provider will pay out based on your actual earnings, not the level of cover you have insured for.
Some life assurers such as Friends First have an automatic benefit on their policies which allows you to increase the cover on your policy by a certain amount (up to 30% of the original cover every three years in the case of Friends First) without having to provide evidence of health. This can be a simple and effective way to increase your cover if necessary.
ADDITIONAL BENEFITS THAT YOU CAN INCLUDE IN YOUR POLICY ARE INDEXATION AND ESCALATION. INDEXATION
You can choose to include indexation on your plan. This means that your benefits will increase each year to keep them in line with inflation. Your premium will also increase. The rates of indexation for each of our providers is as follows;
You can also select escalation. This feature means that your income benefit will increase/escalate during a claim. Your premium does not change.
You can choose either, or both of these options, or you can choose to have your benefit and premium remain level throughout your plan.
WHERE DOES YOUR OCCUPATION COME INTO IT?
Your occupation is very important as not all occupations are covered; particularly occupations that have a degree of occupational risk, e.g. working with hazardous materials or working in confined spaces. If your occupation does not feature on our quote form, just contact us with details of your occupation and we can confirm if you will be able to apply for Income Protection.
Below is a table that will give you a good idea of what class your occupation falls into but it is not the definitive guide as there are some small differences between the various life companies.
Class 1 White- collar occupations: no appreciable accident or health risk. These occupations will usually be office based. Examples include accountants, GP, IT consultant, solicitor, administrators etc. Class 2 Mainly white – collar and predominantly administrative. Driving may be involved. Examples include quantity surveyor, dentist, sales rep etc. Class 3 Skilled occupations, which may involve light manual duties but heavy lifting is rare. Examples include interior painters, foremen, electrical engineers and domestic electricians, nurses etc. Class 4 Skilled tradespersons, working on construction sites using light power tools. Examples include carpenters and plumbers.