Personal insurance policy ownership and enduring powers of attorney
Last month, we highlighted the importance of having the right policy ownership structure for your personal insurances, the most common ones being sole or joint policy ownership. Policy ownership means that the policy owner(s) is able to make any changes that may be required or to lodge a claim.
One important consideration is that any administrative matters relating to the policy will be able to take place only with the agreement and signatures of the policy owner(s). While one is healthy, this will not present any problems. However, in a situation of a terminal illness, trauma or in the event of one being so mentally or physically incapacitated as to be unable to sign a claim form (such as being in a coma), the only option is to go through the courts to facilitate the claim – meaning that the money is not available at the time when it is most needed, as well as creating unnecessary issues and stress on the family.
Enduring Powers of Attorney
For this reason, it is important to have Enduring Powers of Attorney (EPA) in place, with respect to your (i) Property and (ii) Personal Care and Welfare. This will give you peace of mind that your assets and personal welfare will be properly managed on a temporary or permanent basis by someone you trust if you become unable to do so.
People tend to think only the elderly are likely to need someone to manage their affairs, but anyone can become mentally incapable at any age. An accident or illness may be the prompt for needing an EPA. And, as an EPA needs to be created when one is still mentally capable, it makes sense to do it as soon as possible.
How do I create an Enduring Power of Attorney?
You can set up an enduring power of attorney through a lawyer or trustee corporation. There are also options available to set these up online, but it does pay to seek professional advice so that you are sure that everything is correctly in place. By doing so, this will give you peace of mind through knowing that any decisions about your property or personal care are being made in your best interests or that your loved ones will be looked after should you pass away.
Insurance is a specialist field
Insurance requires extensive, detailed knowledge and experience of the multitude of insurers and products in the market. As good insurance advisers, it’s our job to work together with you to provide guidance and quality advice, and to come up with a plan that provides security and peace of mind for you, your family and your business.
It’s what we do!