Business Protection is designed to protect an interest in a business, if a key individual or shareholder within the company dies. You can add Critical Illness Cover to your policy to also secure a payout if a key individual suffers a serious illness such as cancer, heart attack or a stroke.
It’s split into three main branches:
Did you know that, according to Legal & General, 53% of the UK’s small businesses think they would cease trading in less than a year if a key employee died or became critically ill and unable to work? Business Protection is there to protect your company’s future.
The success of almost all small- and medium-sized businesses is dependant upon a few key people and the loss of such a person can often mean the beginning of the end for the business.
These key people can include the business owners, sales directors or indeed any other individual with specialist skills or knowledge essential to the ongoing success of the company.
When many business owners think about protecting their company the first thing that comes to mind is the premises, vehicles and stock.
Nearly everyone has insurance for these, but many forget about their most valuable assets – the people who make the business what it is.
Whatever the individual’s role, their loss can reach beyond just the cost of recruiting and training a replacement including:
According to the abovementioned report from Legal & General…
Based on ONS life expectancy data (2012-14), the chances of a healthy male passing away within the next 10 years are as follows:
1 in 62
1 in 29
1 in 12
Around 80% of all Critical Illness Insurance claims are made up of the ‘big three’ illnesses – cancer, heart attacks and strokes.
Not every incidence of these illnesses will be covered by Critical Illness Cover. Less severe incidences may not be included in the wording of your policy or may only trigger a partial payout, so it’s important to check definitions carefully.
Key Man Insurance – also known as Key Person Insurance – is designed to protect the business against the loss of a key person.
This could be anyone from a business owner to key management figures or even simply someone with a great deal of specialist knowledge who makes the business what it is.
It’s designed to provide business continuity in the event of they key individual dying or becoming critically ill (if you’ve added Critical Illness Cover to your policy).
A payout can be used not only to hire and train a replacement key individual, but also to tackle a variety of difficulties the company could face in the wake of the loss of that individual, from a drop in profits to a lack of confidence from clients / key suppliers.
The policy is for the benefit of the business and is therefore usually owned and paid for by the business and underwritten based on the lives of the key people.
When a shareholder of a business dies, the shares they own usually become part of their estate and are then transferred to the beneficiaries of their estate, typically their family.
This can cause problems when it comes to business succession planning, as the shares could have passed to someone without the aptitude for running a business or even, perhaps, the will to step up and do so.
To retain control of the business, funds must be raised to re-purchase the absent shareholder’s shares.
However, if funds cannot be raised from the remaining shareholders to re-purchase the absent shareholder’s shares, it may lead to the family receiving shares which they look to monetise, perhaps by selling to a competitor.
Shareholder Protection provides those funds by paying out into the company should a shareholder die or become critically ill.
This can also benefit the family / the critically ill shareholder, as it provides them with a ready buyer for the shares.
If you have an outstanding corporate debt – e.g. a commercial mortgage, funding from a venture capitalist / a lender, a business overdraft, a Directors Loan etc. – it’s worth protecting that debt in case a key person responsible for repaying it dies or becomes critically ill.
An uninsured business loan runs the risk of your company being declared insolvent after your death if it no longer has viable means to repay the loan. That’s why lenders and investors such as venture capital firms often expect this cover to be in place.
In the event of the death (or critical illness, if you’ve added Critical Illness Cover) or a person responsible for repaying the loan, the policy pays out into the business so the loan can be repaid.
The cost of Business Protection depends largely on the amount of cover you need. As with all Life Insurance written on individual lives, each person will need to be medically underwritten for Business Protection, which will involve a series of questions such as:
The below table details the monthly cost of Life Insurance Business Protection and Life Insurance and Critical Illness Cover for a healthy non-smoking individual aged 35, 45 and 55.
They’re looking for £150,000 of level cover (i.e. cover that will remain fixed throughout the policy term).
5 Year Policy
10 Year Policy
15 Year Policy
Life & Critical Illness Cover
Business Protection can vary in cost depending on the provider and the profile of the individual(s) you’re looking to get covered, so it pays to shop around. Below are some of the top insurers in the UK Business Protection marketplace.
Business Protection is more complicated than personal protection for a number of reasons, not least because of the variety of ways it’s paid for and taxed depending on the product that’s right for you.
We started Drewberry because we were tired of being treated like a number and not getting the service we all deserve when it comes to things as important as protecting our health and our finances. Below are just a few reasons why it makes sense to talk to us.
We deal with companies ranging from small startups to multinational corporations with millions in turnover so we are well equipped to help.
Please don’t hesitate to pop us a call on 02074425880 or email email@example.com.
Director at Drewberry
Sam was very helpful and kept me informed at all times. Brilliant service.