Meet Jack and read some of his case studies
Jack, our Communication Dog
Medicare: Putting Together the Alphabetical Puzzle
People often find themselves in a predicament when trying to understand the puzzle we refer to as Medicare. A B C D what?
Choosing the best strategy for protection and fully understanding options when still employed, retired or part of a spousal plan. In addition, the confusion of Medigap verses Med Advantage and RX D.
Understand if you are still working, whether or not, you need to carry part B, is your current RX plan creditable, will you have penalties for part B or D if you don’t take it at age 65, will you be able to change plans later... These questions are a few of the critical and often misunderstood pieces of the Medicare puzzle. Don’t find yourself in one of the many potholes that are unknowingly and easily created with Medicare options.
After an educational session with one of our team members, you will find yourself empowered to make the best decision for your family. You will feel confident in your own ability to put together the Medicare puzzle. Reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org for help today!
Medical Plans: The Prescription Leak
One of the greatest concerns for any business is controlling their company medical spend, which often falls close to the second or third greatest expense on the P&L sheet. It is not uncommon for prescriptions to make up as much as 25% of the overall cost of a plan. So, why is it that so many employers are still focusing on generic steerage when after years of this activity, the members who can take generic have already migrated to generic? The focus needs to be on where to purchase, whether generic or not!
Group with 76 Employees
$668,000 in Medical & RX Spend
47% Reduction in RX over 1 Year = $66,000
Let’s take a company with 76 employees on a plan (not including dependents) spending $668,000 per year in total medical and prescription claims. $141,000 of that is prescription only - or 21% of the total claims. A simple awareness campaign on purchasing opportunities will reduce the cost of the prescriptions alone by $68,000! That is a 10% reduction in total claim spend and 47% reduction in RX claims! When was the last time you were able to reduce any other aspect of company expenses by over 10%?!
Don’t put your head in the sand and assume you have no control over one of your greatest expenses! Helping your bottom line in turn will help your employees – make it a win-win!! Awareness, information, and tools are all you need!
Life Insurance: Protect the Business - Protect the Family
Sitting at the dining room table, over a decade ago, listening to my clients grapple over the need for life insurance with a resounding concern for its level of importance – great pride is taken pride in having gently described the styles and benefits of each type of coverage. That pride comes from living through the experience of supplying a plan to a loving couple who were deciding how best to address concerns, protect their children, and protect the continuation of their small business. It is not uncommon to see people dip their toe into this conversation and turn away due to the discomfort that comes with the conversation around loss. Ultimately, the desire was to leave one another $250,000.
Several years later a very unfortunate turn of events happened, and a loving mother, wife and business owner became stricken with terminal cancer. The prognosis was grim and there was little that could be done. The one thing our team was able to do was provide a check for financial security to a family with children headed to college, a husband left with mortgage debt and business loans. Money will never replace a mother, wife or friend, but it will create financial stability in a time when other areas of life become less stable.
Never assume it won’t happen to you! Please don’t let someone “sell” you life insurance, better yet become an informed consumer and purchase what fits your budget and your family needs.
Long Term Care: My Greatest Fear
“Please dear whatever you do – don’t put me in a nursing home.”
A mother’s exact words followed by, “I met a lovely gentleman who came to my house today and he sold me a policy that will pay for my needs at home or if I have to go to a nursing home.” This story comes to you from one of our associates and we thought it was worth sharing. This is a pure share coming from an associate who is the daughter in this story and has no interest in selling Long Term Care. What she is interested in providing is an awareness around planning, the unexpected and cost.
Not more than two years after her mother purchased a policy, she found herself living her greatest fear. Unfortunately, she arrived at the emergency room and ultimately ended up having brain damage causing her to be put on life support. She sought medical attention the week before her emergency, however her concerns went undiagnosed, otherwise she might be with us today. Against her daughter’s suggestion, she had purchased that Long-Term Care policy from that lovely gentlemen years earlier. Her daughter was astounded to find out that the policy more than covered the daily costs of her needs and ironically her mother passed just months before the policy ran its term.
This ended with a grateful child who took the time and energy to write a thoughtful letter to an insurance carrier that fulfilled its commitment to the policy holder and spared the family the financial anguish that so many face during end of life situations.
Monthly Costs - National Median - 2019 Genworth Survey
Skilled Nursing Facility
Assisted Living Facility
(private one bedroom)
Home Health Agency
Want to learn more?
Disability: The Lost Paycheck
“Deb”, an employee, sat apprehensively at the meeting table for her turn to speak about her new employee benefits during her lunch break. The suspicion that this was going to be another “corporate formality” changed quickly when she became engaging, curious, thankful, and ultimately enrolled in some of the enhanced benefits including disability. This was made possible from her employer who allowed for such an offering to employees including one-on-one customization.
A few months later she was admitted into the ER with abdominal pain. Turns out she had an infection and was kept for a few days for observation. I was informed by her employer and went to visit her in the hospital to check on her and help her complete her claim paperwork. Her husband sat at her bedside with an expression of, “Please help!”. After getting her through the paperwork, her husband stood to shake my hand and through his proud, shaky voice, said, “Thank you. Without this coverage, we’d be lost.”
1 in 4 adult Americans live with some sort of Disability (CDC.gov)
Percentage of adults with functional disability types (CDC.gov)
13.7% - Mobility
10.8% - Cognition
6.8% - Independent living
5.9% - Hearing
4.6% - Vision
3.7% - Self Care
5.6% percent of working Americans will experience a short-term disability (six months or less) due to illness, injury, or pregnancy on average every year (Integrated Benefits Institute). Almost all of these are non-occupational in origin (Group MarketShare, a disability-benefits market research firm)
More than one in four of today’s 20 year olds can expect to be out of work for at least a year because of a disabling condition before they reach the normal retirement age (Social Security Administration)
Don’t become a statistic. Plan for the unpreventable, the unthinkable. Protect what and who you work so hard for. Disability has the potential of doing more harm to your family financially than most other catastrophic events.
Group Education: Prepared for the Unexpected
In April of 2014 “John” came to a group education session to learn more about the enhanced employee benefit programs available to him through his employer. He had one thing in mind – protect his wife if anything were to happen to him. After the general session, he asked if he could schedule an individual meeting to talk more about his specific circumstances. We structured Life Insurance to protect his wife and preserve his assets like he wanted although he was very certain he wouldn’t need to use it.
In December of 2014, “John” was diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer, and on May 5th, 2015, he passed. During his last week, I was invited to see him and share in his last family meal with him. We all waited in line to have a turn to see him privately. When it was my turn, his eyes lit up and we talked for what seemed like hours. The very first thing he said to me was not to feel bad for him at all. His family is taken care of because of me. And that gave him peace. He gave me a hug goodbye, and his wife walked me out. She said, “You know, he’s right. You walked us through a process we couldn’t do on our own. Thank you for everything.”
There are no concrete statistics as to what the probability is of passing at any given age. You cannot predict, but you can plan. Let us help ease the process of the unexpected and untimely.