Insurance

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What to consider when
looking into SMSF
Insurance

Setting up an SMSF comes with many benefits and some risks. As property is considered an illiquid investment, (hard to sell) holding life insurance can be a great way of managing this risk to your SMSF and managing the debt on the property, in the event something happens to one of the members of the fund.

The decision many new SMSF members face, is whether to maintain the insurance that they hold within a retail, industry or employer default fund or if applying for new insurance via their SMSF is a better option.

Compare SMSF Insurance
Providers

DIRECT – TV

  • No Medical Check
  • Expensive
  • Does Not Pay Out
  • Many Complaints

MYSMSF

  • Individual Advice
  • Claims Assistance
  • Benefit Structuring
  • Medically Assessed

ONLINE

  • Compares Price & Providers
  • Gets Expensive to Hold
  • No Service
  • Limited Advice

Comparision Table

RETAIL / INDUSTRY OR GROUP INSURANCE

  • Cheap
  • Easy to obtain – No medical checks required
  • Not as comprehensive as standalone insurance
  • Barriers to access benefits
  • Insurance premiums are not tax deductible

SMSF INSURANCE

  • Life & Tpd* insurance is 100% tax deductible
  • More comprehensive but requires medical
    assessment
  • Fewer barriers to access benefits
  • Approximately 10% -30% higher in cost

Types of SMSF Insurance cover

Life Insurance

Income cover is probably the most essential type of insurance cover because your income determines your standard of living, your ability to build wealth and your capacity to provide for retirement.The amount of cover is usually restricted to 75% of your gross salary. Premiums are tax deductible only when held personally. Income protection should not be held in super, but often industry fund members hold ‘salary continuance’ insurance which is a 2 year benefit period.The problem is in most instances is a claim cannot be accessed by the insured as a condition of release such reaching pension age ( 55-65) must be met for the release of money held in a super fund.

TPD cover

Income cover is probably the most essential type of insurance cover because your income determines your standard of living, your ability to build wealth and your capacity to provide for retirement.The amount of cover is usually restricted to 75% of your gross salary. Premiums are tax deductible only when held personally. Income protection should not be held in super, but often industry fund members hold ‘salary continuance’ insurance which is a 2 year benefit period.The problem is in most instances is a claim cannot be accessed by the insured as a condition of release such reaching pension age ( 55-65) must be met for the release of money held in a super fund.

Income Protection Insurance

Income cover is probably the most essential type of insurance cover because your income determines your standard of living, your ability to build wealth and your capacity to provide for retirement.The amount of cover is usually restricted to 75% of your gross salary. Premiums are tax deductible only when held personally. Income protection should not be held in super, but often industry fund members hold ‘salary continuance’ insurance which is a 2 year benefit period.The problem is in most instances is a claim cannot be accessed by the insured as a condition of release such reaching pension age ( 55-65) must be met for the release of money held in a super fund.

Trauma Cover

Income cover is probably the most essential type of insurance cover because your income determines your standard of living, your ability to build wealth and your capacity to provide for retirement.The amount of cover is usually restricted to 75% of your gross salary. Premiums are tax deductible only when held personally. Income protection should not be held in super, but often industry fund members hold ‘salary continuance’ insurance which is a 2 year benefit period.The problem is in most instances is a claim cannot be accessed by the insured as a condition of release such reaching pension age ( 55-65) must be met for the release of money held in a super fund.

The problem with
super SMSF Insurance Cover

The first hurdle is getting paid on your super insurance policy when held in a retail/industry fund. This may be subject to a medical assessment at the time of claim and in most instances, a claim once paid, cannot be accessed by the insured, as a condition of release such as reaching pension age of 60, must be met for the release of insurance proceeds for TPD and Salary continuance policies, which are held in a super fund. Where TPD cover is concerned, there may be tax consequences if the claim is before age 50 and or even under age 60.

Some things to consider with insurance policy structuring:

  • Benefit periods can vary from 2 years to age 65 for life or accident cover.
  • Waiting periods (the time before a claim is paid) can range from 14, 30 or 90 days to even longer.
  • Calculating cover amounts can get complicated based on cost and benefit.
  • Claims benefits can be escalated in line with inflation.
  • Your occupation determines your premium and some companies exclude some occupations altogether.
  • Policy definitions can vary greatly between companies especially the definitions of “total disability” and the differences between “own occupation” and “any occupation” and “Indemnity” vs “Agreed Value”.
  • Premiums can be “Stepped” “Level” or “Optimum”

TIP: Most of these policies can be funded from a SMSF, but buyer be aware, that funding policies held outside or inside of super using super contributions can dilute your super savings, which can be detrimental to wealth creation and property acquisition strategies.

The Solutions

Option One

Sally is setting up an SMSF and has $150,000 life and TPD in two super funds. She has decided to rollover all her super and obtain insurance through her SMSF. If something happens to her she is aware that she will have NO insurance during this period. However, she applies for her new insurance via her SMSF, while she is setting up her SMSF, before her super rolls over from her retail fund. This will leave no gap in coverage and when her new insurance is approved she can complete the rollover of her super thereby ceasing the cover automatically.

Option Two

John has $400,000 of life and TPD insurance in his retail super fund. John decides to maintain all the insurance held within his employer nominated super fund, by leaving $2,000 to maintain these policies till he obtains new cover in his SMSF.

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