‘Just in case’ advice helps in shock death

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A folder with a picture of Johnathan and ‘Just in case’ written on it is where Colleen now keeps her insurance papers.

Her husband was a 55-year-old qualified accountant. They’d immigrated to New Zealand with their children 20 years ago to begin a new life.

Johnathan worked for a large accounting company with a head office based in Australia. But as the result of a downturn in business in New Zealand, the company closed the operation in this country.

They offered to retrench Johnathan to an equivalent role in Melbourne. Meanwhile Colleen was working part time for the local body doing administrative work. Their child Trevor was autistic, with a high level of dependence on Colleen.

The couple decided that Colleen should remain in New Zealand to provide Trevor with the stability and comfort of his normal routine and environment. Johnathan would relocate to Melbourne for a period of time to investigate options for the family there, or to give him time to find another position back in New Zealand.

Twice a day Johnathan would Zoom call his family in New Zealand. The evening call was timed to happen just after the 6pm news, and Trevor would get so excited to see that “Dad was on the news”, as the Zoom connection ran through the TV. Life settled into this regular routine. But after just 10 weeks, Johnathan suffered a heart attack and passed away.

This was a major shock to Colleen and the rest of the family. And of course Covid lockdown restrictions added a huge level of complexity to the repatriation of Johnathan to New Zealand.

Their insurance adviser assisted Colleen with preparing and lodging the insurance claim. A funeral benefit was released by the insurance company promptly, meaning Johnathan could be returned to New Zealand for the family to provide him with the farewell they wanted.

The claim was fully settled just a few days later. Johnathan’s death certificate was released by the Australian coroner meaning all the insurance company’s requirements were met.

Colleen and family received grief counselling, which was a benefit provided by the insurance company as part of their Life Insurance policy. The counsellor did an amazing job in assisting the family through this grief process.

As they had Private Medical Cover the insurance premiums were waived for six months, removing the financial burden of paying them.

Colleen used the Life Insurance claim payment to reduce the mortgage on the family home, which meant that she could cope on her single income. And her insurance adviser reviewed Colleen’s cover and adjusted them to meet her changed circumstances as the now sole income earner for the family. While not convinced in the early stages of putting it in place, Colleen was extremely grateful that Johnathan had insisted that they have cover. His wise words had been, “we have this as our just in case”.


If you want to protect your loved ones, talk to Jenny:

Foundation Advice Limited
Jenny Fromén - Managing Director
027 533 8077