Donna and Jade, small business owners

Meet Donna and Jade - caterers to the stars!

Donna and Jade run a busy catering business with 2 full-time staff and a half dozen casual contractors. Donna is the company advertising and paperwork wiz and Jade transforms food into art you can eat. They're both company directors and each own 50% of the company's shares.

When you’re looking after corporate functions by day and socialising by night, working together has its occasional frustrations. But when you both have different taste in music, fashion, decor and food - well opposites sometimes actually attract.

Multiple business owners multiply the available skills and the risks

Working together they realised the increased risk of something going wrong affecting the other director increases too. The business recently needed to upgrade its commercial kitchen and delivery vehicles so Jade used her own house as security for the new business loan to make it happen.

Good decisions good business

They decided that they needed to reduce the risk of their business impacting their personal lives so they decided to use a life insurance policy to protect each other from the business debts, should anything happen to either of them.  

This way, should something terrible happen and one of them pass away unexpectedly,

  • the surviving director would use the insurance payout to repay company's debts. and
  • provide the funds to purchase the company's shares from the surviving business partner if needed

The next step was to document the agreement.  Their financial adviser called it a 'buy and sell agreement' but they call it 'the sensible thing to do for business partners'.

But wait there’s more…

The next step looked straightforward enough.

Trouble was, Donna and Jade each had a health condition that they feared could prevent them from getting life insurance cover. They were also really concerned about confidentiality and wanted to keep their personal business out of the company business.

Same vision different responsibilities

Up until now, they've just hoped that nothing would ever go wrong, but it was clear that one business partner was now shouldering more of the financial risk than the other (and even used her home to secure a business loan).

The strain of the imbalance was affecting their friendship. If one of them were to pass away unexpectedly or become terminally ill, they worried the bank would call in the commercial loan, demand immediate repayment and sell them up in 90 days if they didn't have a protection plan in place.

If one of them were to pass away unexpectedly or become terminally ill, they worried the bank would call in the commercial loan, demand immediate repayment and sell them up in 90 days if they didn't have a protection plan in place.

Thank goodness for friends who look out for you

Thankfully a good friend told them about unusualrisks.com.au and their online completely anonymous pre-assessment service, for people with specific unusual health conditions who want to get their life insurance sorted.

After work and over a glass of wine, Donna and Jade each visited unusualrisks.com.au from their smartphones.

They were impressed that the site used bank-grade encryption and was really committed to confidentiality.  So they each decided to begin an email conversation and see if they'd qualify for life insurance cover. Donna got a green light straight away but Jade had to provide some additional medical information after she initially received the yellow light.

The process just works

After a few short emails, a couple of phone calls and a confidential medical pre-assessment, they both qualified for life insurance cover. Then they received some good advice, agreed with the recommendations and lodged an application for life insurance confident that the hard work had been completed ahead of time so there would be no nasty surprises to deal with.

Because their adviser now had their health position pre-assessed, the application process moved along fast and they each received an offer of life insurance 48 hours later.

Confidentiality feels good

Throughout the process, their individual personal business remained confidential and they never actually saw their adviser face to face.

Now they joke about feeling like Charlie's Angels because they only know their adviser's voice.  But they've decided they might catch up in 12 months face to face over coffee to review their position and finally put a face to the voice that helped them get their life insurance sorted.


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