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What is Key Person Insurance?

Most business owners understand that assets vital to the success of the enterprise should be insured.  Premises are routinely covered for fire and/or theft; vehicles used to make deliveries, insured; machinery needed for manufacturing, also insured. Given that these tangible assets are instrumental in the success of the business, it makes good business sense that the business is protected in the event of a loss.   But what about key employees? Many business owners overlook the impact on their business should a key employee die unexpectedly.

If you own or manage a company whose continued success is dependent on key people (it might even be you), it would be prudent to insure all key personnel whose death or incapacity would negatively affect profitability.  Key persons are those who contribute to the continuing success and profitability of the enterprise.

What happens when an owner or key person dies or becomes disabled? Read more

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The Clock is Ticking!

Don’t Put Off Your Decision to Buy Life Insurance

2016 is an opportune year to buy life insurance.  New laws affecting the taxation of life insurance come into effect on January 1, 2017. After this date new policies will not perform as well as they do currently.

The good news is that the proceeds of life insurance policies paid at death still remain tax free.  What has been affected is the amount of cash value that may accrue in a policy and the tax-free distribution of death proceeds from a life insurance policy owned in a corporation.

How will this impact your existing and future policies?

Adjustment to the Maximum Tax Actuarial Reserve

Whole Life and Universal Life policies are valuable vehicles in which to accumulate cash value. The limit of how much can be invested is governed by the Maximum Tax Actuarial Reserve (MTAR).  If the cash value ever exceeds the MTAR limit, the policy is deemed to be “offside” and will be subject to accrual taxation. Read more

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Preventing Fraud All Year Round: How to safeguard your identity and financial information from theft

By, Carla Hindman, Visa Canada

A generation ago, most families didn’t think about financial fraud. Today, it can come in many forms – over the phone, through the mail and increasingly, online. It’s an equal opportunity crime that affects consumers of all ages.

This March marked the 12th anniversary of Fraud Prevention Month (FPM) in Canada. FPM raises awareness about fraud, while helping Canadians learn how to recognize, reject and report it. To combat fraud, the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada launched the ‘No Surprises‘ campaign to help Canadians understand their financial rights and responsibilities. Read more

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Family Business Planning Strategies

67% are at Risk of Succession Failure

If you are an owner in a family enterprise, the chances of your business transitioning successfully to the next generations is not very good.  This has not changed over the years. Statistics show a failure rate of:

  • 67% of businesses fail to succeed into the second generation
  • 90% fail by the third generation

With 80% to 90% of all enterprises in North America being family owned, it is important to address the reasons why transition is difficult. Read more

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Taxation of Life Insurance – New Rules Offer a Window of Opportunity

Permanent life insurance, such as Whole Life or Universal Life, has long been accepted as a tax efficient way of accumulating cash for future needs.  Soon the amount of funds that can be tax sheltered within a life insurance policy will be reduced by new tax rules which take effect January 1, 2017.  These changes may make 2016 the best year to buy cash value life insurance.

The changes to the tax rules regarding life insurance have resulted in an update to the “exempt test” which measures how much cash value can accumulate in a policy before it becomes subject to income tax.

Highlights of the new rules and their effect

For Cash Value Life Insurance: Read more

ARTICLES OF INTEREST

17
Jul
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Protect your valuables

By Neal Muschett

When it comes to protecting your home and ensuring you’ve got the right insurance coverage, there are a number of areas that are easily overlooked in high-value homes.

Unique Upgrades

Many high-end homes include unique upgrades—there is a big difference between marble tiles that you can find at the big-box retailers and custom-made marble tiles that are chosen for their colour and thickness from a quarry in Italy and flown overseas. The same goes for hardwood floors—if you have a rare or exotic hardwood that has to be imported, you will want to make sure that your insurance broker knows and includes that in your insurance policy. If you have a unique or expensive chandelier, you’ll want to let your broker know that as well, so that it is specifically included in your insurance policy.

Read more

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13
Jun
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What to do if you’ve (just) been fired

by Kira Vermond, Moneysense

Dismissed, downsized, dumped? There’s no easy way to hear you’re suddenly out of work. To soften the blow, we’ve pulled together six steps you can take right away to put more money in your pocket, and give yourself a better chance at finding a new job.

Don’t sign anything

At least not until you’ve taken your severance package home to read it properly. Check whether your ex-employer is offering salary continuance or a lump sum payment, and whether you’re still entitled to extended benefits or any kind of employment support. Although there’s no official deadline to complete this process, a week is typical. That’s usually enough time to get legal advice if you feel that’s necessary.

Keep it together

You’re probably feeling shocked or worried about the sudden change in your financial status. Who wouldn’t be? Yet the moment you hear the words, “Effective immediately,” you need to zip it and start listening. Not only will you be more likely to take in vital information, starting a shouting match does nothing but damage your professional reputation. Definitely a no-no heading into a job search.

Read more

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