At age 45, Steve was permanently disabled in a workplace accident. Steve’s income supported his wife Jan & three children, one of whom was disabled. After several years battling WorkCover, Steve engaged a lawyer who advised taking the first offer. This amounted to a 7-figure payout.
Steve’s lawyer promptly took 30% of the payment and another 10% went to repaying Workcover, Centrelink & Medicare. His lawyer then incorrectly advised Steve his income protection policy would cease and the family would be ineligible for Centrelink for 5 years.
After engaging Fowler’s to make the most of the payout, we analysed the family’s goals and situation. First, we directed the payment into super and had Steve assessed by doctors to meet a condition of release meaning it would provide an income tax free. The we looked at ways to support that income through Centrelink, identifying Jan was eligible for a carer’s payment for their disabled son. Finally, we did a deep dive into Steve’s income protection policy, it took 5 months of work, but our advocacy ensured no offset on the policy and it would continue to pay.
Steve’s outcome shows the difference between someone working for their client and someone working for a payment. His lawyer focused on a quick payment and then offered lazy and incorrect advice. The result would have been substantially diminished circumstances for the family. With several problems to solve, technical knowledge in insurance, Centrelink and superannuation, along with genuine interest in Steve’s case, Fowler’s advice resulted in a reliable income stream and certainty for the family.
- 20 Year income protection $44kpa indexed
- 5-year Centrelink exclusion reduced to 3 yrs
- Immediate carer’s payment eligibility $26kpa
- $500K in Centrelink exempt environment
- Payout immediately accessible