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Cold call changes insured's life

13 Dec, 6:39am by Matthew Martin

It takes a strong person to talk about their health issues on a live webcast but for Neville Greedus a series of life-changing medical events helped him realise the importance of having a top-quality adviser in his corner.

Greedus joined his insurance adviser Anand Srinivasan (Brisk Insurance), Partners Life managing director Naomi Ballantyne and Chatswood Consulting's Russell Hutchinson on a Financial Services Council conference webinar as a case study on the importance of insurance advisers and having the correct cover in place when the unthinkable happens.

While it's not the way Greedus would have liked his career to end, this is a good news story for insurers and advisers and started with a cold call to Greedus who was already contemplating changes to his cover.

In 2016, Greedus, who worked as an electrician for around 40 years received a cold call from an agent that led him to have a meeting with insurance adviser Anand Srinivasan.

Greedus said he wanted to reduce his premiums but after receiving advice from Srinivasan they put in place a range of specific policies including mortgage and income protection, total permanent disability and trauma cover.

"Insurance is a necessary evil...I was adamant I wanted to make my premiums lower but his package looked good and we ran with it," Greedus said.

Little did he know that meeting would be life-changing when in 2018 he damaged his shoulder putting him out of action.

While ACC declined his surgery, Srinivasan was working hard behind the scenes for his client and less than a day later received claim approval from Partners Life.

The surgery went ahead but a blood test revealed a major shock, Greedus also had prostate cancer.

To make matters worse and after another minor accident, Greedus also needed a knee replacement due to undiagnosed arthritis.

Unfortunately, Greedus cannot go back to work but said if it was not for his adviser and insurer he'd be struggling.

"The money - it still hasn't sunk in but it takes all the thoughts of how you are going to survive and the stress and worry away - so it's well worth having.

"Asking questions does not cost money, talk to a broker, ask them for claims examples. Ask how does your broker perform when it comes to a claim?

"If I had to make the claims myself, I probably would have fallen over."

Srinivasan said advisers need to be prepared, know their business and most of all, listen.

"He got all this money coming into this account, they were big amounts.

"Insurance is designed to pay and we made sure he was not financially insecure. I also warned Neville that ACC may not cover his claim but that his insurer would pay."

He said it was a classic example of a client listening to good advice, trusting their adviser, " an amazingly supportive claims team at Partners".

"We worked seamlessly with one goal - the outcome for the client.

"It was very important the products and solutions worked for him, his previous insurer would not have paid him a single dollar."

Ballantyne said "lightning can strike twice" and while a payout won't make a person rich it will replace the money an insured would lose.

"A lot of clients talk advisers out of increasing cover because they think they are paying too much."

She said a good adviser like Srinivasan makes sure a client has the right cover in place and holds the client's hand when it comes to claim time.

"Anand is a classic example of what an adviser should do. His previous adviser did not do a good job and left him alone for years...thankfully he said yes to that cold call."

Financial Planning