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SME Client Advice

Business Insurance • Business Succession / Continuity Planning • BEX • Keyperson 

So you want to move your business revenue away from a reliance on commissions to fee-for-service and you see business succession planning, a sub-set of the estate planning discipline, as the way forward. We have everything you need here in the SME Client Advice section to get you up and running. All you need to do is set aside time to read and then implement.

Whilst all of this content is available throughout other sections of The Store, we have made it even easier for you to locate in one place.

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Lightbulb Idea IconQUICK TIP: To find content quickly, use SEARCH [above right] with quotation marks e.g. "Estate Planning"; "Trauma"; "Claims", etc.

7 Threats Your Clients With Business Partners Should Consider
If you are a practising adviser, you will most certainly have a percentage of personal clients who are also SME business owners including some with one or more business partners e.g. medical, veterinary, legal, pharmacy, building, etc. This presents both a business risk and a business opportunity for you. Here's why.
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Avoiding Income Protection Slip ups
Sole traders are in a particularly vulnerable tax position if they claim income protection benefits and their business expenses and income continues. If there are business losses at the end of the tax year, they could get a rude shock.
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Breaking Into Businesss Insurance
by Brant Dillon, Rob McAdam, Dave Woodman Adviser, accountant and business client come together for a case study ‘what’, ‘why’ 'who' and ‘how-to’ around why you should advise on business insurance or as we prefer to refer to it, Business Succession Planning.
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Business Client To Contact For Review In Certain Circumstances
We will review your needs periodically. If however any of the following events occurs meanwhile, please contact us and we will assess the impact this may have on your cover requirements: • You remove your business overdraft or discharge other debt • Cont...
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Business Expenses
You are in a position where your generated income is required to cover two lots of expenses – the family budget and the business expenses. I am recommending that we include cover for the eligible business expenses, so that... cont...
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Business Expenses - Surviving The Jaws Of Misfortune
Business expense insurance articles should always be categorised as marketing articles no matter what their technical content - because very simply not enough is provided to clients who need it! Are you providing enough of your business clients with BEX cover?
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Business Expenses - The Forgotten Treasure
It's easy to offer business expenses to your clients but it is rarely done. This is an overview which could form the basis of a training presentation to advisers or a brief seminar presentation to SME clients.
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Business Expenses Breakdown
by Chantelle Kidd - Financial Adviser The missing link in the business insurance package. Yes, business expenses insurance policies do pay, if you know how to assess the 'right' fit for the business' structure and choose products accordingly.
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Business Expenses Insurance
Your current cashflow is covering certain business expenses which would continue should you be unable to work in the short term. We are recommending that you insure these expenses, cont...
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Business Structure Entity Tree Word Template
Do you draw a business structure or entity tree with your SME business clients? You should be for many reasons. If you are or want to but want to add a more polished, professional look when re-presenting this tree/diagram back to the client (via your advice document maybe) or at review time, use this editable Microsoft Word .docx template with all the icons and lines you need to create a professional record of your client's current business circumstances. There is a personal client version available too.
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Business Succession Planning: Keyperson Insurances
This looks specifically at the keyperson area of SME advice and addresses all the product solutions for the common risks. It also importantly refers to the keyperson needs of corporates, which require subtly different advice delivery.
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Client Engagement - Client Not Proceeding With Advice: Business
This letter acknowledges to the adviser, for your files, that the client is responsible for the decision not to seek to undergo a life risk advice process. It may even cause the client to rethink this decision but at worst it puts the ball back in their court for having decided to take the risk of ‘self-insurance’. Send to client as an attachment to: “Adviser acknowledgment of no advice taken”, for signature and return template These are referred to in the Checklist for the first meeting.
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Client Engagement - Confirm Client Appointment - Business
Dear [Insert client name here], Thank you for your time today. I am writing to confirm the appointment made for <you and business partner/s name> on <date> at <time>. The location of the meeting will be <full address> and the number to call if you have any queries is <phone number>. The goal which we should all...
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Client Policy Retention Letter
A letter to your client about renewing personal and/or business insurance: a reminder of why they have their protection in place. This letter is to defray any likelihood of lapse as each of a client's various insurances comes up for renewal. You may choose to send only one per year or one for each policy renewal time. The message – no-one expects to claim but they do - is still a good one to be reminded of and the letter should alter each year as the industry claims paid stats are published by The Risk Store (which should accompany this letter). cont...
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Estate Planning - Navigating The Right Advice Path
Being the pivotal point in your clients’ estate and business succession planning is a key ingredient in the crucial client relationship. How do you navigate that fine line between being a great facilitator and giving unauthorised advice? Peter McKnoulty from McCullough Robertson Lawyers tells how. See also the video, the MP3 audio version and the text transcript.
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Estate Planning - Navigating The Right Advice Path
This is a word-for-word transcript of a very informing webinar presentation on estate planning by Peter McKnoulty, senior partner of Brisbane based McCullough Robertson Lawyers. McCullough Robertson are one of the largest and most experienced estate planning law firms in Australia today. If you intend to offer estate planning based life risk advice, this is one paper you should read. See also the video, the slide presentation and the MP3 audio versions too.
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Family Tree Word Template
Do you draw a family tree with your personal clients? You should be for many reasons. If you are or want to but want to add a more polished, professional look when re-presenting this tree/diagram back to the client (via your advice document maybe) or at review time, use this editable Microsoft Word .docx template with all the icons and lines you need to create a professional record of your client's current circumstances.
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How Are Your SME Language Skills?
by Sue Laing - Founder & Technical Manager - The Risk Store A fast-paced, all-you-want-to-know-in-overview relationship skills session for those grappling with SME engagement.
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Learning To Speak The Language - The SME Mindset
Engaging a small to medium enterprise (SME) client in a discussion on risk management demands an empathy with their 'world' and particularly their emotional drivers and this can only be achieved by learning to 'speak' their language - what can you expect them to be concerned about?
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Martin & Michael - A Business Succession Planning Case Study
When this interview was conducted on the main platform at one of The Risk Store's Annual Life Risk Forums, it created quite a wave of awareness of the practical outcomes of business succession planning. This is an emotional, real view of just what happens when a business partner suffers a very serious illness and remains alive to be a part of the withdrawal process from the business and the eventual outcomes for the business. It also highlights just what is in store for the ‘unaffected’ partner...who is in fact far from being ‘unaffected’. See also the video, and the MP3 audio version.
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Needs Analysis Guide for Business Expenses
Needs analysis for business expenses is by its nature straightforward. Read this guide to assist your needs analysis learning
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Notification & Acknowledgment – Client Death: Business Insurance
Claims. We all hope it never eventuates for your clients. But for some of your clients, it will be something they will have to do – submit a claim. To show your value (remember, those fees you charge), you can assist the client in this process. This great client communication letter / email template is ready to copy, paste and use when needed.
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One Partner Declined for Business Insurance
There remains a need for your business partners to proceed with their insurance applications as proposed. The funding of the transfer of equity in the event of your death or disablement or critical illness will need to be discussed as a separate financial planning strategy. However... cont...
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One Partner Declined for Business Insurance
There remains a need for your business partners to proceed with their insurance applications as proposed. The funding of the transfer of equity in the event of your death or disablement or critical illness will need to be discussed as... cont...
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Podcast : Estate Planning - Navigating The Right Advice Path
Peter McKnoulty from McCullough Robertson Lawyers talks about being the pivotal point in your clients’ estate and business succession planning - this is a key ingredient in the crucial client relationship. How do you navigate that fine line between being a great facilitator and giving unauthorised advice? See also the video, the slide presentation and the text transcript. Duration 46:00min Size 6.7 MB
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Podcast : Martin & Michael - A Business Succession Planning Case Study
When this interview was conducted on the main platform at The Risk Store's Annual Life Risk Forum, it created quite a wave of awareness of the practical outcomes of business succession planning. This is an emotional, real view of just what happens when a business partner suffers a very serious illness and remains alive to be a part of the withdrawal process from the business and the eventual outcomes for the business. It also highlights just what is in store for the 'unaffected' partner...who is in fact far from being 'unaffected'. See also the video, and the text transcript. The generic but critical content of this presentation is as current now as it ever was - it is conceptual and as such invaluable for client engagement lessons. Duration 27:00min Size 8.5 MB
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Podcast : Trauma In Business Insurance
The use of trauma (critical illness) in business succession planning and the need to include trauma into the funding arrangements for business partners has always been a real challenge for advisers and spawns much debate. Matt Burgess, formally of McCullough Robertson Lawyers (now co-founder of View Legal) discusses what the issues are and how to meet them head-on and effectively for these clients and still achieve a robust and acceptable outcome. See also the video, the slide presentation and the text transcript. Duration 55:00min Size 7.6 MB
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RR Issue 012 - Securing the new SME - before it has a value
Looking at debt protection If you have a working relationship with an accounting practice, you will know that it is common for accountants to be concerned for newly established businesses and to refer the proprietors for cover such as income protection. There's more to a new business, though, than just the personal covers.
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RR Issue 045 - Is blood really thicker than water?
The effect on families when money's at stake This great estate planning case study - There's a dispute going on in Queensland at the moment which has seen a de facto widow wait 3 years already since her husband and business partner's death, only to still not have a resolution of the estate.
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RR Issue 051 - Hitting the ceiling will cost at retirement
New effects on super funding + insurance in super as a combined strategy (how the new caps will apply to insurance premiums in super and how this might clash with retirement funding)...
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RR Issue 059 - I didn't know that - I don't have a HR department!
A story of probationary staff problems How often has an issue arisen in the middle of your day, just when you are focused outwards on your clients, that forces you to stop and re-focus your efforts inwards, to the business? Commonly this will be a staff crisis.
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RR Issue 076 - "Prove to me that I need trauma"
What clients are really asking when they question what serious illnesses will cost them We receive a lot of calls for help with information on the ‘average’ costs of a heart attack or cancer and we always struggle with these requests...
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RR Issue 095 - It Can Happen To Anyone
A summary of a report by the National Centre for Social and Economic Modelling . Based on 2008 statistics, 18 Australian families lose a working age parent every day...
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RR Issue 111 - How Many Sole Proprietors Have You Left Out In The Cold?
Challenging question? It’s clear that the sole proprietor demographic could easily be measured as having been left out in the cold, in the light of their less than adequate business succession planning and the lack of attention their demographic attracts in our own industry press.
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RR Issue 152 - Don’t Regret Your Clients Lack Of Will
With our webinar series on the adviser’s role in estate planning just successfully delivered, it’s timely to add some practical pointers to the mix, for when the client actually dies.
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RR Issue 163 - Claims = Counselling
Business Succession Planner, Adam Smith, shares with us a great succession case study on 3 pharmacists and things didn’t end well! The Tale of The Week - we compare the risk store’s industry claims stats to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) death causes stats. Interesting stuff.
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RR Issue 177 - SME Engagement Made Easy!
We have learned that the most difficult thing to get across to advisers is how hard they make it for SME clients to understand what business succession planning does. This is a short but meaty, practical, description of the ideal first meeting with an SME. The Tale of The Week is another FOS case study. You won’t believe this one!
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RR Issue 182 - 7 threats your clients with business partners should consider
If you are a practising adviser reading this, you will most certainly have a percentage of personal clients who are also SME business owners including some with one or more business partners e.g. medical, veterinary, legal, pharmacy, building, etc. This presents both a business risk and a business opportunity for you. Here's why. The Tale of The Week is about claims assistance case studies from the real world.
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Targeting SMEs Through Business Succession Planning
Engaging a small to medium enterprise business client in a discussion on risk management demands an empathy with their 'world' and particularly their emotional drivers. When advice is delivered it needs to mirror that empathy. This article examines why it can still be difficult to target this market, and how this difficulty can be overcome. Adding business succession or continuity planning to your activities can result in increased revenue (between 4-9 times compared to personal advice), and a client base you otherwise may not have had the means to capture.
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The Secrets of Succession
Debunking the myths that seem to keep advisers away from the all-important advice area of business succession planning and insurances. There is so much hype that is simply not true so these are all examined one-by-one.
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Trauma - A Business Insurance Necessity - Part 1
Trauma benefits can play a significant role in business risk management outcomes and, statistically, a trauma claim is more likely across most business owners’ age groups, than a death claim. However, many advisers have struggled to get a handle on where trauma can fit within a business succession funding package. This is a detailed 8-page article inc case study examples, focusing on the buy/sell issues. [See Part 2 for key person and debt protection issues.]
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Trauma In Business Insurance
The use of Trauma in business succession planning and the need to include trauma into the funding arrangements for business partners has always been a real challenge for advisers and spawns much debate. Matt Burgess from McCullough Robertson Lawyers discussed what the issues are and how to meet them head-on and effectively for these clients and still achieve a robust and acceptable outcome. See also the video, the MP3 audio version and the text transcript in the store.
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Trauma In Key Person & Debt Protection Cover - Part 2
This article discusses the use of trauma in the other side of business succession planning: key person and debt protection. In addition the taxation of premiums and benefits in these scenarios is described as well as policy ownership options and rationale. This is a detailed 10-page article.
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Using the Living Insurances in Business Succession...Successfully!
by Brant Dillon and Matthew Burgess - Financial Adviser and Trainer | Estate Planning Lawyer and Expert Meeting the particular challenges of these products' application to business insurances.
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Using The Right Signal Flags For SMEs To Read
by Sue Laing - Founder & Technical Manager, The Risk Store There are lots of technical sessions on business succession planning but very few on how to get from the first introduction to the final recommendations - i.e. how to engage the business in embarking into a relationship with you for this important advice area. It's critical to get this right. Sue's tips and 'scripts' are tried and proven now, after having delivered this to hundreds of advisers over the last few years.
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Video: Trauma & Buy/Sell Deeds
What Happens When Things Don't Go According To Plan? Another great learning session hosted by the risk store and presented by leading estate planning and business succession planning law firm, McCullough Robertson Lawyers based in Brisbane. This is a must see video for advisers working with SME clients, wanting to fully understand the ramifications and benefits of incorporating Trauma cover as part of your advice solution. Note: we apologise for the lo-res, but still watchable version. Duration 1:07:36
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Video: Trauma In Business Insurance
The use of trauma in business succession planning and the need to include trauma into the funding arrangements for business partners has always been a real challenge for advisers and spawns much debate. Matt Burgess from McCullough Robertson Lawyers discussed what the issues are and how to meet them head-on and effectively for these clients and still achieve a robust and acceptable outcome. See also the slide presentation, the text transcript and the MP3 audio version. Note: we apologise for the lo-res, but still watchable version. Duration 55:00
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Webinar Transcript: Trauma In Business Insurance
Matt Burgess formally of McCullough Robertson Lawyers presents the use of trauma in business succession planning and the need to include trauma into the funding arrangements for business partners has always been a real challenge for advisers and spawns much debate. This session discussed what the issues are and how to meet them head-on and effectively for these clients and still achieve a robust and acceptable outcome. See also the video, the slide presentation and the MP3 audio version.
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