Partners Life mean business with new products launch

Partners Life is set to launch a range of business insurance products and has struck a deal with accounting giant Deloitte to provide forensic accounting services to advisers.

Friday, March 2nd 2012, 11:30AM

by Benn Bathgate

The company will take to the road next week to showcase its new Business Protection Policy, which includes benefits such as shareholder buyout cover, debt protection, permanent loss of key person cover, loss of revenue cover and total and permanent disability cover.

Partners Life managing director Naomi Ballantyne said talks with advisers' already active in the business insurance space had allowed them to develop products better suited to the market - especially around payment times for TPD and trauma policies.

"The issues with trauma and TPD around things like shareholder buyout is that Trauma can kick in  too soon, for example with a heart attack, also buy/sell agreements where it's not appropriate, or alternatively not kick in at all because they suffer from something that's not a covered condition."

Ballantyne said one example of their new benefits was called Total Long Term Disability.

"You need to be off work for three months then have a prognosis of being likely to be off work for at least a further six months, and that's when it pays," she said.

"It's also not going to wait for someone to say you're never going back to work, it just requires a medical practitioner to say you're not likely to be back at work for six months."

Ballantyne acknowledged that the complicated nature of assessing business insurance had resulted in fewer advisers operating in that space, and that insurers could do more to aid the advice community.

"There's a lot of demand from advisers wanting to get into that space but a lot of hesitance," she said.

"The adviser market understands that it needs to play in that market, we need to give them some support around how they understand the financials of a business."

Ballantyne said it was with this in mind that they approached Deloitte, saying the move would also provide services to Partners' underwriters and reinsurers.

"Also, to provide that expertise for advisers so that they can put together a recommendation for a client and say this is what you need. It's that kind of support that is needed to really give them confidence."

Benn Bathgate is a business reporter for ASSET and Good Returns, email story ideas to benn@goodreturns.co.nz

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