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How much is a Dad worth? - Part 1 (Vital Income Protection)


As another fathers day passes us by, its easy to forget what a dad is worth from a financial standing and few of us consider the implications of losing a father either permanently or through the loss of their income.

According to a recent survey by UK insurer Legal and General, the average British father is worth 23,000 per year but a large portion of families are leaving themselves unprotected from the chance of losing the income provided by Dad's and also from the cost of routine household chores which many fathers undertake.

The survey highlighted that only 6 out of every 10* dad's had any form of life insurance. Even fewer had any critical illness cover to protect them from the chance of illnesses such as heart attacks and strokes (3 out of 10*) and even fewer again (only 2 out of 10*) had chosen to protect their incomes from suffering an accident or illness that prevented them from working and bringing in their normal pay cheque.

So where would this leave most families if they suddenly lost a father's income?

Our fictional father

  • Father: John
  • Occupation: Factory Manager
  • Annual Salary: 23,000
  • Children: 2 (Molly, Aged 4 and Andrew, Aged 2)

John is a shift manager at a factory producing electrical goods. He has worked for the firm for 15 years and having started on the factory floor, has risen to the position of shift manager with a modest income. John currently has no family protection against death, suffering a critical illness or being unable to work because he is ill or injured.

John becomes injured and cannot work

One morning, on his way to work. John is involved in a car accident which badly damages his back. John is taken to hospital and whilst his injuries are not life threatening, he will be unable to work for the foreseeable future.

John's wife is a housewife and as such does not contribute any income to the family. John is the sole income producer and his family now stand to lose his 1500/month (after tax and deductions) income. His employer does not offer a sick pay scheme and whilst they will be happy for him to return to work in the future, they won't pay him in the meantime.

Within a short space of time John and his family are falling behind with their mortgage payments and utility bills. They are forced to streamline their monthly budget and completely cut out luxuries such as their satellite television and any plans for family holidays with Molly and Andrew.

If John had had some Income Protection insurance for his income, the policy could have immediately replaced his income and continued replacing it until he was fit enough to return to work. With his income replaced, John would have been free to recover in peace without the worry of his financial situation.

  • John could have claimed Statutory Sick Pay but this is only £86.70 per week** (as of 2013)
  • After 14 weeks John may be able to claim Employment and Support Allowance (formally known as Incapacity Benefit) at a rate between £100.15 and £106.50 per week**
  • Only 35% of people*** claiming Employment and Support Allowance return to work within 6 months of starting to claim.

* Source: Legal and General 'The cost of a dad' survey (May 2009)
** Source: Direct Gov - Employment and Support Allowance (April 2012)
*** Source: Age Concern (June 2009)