Mike, a Pinnacle Life Policy holder, talked to Patricia Thompson (a freelance writer) about his experience when he had a brain haemorrhage and how income protection helped him and his family.

Monthly payments and no pressure – income protection helps Mike’s road to recovery

Two years after taking out an income protection policy with Pinnacle Life, Mike suffered a brain haemorrhage, which has required a long period off work to recover.

“Making the claim for income protection with Pinnacle couldn’t have been simpler,” says Mike. “I made contact with Pinnacle and they rang me back and said, ‘This is what your policy is for.’”

As GM Sales and Marketing for an IT company, Mike, 56, from Wellington, was originally attracted to Pinnacle by the ease of accessing insurance online.

“I wanted to try that experience and it was very quick and simple. I set up life insurance for myself and my wife and income protection for me. I didn’t even have to speak to anyone.”

Income protection cover provides a regular monthly payment to help replace your income if you are unable to work due to illness or injury. In March 2018, Mike was cycling home from work when he developed a “huge headache”. When it didn’t abate he went to his local after hours surgery, where staff called an ambulance.

“I was in hospital for a week and was fortunate that I didn’t need surgery, as the bleed had stopped, but healing is all a matter of time. The injury affects everything you do. I can’t concentrate for very long and can only read, watch TV, work on the computer or even walk for short periods.

“I let work know that I would be away for an extended period and I’m on medical leave without pay. The Pinnacle income protection policy covers 70 per cent of my income for up to two years, and that’s been a life-saver. Without it we would have been in financial trouble.

“After this happened to me, lots of people at my work were rushing to get income protection cover. It’s like fire insurance. You don’t think you’ll have a house fire but you want to be covered for it.

“I’ve been off work for six months now. I’ve heard of people in similar situations who have had to go back to work sooner than they should as they don’t have income protection, and that doesn’t help with their recovery.”

Mike’s GP and his rehabilitation therapist assess his fitness to work and he just needs to update Pinnacle on the situation each month.

“I always deal with the same person at Pinnacle, Emma, so I feel there’s a relationship and she really understands my case. She gives me a call each month for a chat and I fill in the standard forms. It’s just really easy, there’s never any pressure on me.

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