A Burden Relieved

A Burden Relieved

The first time that James Daoust, Jr. visited his clients, Joe and Theresa Mollicone, the couple rolled out a tray of cannolis. James became their financial advisor and over the next three decades sampled countless Italian specialties in the couple’s home. “He got hooked on Italian desserts,” Theresa says. Their close relationship is the reason the Mollicone’s are living comfortably today instead of struggling after a health crisis.

In the early years, James had helped the Mollicones with retirement plans as well as life, disability and health insurance, all of which they had to address on their own because each was self employed. Joe owned an excavation business, and Theresa ran a clothing boutique.

As Joe approached his 65th birthday and his disability insurance was about to expire, James suggested long term care insurance. The Mollicones were initially hesitant, but neither wanted to be a burden to the other or to their two adult children, so they purchased policies.

Less than six months later, Joe suffered a massive stroke that left him paralyzed on the right side and unable to speak. Three months after the stroke, the long-term care insurance policy started paying the maximum daily benefit and has been just enough to cover Joe’s homecare needs. Four years later Joe reached his payout limit, but continues to receive benefits because of his policy’s shared-care rider, which allows him to tap into the benefits from Theresa’s policy. To date, the insurance company has paid out more than $400,000 in benefits.

“If we didn’t have this insurance, caring for Joe would have depleted all the savings we had,” Theresa says. “Now I’m not afraid of running of out money.”

A Life Lived Fully but Wisely

A Life Lived Fully but Wisely

Greg Knoll lived life to the fullest. He loved sports cars, snowmobiles, speedboats–“anything that was loud and fast,” says Melissa, his wife. An economics major in college, he grew bored with his desk job at a mortgage company and opted for something more exciting. He joined the Minneapolis police department and became an undercover officer. But one area of life where he took no chances was with his family.

Greg met Melissa in college, and they married shortly after graduating. While still in their mid-20s, the two talked with their insurance professional, Joe Fox, CLU, ChFC, CLTC, about life insurance. They were young and healthy and didn’t expect to need it soon. But they had a new home with a mortgage and were ready to start a family. Greg already had the maximum amount of coverage he could get from his employer, but knew he needed more and bought it through Joe.

When Greg was 36, he began experiencing chronic heartburn that wouldn’t go away. After gall bladder surgery failed to cure it, doctors discovered a rare form of stomach cancer. When Greg passed away two years later, Melissa found herself unprepared for the aftermath. His death was “never part of the plan.” Fortunately, Joe was with her every step of the way, guiding her through the many personal and financial decisions that followed.

The life insurance proceeds paid off significant debts that had accumulated during Greg’s illness. They also allowed Melissa to pay off her mortgage and set up college funds for daughters Neva, 11, and Morgan, 6. “Without the insurance I wouldn’t have been able to stay in our house and provide a stable life for the girls,” says Melissa.

A Career Lost, but Not a Way of Life

A Career Lost, but Not a Way of Life

At 45, attorney Peter Zatir attributed the fatigue he was feeling to middle age. Add to that a busy law practice and five active kids—the youngest just a year old—and it’s easy to see how he could have written off the early signs of a serious illness. When he finally visited his doctor, the diagnosis was grim. He had an aggressive form of thyroid cancer and was given less than a year to live.

As Peter lay awake at night, his financial situation was one thing he didn’t lose sleep over. When Peter and his partner opened their law practice, they knew they needed insurance advice and turned to Brent Kimball, CFP, CLU, ChFC, who convinced them to protect their incomes and the business with disability insurance.

Shortly after Peter stopped working to focus on fighting his disease, the individual disability insurance policy he purchased began paying a monthly benefit. A year later, Peter had outlived his prognosis, but knew with a damaged larynx that he could never return to the courtroom to litigate cases. Because the partners had set up a buy-sell agreement and funded it with a disability buy-out policy, Peter was compensated for his half of the business, and his partner became the sole owner.

An experimental drug reduced Peter’s tumor, which surgeons were then able to operate on. Now, almost six years after his diagnosis, Peter is doing better, and has been able to maintain his family’s standard of living. He continues to receive benefits from his individual disability policy, and his retirement is being funded thanks to an additional disability policy he had in place for that purpose. “I dread where we would be today if I hadn’t taken Brent’s advice,” he says.

Keeping a Family and a Business Afloat

Keeping a Family and a Business Afloat

Brigette Hunter was just 27, and a new mother, when she was widowed. Her husband, Matt, was killed in a car accident. To compound her pain, she had to borrow money from her parents to pay for Matt’s funeral, as he had no life insurance.

Just six months later, friends introduced Brigette to Anthony. She wasn’t looking for a relationship, but Anthony was persistent. “He could sell snow to an Eskimo,” Brigette says. They married and soon opened their own electrical business. With the business and three children to support, the couple bought small life insurance policies. Lisa Rinehart, an insurance professional who met them several years later, determined that they needed considerably more life insurance, and helped them through the buying process.

A year later, Anthony found a bump on his chin. He had recently walked through a spider web at a job site and assumed it was a bite. But it didn’t go away, and Anthony learned it was melanoma, a cancer he had battled as a teenager. It soon spread to his lungs, brain and bones.

Still wanting to provide for his family, Anthony invoked a provision in one of his life insurance policies that allowed him to access a portion of the death benefit, due to his terminal diagnosis. With that money, the Hunters were able to buy a nicer home while he was still alive. He oversaw renovations and was able to spend a month in the house before he died at 34.

The remaining money from Anthony’s policies helped Brigette pay off medical bills and meet her household expenses. It also kept the business afloat. She could make payroll and pay vendors while she and her foreman reassured clients that the business would continue. “Without the money I would have had to close,” she says.

Still Watching Over Them

Still Watching Over Them

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It was close to 11 p.m. the December night when boxer Oscar de la Hoya lost his fight to Manny Pacquiao. The Virgens were saying goodbye to their extended family after watching the match together. Still basking in the glow of family and good food, they headed off to their house. On the way, their pickup was slammed by a hit-and-run driver. The truck rolled over, pinning Nicolas and wife Teresa inside. Son Gabriel and daughter Mayra managed to crawl out and were only slightly injured. When rescue workers arrived, Teresa was already dead. Nicolas had three broken vertebrae and multiple fractures in his arms. “In one second your life changes,” Nicolas says.

After their injuries were tended to, the Virgens started picking up the pieces. Thankfully Teresa had life insurance to help them do it. Initially the couple wasn’t convinced that Teresa needed a policy of her own since she did not work outside the home. As a building contractor, Nicolas saw the rationale for his own life insurance. But their insurance professional Irene Henry made the case that there would be expenses if something were to happen to Teresa. “Think of all the things that Teresa does,” Irene recalls explaining to them.

The life insurance allowed them to pay bills while Nicolas was out of work for nearly two years recovering from his injuries, including an amputated finger. It also helped with college expenses for Mayra and her older sister, Susana. If not for the insurance, Nicolas is certain that his family would have lost their home. “It’s like Teresa is still watching over us and taking care of us,” he says.

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