The PMI Puz­zle

In­crease your busi­ness’ pro­duc­tiv­ity, staff turnover and morale with Pri­vate Med­i­cal In­sur­ance

EDP Norfolk - - PROMOTION -

The say­ing goes: ‘train peo­ple well enough so they can leave, treat them well enough so they don’t want to’. Sounds sim­ple enough, but how easy is it to achieve in re­al­ity? While for some be­ing treated well may mean pizza on Fri­days, oth­ers mea­sure it through some­thing more like hav­ing ac­cess to a sup­port­ive Hu­man Re­sources team.

Pri­vate Med­i­cal In­sur­ance (PMI) is a pow­er­ful tool to help you treat staff well but pro­vides nu­mer­ous ben­e­fits to busi­nesses. Ben­e­fits in­clude ex­clu­sive ac­cess to GP, phys­io­ther­apy, di­ag­nos­tic and treat­ment services. Th­ese services are of­ten avail­able 24/7, mak­ing book­ing health ap­point­ments a sim­pler task. Sim­i­larly, at­tend­ing ap­point­ments in a pri­vate clinic means shorter wait­ing lists. With cur­rent max­i­mum NHS wait­ing time for nonur­gent, con­sul­tant-led treat­ment at 18 weeks hold­ing a PMI pol­icy, can sig­nif­i­cantly re­duce this time hav­ing a large im­pact on an em­ployee’s abil­ity to re­turn to work.

The em­ployer ben­e­fits are many, PMI is shown to re­duce ab­sen­teeism, en­hance pro­duc­tiv­ity, re­duce staff turnover, in­crease morale and im­prove com­pany im­age. For ex­am­ple, in 2016 the Of­fice of Na­tional Sta­tis­tics es­ti­mated over 4 days were lost an­nu­ally by in­di­vid­ual work­ers in the UK due to sick­ness or in­jury. Pro­vid­ing work­ers with PMI cover will not erad­i­cate ab­sences but it can help them re­cover quicker. Also sig­nif­i­cant is the ef­fect of PMI on re­duc­ing staff turnover, re­search re­vealed 76% of em­ploy­ees re­port good em­ployee ben­e­fits are one of the top rea­sons they re­main loyal to their com­pany.

The busi­ness world in­creas­ingly un­der­stands the links be­tween good health and en­hanced pro­duc­tiv­ity. Work­ers with pos­i­tive phys­i­cal and men­tal health are more likely to be open and co­op­er­a­tive. Ul­ti­mately lead­ing to in­creased pro­duc­tiv­ity.

We know sit­ting or stand­ing for pro­longed pe­ri­ods can cause con­sid­er­able mus­coskele­tal is­sues. Ad­di­tion­ally, work pres­sures can lead to men­tal stress. Vis­it­ing a phys­io­ther­a­pist or men­tal health pro­fes­sional can be costly but nec­es­sary to im­prove th­ese symp­toms. PMI can re­duce the fi­nan­cial bur­den by cov­er­ing th­ese costs, lead­ing to im­proved well­be­ing and work pro­duc­tiv­ity.

One PMI, part of the One Bro­ker Group works closely with busi­nesses to en­sure the PMI puz­zle is solved find­ing the right cover to fit in­di­vid­ual busi­ness needs. Cre­at­ing a pack­age to match the com­plex needs of the busi­ness and its em­ploy­ees. One PMI is In­cluded in a hand­ful of UK in­sur­ance bro­kers of­fer­ing an in­no­va­tive new health­care prod­uct from Equipsme, aimed at busi­nesses with 2-249 em­ploy­ees. One PMI of­fers ex­clu­sive ac­cess to cover specif­i­cally de­signed with af­ford­abil­ity in mind.

For in­di­vid­u­als and fam­i­lies, through to busi­nesses with a work­force of any size. One PMI poli­cies help to re­duce ab­sen­teeism, im­prove morale and re­ten­tion, re­duce the im­pact of back or neck dis­or­ders on your busi­ness or fam­ily.

It’s in­ter­est­ing that many peo­ple are still un­aware that they may be able to pass on their pen­sion sav­ings after their death. If you have un­spent pen­sion in the pot when you die, you can pass ben­e­fits on to any ben­e­fi­ciary – not just a spouse or de­pen­dant, as was the case un­der the rules be­fore April 2015.

This may pro­vide a par­tic­u­larly use­ful plan­ning op­por­tu­nity for those who have other sources of in­come – prop­erty or in­vest­ment in­come, for ex­am­ple – on which they can rely dur­ing their own re­tire­ment. The tax treat­ment of in­her­ited pen­sion ben­e­fits de­pends on whether the pen­sion holder is un­der age 75 on death.

If death oc­curs be­fore 75, any ben­e­fits passed on to heirs are free of tax. If it hap­pens after 75, the in­her­ited ben­e­fits are taxed at the re­cip­i­ent’s nor­mal rate of tax for their in­come level. In both cases, ben­e­fits can be passed on as a lump sum, a draw­down pen­sion or an an­nu­ity.

Th­ese rules ap­ply to funds that haven’t al­ready been used to buy an an­nu­ity for the pen­sion fund owner: if you have an an­nu­ity in pay­ment, you may need to check the terms of the con­tract to see how it deals with spouses and/or de­pen­dants.

The Life­time Al­lowance (LTA) for pen­sions still ap­plies and if the fund hasn’t been crys­tallised (used to pro­vide an in­come) be­fore the pen­sion holder’s death, it will be tested against the LTA at that point and any tax due will be charge­able. Cur­rently the LTA stands at £1,030,000. How­ever, any in­her­ited pen­sion ben­e­fits won’t count to­wards the re­cip­i­ent’s own LTA.

This is one fi­nan­cial ar­range­ment that doesn’t be­long

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