The risks you need to manage when self-employed

Being self-employed has awesome perks. You can trade in the stuffy cubical for a forest view, set your own hours, and choose your own projects.

But there are also risks. These could affect your ability to work and to meet your financial obligations. You should understand your risks, and use insurance to manage them. 

Your Risk

Inability to work

1 in 5 Canadians live with a disability that limits their ability to work, such as back or neck pain, depression or cancer. This disability can emerge unexpectedly, or result from an accident. The average length of a disability is 3 years. Most Canadians do not have the financial buffer to be out of work for that long. 

Insurance to manage risk

Personal accident insurance, disability insurance, critical illness insurance.

Serious illness

Over half of Canadians will be diagnosed with a critical illness such as cancer or a stroke. If self-employed and without benefits, a diagnosis can have severe financial consequences. This includes income lost when you are undergoing treatment. It also includes medical costs that are not covered under provincial health plans. 

Insurance to manage risk

Disability insurance, critical illness insurance.

Loss of life

Most of us can expect to live long, and productive lives. But the tragedy of death can be magnified by devastating financial consequences, from loss of income, to unpaid debt. Even if the risk of death is low when you are young, the cost of this risk is extremely high if it were to materialize and could leave a financial burden on loved ones. 

Insurance to manage risk

Term life insurance.

Widespread virus

Thousands of Canadians were infected with the coronavirus and had to leave work for weeks, or months, to recover. The result was lost income, and mounting debt. Scientists have warned us that another wave of the virus, or a similar virus, could emerge again.

Insurance to manage risk

Disability insurance.