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Why do business with Marathon Benefits in Calgary?

By on January 4, 2015

Why do business with us?

At Marathon Benefits, we help people to sleep better.  We understand that disease, accidents and death create financial hardship. This hardship makes innocent spouses, children and business partners suffer financial stresses that in turn create family and business issues.We, professionals in the financial world, have the unique ability to solve these issues for a relatively small monthly premium.

We do this by working with you and/or your business to help discover the issues that keep you awake at night. (i.e. values, morals & taxes).

Benefits packages in Calgary for families and businesses

Once we understand the issues we use our resources, training & available tools to address them.

If and when something goes wrong in the lives of our clients, we show up to lend a hand and we usually bring a big cheque as well.

By the way, we also have some great insurance products!

Please Contact Us Today for a Quote!

Are you saving money? – Some mistakes to avoid

By on October 10, 2014

Are you saving as much money as you would like to?

Most of us are trying to save money. Some people are better then others at this craft but no matter which side of the camp we are at we can always use some tips to help us along.

I came across this article that reveals some useful tips, not that we never heard of most of them, but when put together like this it does make one take a closer look at what exactly needs to be done to save more money.

Here is the article. Simply click on the image.

Money saving tips Calgary

Good news from the recent Alberta budget update

By on March 18, 2013

Good news from the recent Alberta budget update

 

The Alberta 2013 budget brought several changes to government-sponsored benefit programs that are expected to help employer group plans in Alberta.

Introduction of “PharmaCare”

The most significant change was the announcement of a “PharmaCare” program to be implemented on January 1, 2014 “to ensure drug and supplementary health benefit coverage for all Albertans”.

The new program will be income-based and may provide coverage for such supplementary benefits as ambulance, chiropractic and psychology services.  Details are not known.

The Minister of Health has been reported in the media stating that the new program will likely be similar to British Columbia’s PharmaCare Program. The BC program is structured on income-based deductibles. Employer group plans will continue to play a vital role as the majority of individuals will not accrue enough expenses in a given year to satisfy their deductible before government sponsored benefits apply. In addition, employer group plans will continue to provide important benefits as PharmaCare formularies are more limited than those provided through employer based group plans.

The B.C. model can be used as an example of how such a program might work. In B.C., a family with a net income of $60,000 would have to satisfy a yearly deductible of $1,800 in eligible drug expenses before PharmaCare would become available. PharmaCare would then pay 70 per cent of the cost for eligible products until an annual out-of-pocket maximum of $2,400 is reached upon which full coverage would be provided for the remainder of the year with no deductible.

If the new PharmaCare program is implemented as suggested, we expect this program could have a positive impact on group benefit plans by providing an additional measure of protection against extreme high cost drug products such as those for rare diseases.

Generic drug prices to be reduced
In conjunction with its 2013 budget, the Government of Alberta announced that it is reducing the price it pays for all generic drugs to 18 per cent of the brand name equivalent, down from 35 per cent. This continues the previous strategy of generic price reductions that began in 2009.

The potential impact of this change has yet to be evaluated.

Diabetes care enhanced
The provincial budget also includes an announcement that diabetes care will be enhanced through a new Insulin Pump program starting spring 2013 for Albertans with Type 1 diabetes. Albertans who are eligible will be provided 100 per cent coverage for insulin pumps and basic supplies. More information about this program will be announced closer to the implementation date.

Mortgage Insurance vs. Life Insurance

By on May 16, 2012

Mortgage Insurance vs. Life Insurance

 

You just bought a house. Now you are sitting with your mortgage broker, or your bank, and you are offered Mortgage Insurance. The questions that come to your mind probably are:

  • What do I do?
  • Do I need to take this coverage?
  • What are my options?
  • Can I take it now and cancel it later?

What do I do? Mortgage insurance is better than nothing, but it does have some issues. See the chart below for a comparison between Mortgage Insurance and Term Life to protect your mortgage.

Do I need to take this coverage? In Canada, tied selling is not legal. As such, you do not need to take the coverage offered by your lender. They will still provide financing for your mortgage.

What are my options? You can take the lender’s mortgage insurance or you can find a good insurance broker and get life insurance.

Can I take it now and cancel at any time? So you took the coverage and now you are wondering what you can do. You can cancel your mortgage insurance with no penalty. Usually 30 days notice in writing will do the job. However, you should apply for your life insurance and wait for the policy to arrive before cancelling. As I said earlier, mortgage insurance is better than nothing. Once your broker hands you your new policy, you can cancel your mortgage policy right away.

CBC Market Place did a review of the coverage offered by some lending institutions. You can read the article and watch the video at:

 http://www.cbc.ca/player/News/TV+Shows/Marketplace/ID/1581783345/

If you have questions or want a quote, always feel free to call us. We will provide a no obligation quote from the top 25 Life Insurers in Canada.

Mortgage Insurance

Term Life Insurance

Ownership of the contract

The Bank or Lending Institution

You

Amount of insurance

Declines as you pay off your mortgage

Remains the same unless you change it

Cost of insurance

Remains the same even though your coverage decreases

If you move houses or mortgage companies, your new cost of insurance will be based on your new age and therefore higher.

Remains the same for the length of time you choose.

You can move houses, mortgage companies, or provinces.

Change in contract

Can change without your permission

Only you can make changes, as long as you maintain the premium payment

Who is paid on death

The Bank.

Only the outstanding balance is paid

Your chosen beneficiary.

The full amount of the insurance contract

When is underwriting done

In most cases, at time of claim. This means the insurance company may determine you are not eligible for a payout even though you have been paying premiums. For instance, a claim may be denied because an investigation of your medical records indicates you once had high blood pressure or high cholesterol.

When you apply for individual insurance through a licensed insurance broker your medical history will be examined before a policy is issued. The insurance broker will ask detailed questions and may arrange for a nurse to conduct a physical. Once a policy is issued, it is guaranteed (Even if you have some existing medical problems).

 Costs:

In most cases, Term Life is less expensive then Mortgage Insurance. ($250,000 of coverage is illustrated below) Mortgage premiums are a sample from one lender.

For a couple aged

Monthly bank mortgage insurance premiums*

Term 10 monthly life rates Provided through

Marathon Benefit Corp

Term 20 monthly life rates Provided through

Marathon Benefit Corp

30

$35.30

$19.80

$29

35

$35.50

$24.08

$39

40

$76.25

$31.05

$53

45

$113.25

$43.20

$85

50

$159.25

$65.25

$138

 

200 – 321 – 19 ST NW         Calgary         Alberta         T2N 2J2

Phone: (403) 238-7343         Fax: (403) 206-7400

Toll Free: 888-488-7343

www.marathonbenefits.com

Increase Charitable Giving, And Charitable Tax Credits, With Life Insurance

By on April 7, 2011

Increase Charitable Giving, And Charitable Tax Credits, With Life Insurance

When I was younger I was a rock climber. Through climbing I learned about a clothing brand named Patagonia, and a man named Yves Chouinard. This individual loved the outdoors and travelled to far off countries to climb the hardest mountains possible. In his travels he found villages that needed lots of help, yet there was not much he could do. Yves went on to create Patagonia with two goals:

1. Create fantastic gear that could withstand the harshest of climates.
2. Use profits from his company to help support those communities with the fewest resources.

Patagonia has come a long way. It is now one of the top athletic wear companies in the world and they fund millions of dollars into charities and expeditions ever year.

You may wonder why I am writing about Yves & Patagonia in an article about Charitable Giving and Life Insurance. I do so as Yves is my inspiration for creating Marathon Benefit Corp. One of the priorities at Marathon is to help increase the flow of money to charitable organizations. Insurance is a very efficient way to do just that.

Below are some examples of how charitable giving can work and how insurance can magnify your donation and your tax credits* at the same time (or deduction for a corporation). (*A tax credit is a direct reduction of your tax liability)

Donation & Tax Credit Options:

1. Most people just make annual donations and take the Tax Credit in that tax year. The 2010 tax credit was 49% (in Alberta) on amounts greater than $200. (i.e. if you donate $1000, your tax credit is worth approximately $490)

2. Many people leave a charitable legacy on death. That legacy will create a tax credit based on the total value of the legacy going to their charity. That legacy can be applied to their final estate taxes.

3. Some people create a foundation. Money transferred into the foundation is a tax credit in the year of the donation.

4. Through insurance, you can make an annual donation, a donation on death, or both. The result can magnify the benefit to your favorite charity and the tax benefit to you and your heirs

Insurance Options:

  1. With insurance you can assign the policy to your charity or foundation, and write off the annual premiums or final payout of the policy.
  2.  You can also have two policies. One can create an annual credit and the other can create a credit on death. On death the insurance benefit is what creates the credit.

For example; Take a healthy 55 year old male & 55 year old female. For $75,000 of insurance their premium is $1,000 / year for 20 years. They can take the annual $1,000 credit or they can take the one-time $75,000 credit when the policy pays out.

Foundations:

A foundation can be; a family foundation (private), a public foundation, a community foundation or a Donor Advised Fund (similar to a community foundation but managed by a financial institution)

The foundation option usually involves an annual donation to a foundation each year. Perhaps the donation is $10,000 / year. If they take $1,000 of that money they will have a remaining annual donation of $9,000 [The annual credit would be $4,410 (9,000 x 49%)]. Eventually the foundation will get an instant boost of $75,000 from the insurance. That insurance benefit would be worth $36,750 in the year of death, as a tax credit. It would take about 81 years of donating $1,000 / year to create that type of credit.

Another way of looking at this is that the tax credit on donations is 49%. By paying for insurance, and taking the credit on the value of the insurance payout, you increase your donation and your tax credit by 375%. This is based on a total amount paid of $20,000 because your actual donation is $75,000 (the amount of the insurance payout on death).

There are many options available. For a full review you should speak with your financial adviser & your accountant to ensure you get the greatest advantage of your available tax credits.

create tax credits with life insurance

Insurance Options:

  1. With insurance you can assign the policy to your charity or foundation, and write off the annual premiums or final payout of the policy.
  2.  You can also have two policies. One can create an annual credit and the other can create a credit on death. On death the insurance benefit is what creates the credit.

For example; Take a healthy 55 year old male & 55 year old female. For $75,000 of insurance their premium is $1,000 / year for 20 years. They can take the annual $1,000 credit or they can take the one-time $75,000 credit when the policy pays out.

The foundation option usually involves an annual donation to a foundation each year. Perhaps the donation is $10,000 / year. If they take $1,000 of that money they will have a remaining annual donation of $9,000 [The annual credit would be $4,410 (9,000 x 49%)]. Eventually the foundation will get an instant boost of $75,000 from the insurance. That insurance benefit would be worth $36,750 in the year of death, as a tax credit. It would take about 81 years of donating $1,000 / year to create that type of credit.

Another way of looking at this is that the tax credit on donations is 49%. By paying for insurance, and taking the credit on the value of the insurance payout, you increase your donation and your tax credit by 375%. This is based on a total amount paid of $20,000 because your actual donation is $75,000 (the amount of the insurance payout on death).

earn tax credit by giving through insurance

There are many options available. For a full review you should speak with your financial advisor & your accountant to ensure you get the greatest advantage of your available tax credits.