Simon, 57 and Susan, 55 were introduced to Ellerfield by long term clients of the firm.
Simon was a fly-in fly-out mine worker, earning $250k per year and Susan was a full time office admin who earned approximately $52k per year. Even though Susan worked full time, the family always relied on Simon’s income for all major expenses.
Unfortunately, Simon suffered from a workplace injury and was advised he could never work in the same role again. The couple were devastated as Simon expected to work for another 8 years. Both Simon and Susan have been married previously and had a late start on their journey to financial freedom. They were extremely worried about not having enough money for retirement, uncertainty around compensation payments, how they could maintain the same standard of living without Simon’s income. Adding to their stress levels, there were ongoing issues in relation to workers compensation and any potential insurance claims.
It was overwhelming for Simon and Susan and their world had turned upside down. How were they supposed to continue maintaining their usual standard of living with a significant drop in income? Is retirement even an option? Are there part-time jobs available for a 57 year old with a serious injury?
After a deep discovery process, it was clear that Simon would happily retire right away, if he could afford to. He has been a fly-in fly-out worker for 36 years and he was exhausted. Ellerfield undertook the following steps to assess if Simon and Susan could smile again:
- 4 hour discovery session to truly understand what drives them and gain a comprehensive understanding of their financial position
- Followed by detailed scenario analysis comparing different retirement dates, incomes, tax considerations, superannuation strategies, cash flow modelling, estate planning strategies, investment structures, goal funding analysis, longevity planning.
- Discussion with clients ensuring all assumptions and outcomes are understood before any decisions are made.
It turned out that Simon could retire right away even without the proceeds from the workers compensation claim or insurance payout. The icing on the cake: Susan can even choose to work part-time in order to spend more time with Simon and look after him. The cherry on the icing: They decided to move to the Coast to be closer to their kids now that Susan only needs to work part time.
With newly discovered options that never crossed their mind, Simon could officially retire, 8 years earlier than expected and Susan could halve her workload. Most importantly, they can still have the standard of living they desire.
Life gets bumpy sometimes, and there is no true lifelong security. It all depends on how we tackle the issues. And when we ran out of ideas, maybe we could ask ourselves, “Is that really all? Have we really discovered all the options we could have? Could we use some expertise advice?”. I believe we all can get something out of it.