More importantly, what would happen to your relatives if you died? Paul Avis, marketing director, group insurance, Canada Life, looks at why this difficult issue should not be sidestepped

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It happens. One in eight men and one in 12 women die during their working life. And what happens next? The loss of income could be devastating to the loved ones that are left behind. Utility bills, council tax, car loans, school/childcare/university fees, credit cards and day-to-day living costs are just some of the financial burdens your family would have to deal with. These continue even after a mortgage is paid off and, for those renting, could the roof over your loved ones’ heads be at risk? With planning you can achieve peace of mind should the worse happen.


Group Life Assurance is a valuable employee benefit that businesses can provide inexpensively. It pays out a lump sum payment to employees’ family or next of kin, should they die while employed by your organisation.

But what advantages will your business receive? When we surveyed 500 businesses, a range of reasons were given as to why it was thought to be a good idea to provide this cover.

  • 33% of businesses said it was an attractive benefit for employees
  • 24% offer this benefit to protect or support their employees
  • 20% say it fits with their caring company culture
  • 18% use Group Life Assurance as a recruitment or retention tool


However, a large percentage of employers admit to not knowing much about Group Life Assurance and many think it would be costly and take time to implement. These misconceptions could be standing in the way of offering a valuable benefit to their workforce.

  • Misconception 1: Group Life Assurance is expensive. Around nine in ten (91%) of employers thought that group life would cost more than 1% of salaries, with 9% assuming the cost would be more than 5% of salaries. Benefits can start at 0.1% of salary depending on the scheme design and workforce make-up. You can cover all employees for as little as £4 a month with our Simply Class Group Life Assurance and cover is usually allowable as a business expense against corporation tax.
  • Misconception 2: It’s too much hassle. Twenty-one per cent of employers said they don’t have the time or resources to administer this benefit. We’ve made it simple for you. Our Simply Class Group Life Assurance is a streamlined product we recently introduced to the market. There is no medical underwriting so no need to inform us of your employees’ medical history. Employees can be enrolled into our free Master Trust that manages the claim payment so you don’t have to. This also means benefits are paid tax free to beneficiaries.
  • Misconception 3: ‘Our employees won’t value this’ – something cited by 17% of employers. But 78% of employees with Group Life Assurance say they feel more valued. Canada Life can help you effectively communicate employee benefits with supporting materials and online videos.

Don’t let the lack of a well-rounded benefits package be the difference between you and a competitor in the war for talent. With pensions automatic enrolment, all employers will soon be offering a pension and Group Life Assurance is the next benefit you should be considering if you want to gain and retain staff.


With the average person spending more than 90,000 hours at work over a lifetime, it’s important to keep your team motivated.

Having a clearly communicated employee benefits package in place can significantly increase staff engagement and improve productivity. However, 65% of employers who have invested significantly in benefits for their staff don’t communicate this, hugely lessening the impact.


  • Company emails and intranet – Canada Life can support you with information to send out, such as FAQs
  • Company presentations – Canada Life can provide informative videos about specific benefits
  • Team meetings – Canada Life can provide you with a range of materials
  • Office notice boards – Canada Life can provide you with posters

Also it’s important to think about opportunities to talk about benefits package e.g. when staff are recruited, or during performance reviews and staff conferences.

Investing in Group Life Assurance cover for your employees not only provides peace of mind for your staff but helps promote a happy workplace.

If you would like to talk about how you can best implement Group Life Assurance into your benefits package, please contact your pension and benefits adviser and ask them to explain its benefits and specifically Simply Class Group Life Assurance.