If you are self-employed or work as a contractor to someone then you have options for your ACC cover. Many people don’t take up the best option for themselves, simply letting the state decide for them. This ignores the opportunity to get funds faster and compensation higher.
If you’re self-employed or a contractor then you’ll automatically be on CoverPlus. This is the standard cover provided by ACC.
If you’ve had an accident and can’t work, it will pay your compensation at up to 80% of your taxable income based on the most recently completed financial year. For example, if you earn $52,000 per year on CoverPlus you’d get up to 80% of that each week, which is $800 before tax.
Weekly compensation payments start a week after your injury, and over and above this, ACC will help cover the cost of your treatment and rehabilitation.
Sounds good doesn’t it?
But let’s take a moment to consider what this actually means. As a self-employed person, it might be that you are purposefully reducing your income, choosing to keep money in your business. At claim time, this will do you no favours under ACC’s standard scheme.
With the standard scheme, you will be required to prove your earning and this takes time, slowing up your compensation payments.
CoverPlus Extra is an optional cover product that allows you to choose how much of your income you want covered if you have an accident and can’t work. ACC will 100% of the agreed cover divided into weekly payments until you can get back to full-time work. For example, if you’re entitled to $52,000 per year as your cover, we’ll pay 100% of that amount each week, which is $1000 before tax.
What’s the catch? Well, there isn’t one other than you need to decide on the amount of cover you want and then negotiate with ACC to get them to accept this amount and underwrite the cover.
CoverPlus Extra really comes into its own if you have income that fluctuates all the time, perhaps seasonal variations for instance. With CoverPlus Extra you will have a set amount of compensation regardless of this seasonality.
With CoverPlus Extra you can even negotiate for compensation that is higher than your annual earnings. You choose the rate, so you can reduce your yearly premium by going lower than 80% or increase by going for 150% for instance. The beauty of CoverPlus Extra is that you have control and you have flexibility.
There are thousands of self-employed people missing out on the benefits of CoverPlus Extra. If you’re one of them, then talk to one of our advisers and we can help you make your claim.