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What I Wish I Knew Then About Income Protection

What I Wish I Knew Then About Income Protection

April 26, 2021

I have been in the financial services industry since 2015. Prior to that, I worked with my father managing the operations of our family’s plumbing supply company in Kingston, New York. Being the son of a successful entrepreneur exposed me to situations most kids never see or hear.

We lived a good life, but cash was always tight. On many occasions at home and on sales rides with him I recall Dad saying, “If I break my leg…we are homeless!” His fears weren’t entirely without merit. If he broke his leg, he couldn’t drive. This would prevent him from selling and, quite possibly, keep us from eating.

When I turned 19, I started working for my father. Our business was growing. We had a two-person sales team servicing double the number of clients. We prepared to exercise our first corporate expansion.

In early 2001 we launched our new location. We were firing on all cylinders. Soon after, I remember my father continually complaining about being tired. Since “being tired” is the typical state of a Small Business Owner I didn’t think much about it. We kept operating under our normal guidelines until the moment everything changed.

One day, I arrived for our daily 5:00 AM meeting and the lights were off. Alarm bells went off. I never beat Dad to the office. Never. Scared, I ran in and called out to him. He answered but, it was obvious that something was very wrong. His voice was weak, and he was incoherent. He insisted that I stay off the road and open the store for our local customers. He didn’t want me leaving town.

Later that day, my stepmother took him to the hospital. He was diagnosed with walking pneumonia and immediately admitted for observation. Little did we know he would be there for many weeks to come.

Once released, Dad was ordered to bed rest for at least 12 weeks. Instantly I went from being a 21-year-old, part-time college student to a full-time sales representative. To keep our business afloat, I took a leave of absence from school and worked 16-hour days. I worked from 2:00 AM straight through until dinner time when I would then visit Dad so he could sign the checks to pay our vendors.

I remember sitting at his bedside and asking him questions about how to reconcile our books in preparation to pay quarterly taxes. Meanwhile, sales had been cut by nearly 50%. In only 5 months, we were forced to start tapping into Dad’s IRA. In all, my father liquidated over $85,000 from his retirement accounts and fell behind with many of his vendors.

Hindsight is 20/20. I look back at this period of my life after becoming very familiar with the benefits of owning disability insurance. 

I think about how different life would be if we had done protection-based planning: By dedicating 1% of our company’s revenues to protecting my father’s income and covering our overhead expenses, how would this scenario have played out? Most likely, my family wouldn’t have experienced such financial hardship.

My personal story is my “Why”. It is the driving force behind every open talk I give to individuals, families, and business owners. It motivates me to ensure to the best of my ability that my clients are optimally protected. I cannot go back and rewrite my family history. I can do everything in my power to prevent it to happening to anyone else.

Would you like to learn more about how disability insurance can help protect your income?


Registered Representative and Financial Advisor of Park Avenue Securities LLC (PAS), 1040 BROAD STREET SUITE 202 SHREWSBURY, NJ 07702, ph# 848-456-3060. Securities products/services and advisory services are offered through PAS, a registered broker-dealer and investment advisor, 973-244-4420. Financial Representative, The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America (Guardian), New York, NY. PAS is an indirect, wholly owned subsidiary of Guardian. International Planning Alliance, LLC (IPA) is not an affiliate or subsidiary of PAS or Guardian. IPA is a General Agency of Guardian. PAS is a member FINRA, SIPC.

2021-119627 Exp. 04/2023