Are you covered if you can't work? EP #157 - Den Lennie


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In today’s shorty, Den shares how being insured is really important. Can you afford to not bring in any money for a year? Listen up and get a charge out of this episode.

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Episode Transcription

Den Lennie (2s):
Good day, guys! Den Lennie here host of the how to scale a video business podcast with this week's shorty. It was my birthday last week and I have a few days off, which was amazing. Saw some wonderful friends over the weekend. We went to a pottery class, had a lot of dinner and spent some days recovering, but I've just spent the last couple of hours on the phone to insurance companies to sign some income protection insurance and some other life insurance that I was looking to update. And it got me thinking about something I really want it to share with you today, which I think is really important.

Den Lennie (46s):
So, back in 2001, I had just gone freelance as a cameraman in London, have been staffed with the company called the London news network for about three years and decided to finally take the plunge and go freelance. And I'm one of the things that I have always had been shared is my gear, obviously I'd have my gear insured and it was a broker or in the UK called Alan Chapman James. And they were specialists in the video production broadcast industry. So, you know, getting new gear insured and things like that was really important. And I'm one of the things that they offered me at the time was income protection insurance.

Den Lennie (1m 31s):
And I kind of like, it was like, Oh my God, you are, I've got to pay all these insurances. But an actual fact, it turned out to be the best investment I ever made because I had this income protection insurance and I forget the details, but it cost me, I don't know how to be a couple of grand in a year, but it's in the event of an accident. It would pay out. I sat in the moment to cover a loss of income. So I took this policy out and six months later I was filming in Chamonix in my blog. I, with a friend of mine, Pat dial, we are going to do a documentary about a couple of guys, who are you going to Paris, the end of the summit of Montblanc.

Den Lennie (2m 19s):
And in a nutshell on day one, I slipped on a glacier while we were doing the ice training and broke my ankle and had to be airlifted off the mountain, which in itself was a pretty crazy experience. And being lynched off the ice with a cracked ankle. And, but it's napped it in two places and so straight into surgery and pins and plates, and the sheet was over there on the fly and all the camera man. And its got a long story short. I was repatriated back to the UK and I had six months off work.

Den Lennie (3m 2s):
And as a know, a freelance camera man who had just literally gone freelance who had just bought a house that was a bit of a challenging time to say the least I would have been completely screwed where it not for the fact that I had this income protection insurance. And I think it paid out something late and all 400 pounds a week or something. But obviously that was just just enough to cover some basic living costs each month. And I was told the grateful that I had it. In fact at the time I came out of the plaster and then I want to see my Sergeant and he said, so you that your legs are coming out of plastic and now you just got to kind of get on it and carry on.

Den Lennie (3m 48s):
But he said you can't work for another three months, four months. And so I actually said some words, is there any reason why I can get on a plane and go to Taiwan? And they said, well, this is plenty of reasons that could tell you not to go to Thailand, but the broken legs, not going to be one of them. So I actually have a backpack, kind of went to Thailand from a month and I lived a lot more cheaply, met a lot of cool people and hobbled the room with a WalkingStick. But the moral of the story is about two years later. So I came back and, and I recovered and I went back to work sort of six months later for the income protection insurance covered me. Cause I've kind of just bought a, bought a flight, you know? And so that covered the mortgage.

Den Lennie (4m 29s):
And then I went off too to Thailand from a month and then I came back and got back into work and it was fine. Then about 18 months later, I was filming in South Africa with Pat's again, actually, and Ben and that the Pinelli and we were doing the, the pilot for a place in the sun home in a way, which would've been in 2003, I think. And I was Jasmine harms was there and she was a presenter and actually ended up marrying a good friend of mine. John John took the cake over. So I basically offer this whole, this whole gig. So I, I did the pilot's in South Africa and I just wasn't for that Glade wasn't feeling quite right.

Den Lennie (5m 12s):
And so when I got home, I went to see a specialist and ankle specialist. He said, and what did you do for a living? And I said, well my camera man. And he said, well, not anymore. You're not, you've developed arthritis in your uncle. And I was like, why do you mean? And he was like, well, there's, Zem something called post traumatic arthritis when you break the board. And sometimes that can develop an arthritis, a look like an arthritis. And so I did that was it. My career was over. And at that point I was actually offered the entire summer season on a plane and this on a Hill away, it was like a six-month gig as a freelancer. So that was a six months traveling role in Spain. Couldn't do it. I'd have to turn it down. So I actually little side story, I actually, the, the band was asking me, you know, do you know anyone who could do it?

Den Lennie (5m 58s):
And I put forward John Boston, he was a friend of mine who ended up doing the gig and me and Jasmine and they get made and they have two kids. It was like kind of lovely, a lovely story. But the, the reason for sharing this with you was I, then wasn't able to walk again and the insurance peanut again, because I was unable to work through this accident. And ultimately, and they paid, I think it was like 12 or 13,000 lbs, total permanent disability of the right ankle in relation to being a camera man. So, you know, I still racked up a lot of debt, not being able to work for him. There's six months at this stage.

Den Lennie (6m 38s):
And that's the time of when I got a job at pro cam, but the moral of this story is that income protection insurance, 100% saved my bacon. And I we'd been in Australia now for six years and we've life-insurance in the UK, but we were moving all over kind of what you knew you were planning to stay in Australia, but it just about to buy a house. So I was just on the phone to insurance companies, sorting out some new life insurance and critical illness cover and all that sort of thing. And I realized they didn't have any income protection insurance. And so I just took some over it and it was actually less expensive than I realized. But what it does is this is if for some reason I get injured and I can perform my job.

Den Lennie (7m 21s):
It pays me out 85% of my salary and 'em and saw for a nominal amount each month, three, this is not a, not a huge amount. And it's tax deductible, I've taken this policy up and I was just really liked it, but I've never actually spoken about this to you, you guys. And so if you are a freelancer or you want a small video production business, where frankly, if you are out there, that would be a problem. Then I want you to go out and actually investigate sort of income protection insurance today because I realized that I didn't have any, and then we have been quite fortunate, quite a lot of savings and stuff, but we're dumping a lot of that in to the host. And this is going to leave us on a bit of a, a lighter position financially.

Den Lennie (8m 4s):
And then we would like to be, so I was taking this policy out and I'm, I guess I, I think about all of the things that you can spend money on in this industry on the amount of money that some people spend on Good. I mean, I spoke to someone recently who had spent 128,000 pounds on camera equipment and was charging 500 pounds a day. And it blew my mind that, that this was even possible. And yet these people wouldn't invest in themselves. And so I want you to, you know, to really think about what you spent in equipment this year or the last 12 months. And if you don't have any income protection insurance, please, please, please go out and get some to D and make sure it specific to doing the work that you do.

Den Lennie (8m 49s):
Some policies are, you know, if you can stuff envelopes, you can see that, that they'll then as long as you can do something for work, you know, they won't pay out, but am in the UK, Alan Chapman in James was a broker. I think there still is still around. And they did a very specific insurance cover for the Video industry. So make sure you get a broker who was going to help you with your specific industry, because if you break something, you physically can't go and pick up the camera or, or are you going to shoot? What would you do? What would your life look like? What would the world look like? So I want you to just, it's like a, kind of a public service announcement today. Cause as I was going to do this myself, I was, I've got to share this with you guys, because if you don't have it, please go on to organize it because I have been there and done that.

Den Lennie (9m 38s):
I broke my leg six months into my freelance career. I couldn't work for six months. It, it got worse, it went bad again to years later, they paid off again and it really saved my bacon. And so I want to just encourage you to make sure that you've got kind of cover in place so that you and your family are protected. 'cause, you know, it's, it's the worst possible thing that can happen. And, and, and I we're so dependent on, umm, you know, being able to pick a camera's up in a lot of cars and trucks and then go and shoes that unless you have a whole ton of savings, you know, could you, could you afford to not bring in any money for a year? And so just wanted to encourage you to do that because it's something that's really important.

Den Lennie (10m 21s):
And yeah, and I thought I'll share that with you today, guys. I will talk to you again on Thursday, You've been listening to the how to scale of video business podcast with your host, Den Lennie. If you are a Video business owner, it's hits a ceiling we've benefit from mentorship and support and coaching and checkout, how you can work with me over at Don't forget to subscribe and rate the short over on iTunes. We really appreciate you taking a few minutes to leave a review and don't forget to share if you feel you've gotten value from this episode and you think it would be useful for other filmmakers, you know, and please do me a massive favor and share it on social media and in groups that you might be in. So thanks for listening. See you in the next episode.




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