Recent research conducted by Irish Insurers highlighted once again the belief among Irish consumers that “it will never happen to me” when it comes to their protection needs.

The research showed 74% of Irish people, who have no life or critical illness insurance, believe that they are less likely to die or be affected by a serious illness than those with cover. 63% of them believed that suffering from a serious illness would not prevent them from working for six months or more.

More people have mobile phone insurance than life insurance. Of the people with no insurance at all, 16% said they were too young; 12% said they hadn’t got round to buying it yet and 9% said they were happy to take a gamble.

The conclusion of the research is the Irish public tends to place quite a low priority on their financial protection, yet all the evidence shows that if and when something nasty happens, it severely damages people’s finances.

It is very easy to think “it won’t happen to me” but people are often shaken out of their lethargy when something does happen to somebody they know, like a relative or even a television soap star.

The insurance industry plays its role by promoting products to the public through advertising. Much of the advertising conducted by Insurers is focussed on trying to scare people into purchasing a policy and it is obviously not working. In terms of changing people’s attitudes to the need for insurance, there needs to be much more focus on consumer education. Financial Brokers assist consumers by demonstrating the very clear need for financial protection; by calculating the amount of protection required and the most appropriate product to purchase, based on each individual’s circumstances.

Paul Auster, the best selling US author said “You think it will never happen to you; that it cannot happen to you; that you are the only person in the world to whom none of these things will ever happen, and then, one by one, they all begin to happen to you, in the same way they happen to everyone else”