Your Stories

Leilani and Richard's story

Leilani and Richard were a typical hard working couple.  They were in their 50s, enjoying life together and working hard to get their mortgage paid off.  They knew they still had a number of years before retirement, so becoming mortgage free was well within their grasp, but they both needed to work to achieve it.

With three grown up children, a daughter-in-law and young granddaughter to enjoy, life was good, made even better with a trip to Rarotonga on the near horizon.

“Our premiums had just gone up so I suggested to Richard that we cut back our cover. With the kids grown up, we didn’t think we needed $350,000 life cover each – we were confident that $100,000 would do it, and would certainly be more affordable,” shares Leilani.

Their financial adviser, Alan Leuluai of Leuluai Financial, went away and compiled some options that kept their cover, but reduced their life insurance to $100,000 each, plus a few additional changes to improve affordability.

Richard and Leilani were both frantic at work, so when Alan rang to arrange a meeting time to sign the new documentation, Leilani said she’d be back in contact in a fortnight or so, when life had settled down.  But unfortunately life was about to take a tragic twist for the hardworking Mangere Bridge couple.

The following week, Richard was diagnosed terminally ill with Hepatocellular Carcinoma (liver cancer). He had been feeling tired and lethargic, but both Leilani and Richard had put it down to their busy lives.

Sadly Richard’s illness was advanced at the stage of diagnosis, and he was soon off work permanently.

Fidelity Life moved quickly to help the family. Richard’s life insurance policy was settled, allowing the mortgage to be paid off on the family home.

“We really can’t believe how fantastic Fidelity Life has been.  The service has been amazing – with so much stress and pressure around us, this has meant everything to us.  It’s just one thing we haven’t had to worry about,” adds Leilani.

Faced now with the reality of what not being able to work really means in terms of living costs and the mortgage, Leilani and Richard say they could never have anticipated the true impact.  Leilani is now caring for her husband full time at home, without the additional worry of how to meet mortgage repayments or day to day costs.

“I can’t even imagine how we could have coped, and can’t imagine how others cope without insurance cover.   I have no doubt we would have had to sell our home and downsize.”

And for a husband and father who has always put his family first, Leilani says the help from Fidelity Life has given her husband great strength.

“This financial outcome has given Richard peace and he doesn’t have to worry about us. His main aim is to make sure we’re looked after, and now that’s taken care of.”

The most important thing for the family now is time, and Fidelity Life’s support has ensured every moment together is extra special.

“My children are staying here with us - we can be together and spend quality time with each other. It’s a tragic time, but Fidelity Life has removed the worry and stress, letting us enjoy this precious time together. They really have been amazing.”

*This is a real life claim but names and personal information have been changed to protect privacy.