Are you an NP? Consider These 5 Things When Creating Your Financial Plan
Nurse Practitioners spend their lives caring for others, but that doesn’t mean their own financial well-being should be left on the back-burner. From the moment a nurse practitioner earns his or her degree to the day they hang up their stethoscope for good, advanced nurses face unique financial hurdles, dilemmas and questions. Here are five key components every nurse practitioner should consider when putting together their financial plan.
#1: Student Loan Debt
Carrying more than three times the student loan debt as the average college graduate, nurse practitioners are starting their careers with a significant financial burden. That’s why for most advanced nurses, paying down student loan debt is a top priority for the first five, 10, 15+ years of their career.
If you’re still working to pay down debt, this needs to continue to be a priority as you work with your financial advisor. Student loan debt that is not paid down in a timely and strategic manner can wreak havoc on your credit score, savings goals, home buying dreams and retirement planning.
#2: Disability Insurance
For many nurse practitioners, establishing their own practice is a big goal. But pouring your resources and time into a private practice can leave you with little left in the way of savings - making disability insurance crucial for nurse practitioners.
For newer NPs, their high-earning years are still ahead of them. Should they lose the ability to work now, they’re facing an uphill battle with debt to pay down and a loss of income. Disability insurance can help nurse practitioners protect themselves financially from this worst-case scenario.
#3: Robust Estate Plan
Your career is demanding, but that doesn’t mean you can neglect preparing a plan to protect your future legacy. From determining what will happen to your private practice after your passing to ensuring your spouse and children are well-taken care of, a robust and well-defined estate plan is a critical part of the overall financial plan.
#4: Malpractice Insurance
According to the Nurse Practitioner Claim Report, the average cost for a nurse practitioner to defend against a medical malpractice lawsuit is $60,034. That number jumps up to $300,505 if you lose the case and are forced to pay settlement.1
Let's face it, you’re working in a high-stakes field, meaning a less-than-desirable outcome could incite legal action by a disgruntled patient or their family.
Often times, employer-provided coverage does not cover license complaints and more that half of the claims exceed $100,000.1 Therefore, having malpractice insurance can help reduce or eliminate this risk on your finances.
#5: A Well-Suited Financial Advisor
You know better than anyone that your financials are unique - and your needs can differ greatly from those of friends and family who work outside of the healthcare industry. As a result, your financial plan deserves the dedication of a financial advisor who specifically works with and knows how to help medical professionals.
An advisor who is able to accommodate your busy (and often erratic) schedule, address your student loan debt, assess your risk coverage options and help prepare a legacy for your family. Additionally, you may want to work with someone who can help you establish a practice and transfer it to new ownership when you’re ready to retire. Finding a well-suited financial advisor can be one of the most impactful decisions you make regarding your financial plan.
As a healthcare professional, it’s important to know you have a thorough and encompassing financial plan that addresses all of your financial concerns. Pay special attention to these five components to help make the planning process productive and well-rounded.
- Nurse Practitioner Claim Report: 4th Edition, A Guide to Identifying and Addressing Professional Liability Exposures, OCT 2015
This content is developed from sources believed to be providing accurate information, and provided by My NP Advisor. It may not be used for the purpose of avoiding any federal tax penalties. Please consult legal or tax professionals for specific information regarding your individual situation. The opinions expressed and material provided are for general information, and should not be considered a solicitation for the purchase or sale of any security.