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Santa's Protection Prospects
3 Dec 2019
Ho Ho Ho! Santa's Protection Prospects.
As we prepare to turn the corner into the annual hassle-cade that is Christmas, one question has been on everyone's lips.
We've all asked at some point; it's a conundrum that's dominated newspaper headlines for the last 673 years. So let's finally put it to rest …
Would Santa Claus get life insurance?On the face of it, jolly old St. Nick looks like a protection longshot. Depending on which iteration we go with, his next-of-kin is a soft drinks company (meaning his blood is fizzy and black) or he was somehow birthed by a man called Washington (making him a legit medical marvel).
He might have been born in Turkey 1700 years ago. Or maybe he's younger and much more Dutch. Whatever the case, it'll be tough to get a robust family medical history.
Santa works in manufacturing, anyone who knows anything about anything knows that to be scientific fact.
As the biggest employer in all of Finland, his empire may be one of those too big to fail numbers - thus he's underwritten by the country's government.
We called Finland's Department of Trade and Industry to clarify but were asked to cease and desist on the grounds of international secrecy. Only kidding, we're still on hold.
Alas, we can but guess. And as owner and CEO of an immense industrial operation – with a workforce of thousands (inc. animals) – you've got to wonder what'd happen if the big man was suddenly struck down by illness or injury.
Has he the kind of tiered and efficient corporate structure that could see business-as-usual resume if he was laid up? Can the elves really be trusted to run the ship while Captain Beardy's on his back?
Sounds like Critical Illness Cover or Key Man Cover would be a logical purchase for Customer Claus.
Caveat: the premiums might be a tad expensive and even if Key Man Cover was an option, Santa's P&L sheet has to be a car crash. His numbers haven't been made public, but a century of evidence suggests his customers pay for goods with pretty paper and fluffy wishes. Neither have the same value as legal tender.
Exactly how much business protection Santa would be eligible for may be a moot point. With no cash in the coffers one has to imagine that his workers are essentially slaves and would capitalise on St Nick sickness by finishing the job and running across the tundra to sweet, sweet freedom.
The Santa Over 50s Plan
Santa's been at it for a while, some estimates put his age at nearly 2,000 years old - others a sprightly 103.
This may rule him out for the majority of protection products but he's got an outside chance of snaring a Guaranteed Over 50s policy. Perhaps that's a viable route if the old boy wants to provide a payout upon his demise to cover costs and funeral expenses.
Then again, this could all be silly and academic. We have to imagine that Santa Inc. is proficient in the construction of large wooden (shipping) containers thus fashioning a fine coffin is at most a morning's work.
Certain protection policies may be open to Krispy Kringle, but life insurance mightn't be one of them. For starters, Santa's BMI ain't great. He's been cutting about with a gut for several decades now.
We have to imagine that if Mr Claus was going to go Atkins or try the urine-cleanse diet he'd have done it by now. So yes, the weight factor is liable to impact his premiums.
Also, when Santa's been papped by the British tabloids his nose resembles that of a seasoned drinker, so we might have to raise a flag around the man's alcohol consumption.
Then there's the international travel factor. Many of us travel a lot and it doesn't affect our premiums. But those of us who are frequent flyers (guilt about our carbon footprint aside) have the good sense to do so in, like, proper aeroplanes with pilots and sandwiches.
And while that's not foolproof, it's got to be better than traipsing the skies in a wooden tray powered by reindeer farts. Unless depictions of Santa's vessel have been grossly understated, there's neither an in-flight safety demonstration prior to take-off, nor a light and a whistle for attracting attention.
Chances up in smoke?
When Kris isn't breezing through different timezones, powered by mammal flatulence and neat vodka, he's creeping in and out of chimneys in less-than-agreeable conditions.
Dragging a hefty waistline through tight, sooty shafts feels a) like a weird euphemism and b) like a fastrack to injury, pushing Santa's liabilities even further north.
However, let's say insurers had the foresight to treat Santa A.T. Claus as a special case. They can discount the weight issue: his belly's a century old and he hasn't yet – as far as we know – fallen victim to any of the big three critical illnesses.
And in 100-odd years, even in the Air Traffic Control era, we've yet to hear reports of mid-air-collisions; plane-on-reindeer. That's another big tick. We know of only one instance, immortalised in song form, where Santa got stuck in the chimney (achoo achoo achoo).
Risk rating …?
Santa Archibald McTavish Claus (BA Hons) is a complex and contradictory character. Most probably bankrupted some years ago, he defies the laws of gravity and death. If he is indeed immortal, he doesn't need to investigate an Over 50s Plan.
If not, all things considered he's not an ideal candidate.
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