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Poor Health Primary Cause of Early Retirement

By Andrew Rickard | November 11 2014 07:16AM

A recent study conducted for Sun Life Financial reveals that poor health is the main reason most Canadians are not able to keep working as long as they had planned.

According to the results of an Ipsos Reid survey conducted for Sun Life, 69% of Canadians did not leave work on the date they had planned to do so, and 41% of these people cited personal health as the primary reason they were required to retire earlier. In addition, 45% of respondents said they had experienced some kind of "health event" and 23% were affected by mental health issues.

Although 66% of those surveyed said they were seriously concerned about deteriorating health as they age, only 22% indicated they had saved money or otherwise planned for healthcare expenses in retirement. The survey also showed that 53% of Canadians are worried about the cost of drugs and medical treatments in retirement, 47% are anxious about being in long-term care longer than they can afford, and 45% are afraid they may outlive their retirement savings.

"Our research shows that Canadians who are not financially prepared to retire typically say they will work longer to compensate, but unfortunately, they may not have that choice," comments Sun Life president Kevin Dougherty. "Simply working longer to make ends meet may not be possible after serious health events force many Canadians to leave the workforce, triggering a surprise retirement date."

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