Discussing death and disability hardly ranks as a favorite activity for most people. But failure to plan adequately for the financial consequences involved could mean unneccesary hardship for your loved ones and you.

Risk management should form the basis of any financial plan, according to Clark Randall, a certified financial planner and founder and owner of Dallas-based Financial Enlightenment.

“It’s the first thing you should look at before investing—it’s critical,” Randall said.

The easiest and most cost-effective way for most people to mitigate these risks is through insurance products, such as disability, life and long-term-care insurance.

That may be common knowledge, but discomfort with the subjects and the complexity of insurance products prevent many people from obtaining necessary coverage in advance of a life-changing event, according to experts. 

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