Can I get life insurance in the UK if I have a critical illness?
Heart attacks, strokes and other critical illnesses affect as many as 20% of men and 15% of women in the UK before they reach retirement age. Such unexpected and unforeseeable medical problems – even late diagnoses of longer-term problems – can often be difficult to plan for.
In addition to the emotional strain of serious health problems, the financial aspects of serious illnesses can be difficult to deal with. The costs of home help or childcare, additional treatment or making accessibility alterations, all need to be taken into account when choosing the insurance policy that offers the best level of cover for your family.
Planning for the future
Securing yourself against future problems always requires foresight and planning. Life and critical illness cover is no different. It’s wise to act sooner rather than later as it can be difficult to obtain an insurance policy after you’ve already been diagnosed as critically ill. Insurance providers will take into account the stage of your illness (as classified by hospitals) and treatment plan – but unfortunately, even if your prognosis is healthy, it’s unlikely that you will be granted cover.
On top of this, insurance premiums for life insurance with critical illness cover are on the increase, owing to both a rise in the number of claims made and advances in medical science. The necessary medical checks that an insurance company requires will usually take a few months, so acting quickly can actually make a big difference.
Finding the policy for you
It’s crucial that you select the provider of your life and critical illness cover very carefully, as there can be some disparity between policies in the industry. According to the Association of British Insurers, there are more than 60 providers offering variations and combinations of both life and critical illness cover, demonstrating the challenge that consumers face.
Apart from setting the length of coverage that you want, there is now a range of more than 30 illnesses that you can potentially find cover for. With this in mind, it’s important not to simply opt for the cheapest quote, as this may be very limited in its scope, or the most extensive plan, which can include less common illnesses and allows insurers to charge high premiums. Instead, it’s best to search for a policy that best meets your individual needs.
Help for the future
Payments can be used at your family’s discretion – to pay off the mortgage or existing debts, to finance additional care or simply to mitigate the possible loss of income. Perhaps most importantly, the financial security it provides allows you and your family to spend time together, without unnecessary stress, to come to terms with your illness and make plans for the future.
Of course, these crucial choices are best made before health issues arise – and making informed decisions about your health and life insurance policies will help to bring you a sense of security and reassurance for the future. TotallyMoney makes it easy to get peace of mind and learn more about your cover options when you shop for life insurance.