Is it worth getting critical illness cover?
27 Apr 2020
Another life insurance product? Really? Yes, really. Critical illness cover is one of the lesser talked about insurance products, but it’s a really important one. In some cases, you might not need critical illness but for most people with a family or financial commitments, it’s definitely worth having it to fall back on.
Surely you’re far more likely to become ill or injured before you turn 65 than you are to pass away before then? How would you and your family cope financially if that was to happen? If that doesn’t highlight the importance of critical illness cover, then we don’t know what will!
What is critical illness cover?
Critical illness cover pays out a lump sum when you’re diagnosed with an eligible serious long-term illness or injury. It gives you a financial safety net to cover your regular outgoings such as your mortgage, rent or debt payments, any healthcare or specialist equipment you might find yourself in need of.
When you take out critical illness cover, you decide how long your policy lasts for. Most commonly, people will opt for their cover to last until their children decide to leave home and stand on their own two feet, or perhaps until the mortgage has been paid off. Providing for your family and keeping on top of mortgage repayments are likely to be the two biggest financial commitments to worry about when times get hard.
Do I actually need critical illness cover?
No one needs critical illness cover - but it is very wise to have it under your belt. There may be cases where it becomes a little pointless though. For instance, perhaps you’re lucky enough to have a partner who can cover living costs for the two of you and any shared commitments whilst you recover. Or you may have ample savings sat in a bank account that you could dip into to cover your outgoings - but even then, this might not be a suitable long-term solution. Plus, you might need these savings to help you out in emergency situations, such as your car breaking down or a faulty boiler.
And before you think about taking out critical illness cover, be sure to check with your employer that they don’t have anything in place in terms of employee benefits before you consider critical illness cover. Statutory Sick Pay is often provided by employers, at a standard rate of £94.25 a week for up to 28 weeks. Although this might sound great, it’s important to note that you need to meet a certain criteria to qualify for this, and it may not realistically be enough to meet your needs.
Although it is of course wonderful news that medical advancements are keeping us all alive for longer, it does mean that we’re all a little more at risk of getting seriously ill or injured. With a family that relies on your income and financial commitments to meet, being out of work can be a real blow.
Are there any exclusions?
Be sure to check the small print with your critical illness policy because not all illnesses and conditions are actually covered in any one given policy. Long-term and serious conditions are usually the only things covered, such as a heart attack, stroke, cancer, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease or the loss of arms or legs - but this does differ between providers. Sometimes some types of cancer and/or minor heart attacks won’t be covered and a condition may have to reach a certain level of seriousness before you can claim.
A critical illness policy also will not pay out in the event of death - you’ll want life insurance for that. You can combine critical illness with a life insurance policy though, so you have all bases covered.
Getting seriously ill or injured probably isn’t something that many of us fixate on day-to-day. None of us are invincible though, so you’d be a fool to ignore the possibility of it. Money might not be able to buy you happiness, but it can definitely help you and your family with one less thing to worry about. With that in mind, critical illness cover will always be worth it.
Ready to get yourself covered? Give us a call at LifeSearch on 0800 316 7253 and one of our friendly, helpful team members will be on the other end of the phone to take you through the process.
Is income protection the same as PPI?
12 Oct 2021