Life is constantly changing and fragile, even at the best of times. People live knowing that it can change in an instant. Being diagnosed with a critical illness can change the life of an entire family in the blink of an eye.
In life or death situations, financial insecurities add stress to the trauma of the diagnosis. Insurance is there to help provide for people in case the worst case scenario becomes a reality.
Critical Illness Cover
Critical illness cover provides a financial payout when a critical illness that is covered by the plan is diagnosed. This lump sum payout can be used in any way that the recipient deems fit. People diagnosed with critical illnesses often have to pay large amounts of money for medical care and treatment. Bills can quickly pile up from physicians, hospitals, treatment centers, prescription medications and a huge range of health care providers. Critical illness cover can be used to pay for these needs and anything else that arises during the stressful time after being diagnosed. There are no restrictions on how the lump sum payment may be used.
Insurance Policy Coverage
This critical illness coverage can be part of another insurance policy, such as life insurance or mortgage insurance. It can also be purchased separately as an independent insurance policy. Always check with individual insurance companies to see whether critical illness cover should be added to an existing policy or whether a separate policy is the best solution. A cost/benefit analysis should be done before committing to one solution over the other. There is often also the option of having joint spousal coverage, although there can be issues if both people were diagnosed with a critical illness. It is important to understand the terms of any insurance policy before purchasing it.
Illnesses that are Covered
The specific list of conditions included in critical illness cover vary from policy to policy but often include:
• Kidney failure
• Benign brain tumors
• Loss of limbs
• Progressive muscular atrophy
• End stage lung disease
• Some forms of cancer
• Heart attack
• Organ transplant
• Alzheimer’s disease
• Heart valve surgery
• Multiple sclerosis
• Major burns
Refer to the insurance company holding the policy for a specific list of conditions and diseases covered by their critical illness cover.
Exceptions to Coverage
Many insurance companies have a list of exceptions to critical illness cover. This means that the insurance company will not pay out a lump sum to the insured person under certain circumstances including conditions caused by:
• Drug Abuse
• Refusal or failure to follow sound medical advice from a doctor
• Criminal or illegal activities
• Parkinson’s disease
• Alzheimer’s disease diagnosed after the age of 60
This list will also vary from policy to policy making it essential to check with the individual insurance company holding the policy for a specific list of exceptions to critical illness cover.
Benefits of Critical Illness Cover
Receiving a critical illness diagnosis for yourself or a loved one is an extremely stressful, panic inducing experience. Having critical illness cover with an insurance company can ease some of the worry because part of the financial worries will be eased. People with critical illnesses may not be able to work for a time or perhaps, never again. There may be mounting costs of equipment needed, medications to buy and even alterations necessary to the home for comfortable living. Those who have insurance coverage will have less of a burden providing for these necessities and may even have enough money for more convenient treatments such as home care.
Critical Illness Cover Eligibility
This type of insurance policy is generally available to people between the ages of 17 and 65. The minimum and maximum age range will vary from company to company so it may be a good idea to look around if a person is near the age boundaries. Some insurance companies have even started offering this coverage to children. The cost of a child’s coverage may be very small making purchasing coverage extremely cost effective.
Costs of Critical Illness Cover
The costs associated with critical illness cover vary widely from person to person and from policy to policy. However, like any other type of insurance product, there are a number of factors that go into determining an individual’s cost for coverage including:
• Amount of coverage purchased – how large the lump sum payment is in case of diagnosis
• Age of the person insured
• Medical history
• Occupation – some occupations are deemed to be “more risky” than others although this is somewhat less applicable with critical illness coverage than with life insurance
• Hobbies and interests
• Smoking status
• General health – this may include results of a medical exam depending on the insurance company providing the critical illness cover
• Medical records
Generally speaking, the more risky a person is determined to be, the higher their insurance policy premiums will be. Insurance providers may deny coverage to individuals who they deem to be “too risky.”
Types of Premium Policies
Critical illness cover has two basic types of premiums: guaranteed premium policies or reviewable premium policies.
Guaranteed premium policies: provide a guaranteed premium rate for the entire length of the policy. This may prove to be more expensive in the beginning but it evens out over time.
Reviewable premium policies: have a premium amount that is up for review after a set period of time (usually five years). After the time period is up, the individual’s premium payment is reviewed. This will determine whether or not the premium amount should rise. Alternatively, this may prove to be less expensive in the beginning and increase in amount over time.
Some policies for critical illness insurance will have a set amount of waiting period before payout is given to the insured person after diagnosis. The waiting period usually lasts between 14 and 28 days, and must be survived by the diagnosed person. This means that in order to receive the payout dictated by the critical illness policy, the person must survive a set amount of time after being diagnosed in order to qualify for coverage.
Critical Illness Cover Quotes
It is now both easy and convenient to get a number of life insurance quotes from top notch UK insurance companies providing critical illness cover. Our online form is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and has expert employees standing by to provide quotes for the coverage desired.
It can be hard to think about the worst case scenarios in everyday life. However, it is important to plan for these occasions properly so that if they do arise, it is possible to get the help needed. Critical illness cover can help to prepare for the costs associated with being diagnosed with a range of illnesses and conditions.