Points of interest

Could your household cope if someone was critically ill?

No one wants to be stuck leaving their family in a position where they are in a struggle, whether it’s financially or just due to the amount of things needing to be done. If you were to become critically ill how would your family cope, would your partner struggle looking after the house and any children you have? Would you be able to meet your financial commitments if there was a loss in income? If the answer to either of these questions is no then you need to do something about it before it is too late.

If your partner wouldn’t be able to cope with running the house or looking after your children if you were not at home then you should make sure that they are involved more so that they wouldn’t feel under as much pressure. It can often be difficult getting your partner more involved because of their working hours especially when mixed with your own but even if it’s one day a week. In just the same way you should also be aware of what they do around the home and how it is done just in case you ever need to do it, it is always better to be prepared.

If you and your partner both work then you could lose a large chunk of your income if one of you was to be diagnosed with a critical illness and need to be out of work for a long period of time. You don’t want to have to struggle financially at the same time as having extra things to do outside of work while caring for your partner and having to make visits to the hospital or anything else that is needed. You can help make sure that finances aren’t something to worry about by taking out individual critical illness policies for you and your partner, for a small monthly fee you don’t need to worry about what would happen if you or your partner was critically ill.

A critical illness policy allows you to receive a lump sum payout which can be used as you wish, many people use it to pay off their mortgage to help reduce their financial commitments, and this is a great way to use it if you’ve lost out on an income because you or your partner can’t work. It can also be used to pay for any special care or treatment required, if you are at work and your partner is at home you may want to hire a nurse to be at your home while you are working so your partner gets all the care that they need. You may want to pay for specialist treatment which isn’t available on the NHS or which has a long waiting list. Other people use their payout to fund a family holiday which can be enjoyed by all before the critical illness has taken too much of a hold and this means that there are recent happy memories to be remembered.

What is the difference between taking critical illness cover out on a mortgage basis or level basis? – Part 2

It can be said. that even if you were to be buying a new home and were buying it out right or with a mortgage you could still choose to take out the cover on a level basis so that the cover you take out would then stay the same for the duration of the contract. Critical illness cover can be adapted to suit your needs as you can choose how much you wish to be insured for, however this figure would have to be within the financial limits of your chosen insurance provider. Each insurance provider within the market has different underwriting limits and therefore will have different underwriting requirements depending on the level of cover.

If the chosen sum assured was relatively low then there would typically be no underwriting requirements needed apart from completing the application form, where as if you were to apply for a larger amount the insurance provider may request for you to attend a medical exam, complete a financial questionnaire or request a general practitioners report.

If you were to take out critical illness cover on a level basis and you needed to make a claim which was successful then you could use the money to pay off your mortgage and again if you took out the insurance on a decreasing basis you do not need to use the money to pay off your mortgage as once you receive the money it is yours to do with what you want.

Therefore the decision then becomes do you want your cover to decrease over the years or for the cover to stay the same, however this decision may become dependent on the cost of the insurance as you would typically find that it is more expensive to take out the insurance on a level (term) basis than what it would be when taking it out on a mortgage (decreasing) basis no matter how long the term of the contract.


What is the difference between taking critical illness cover out on a mortgage basis or level basis? – Part 1

No matter what insurance you may look at, whether it is critical illness cover, life insurance, critical illness cover including life insurance there are a few decisions that need to be decided upon.

If you are looking at insurance to cover the purchase of your new home, whether that be your first, or not you may need to decide on a new protection plan for this new purchase. If you are new to the industry and have not taken out such cover in the past then you want to ensure that you speak to an adviser who will help you through every stage of the application process. An adviser will be able to answer any questions you may have at any point from onset to completion of the application process.

Depending on how much money you want to spend on such insurance may determine what type of cover you may take out, however if buying a new home and you are looking for insurance to protect you for the amount you have borrowed then you would normally consider critical illness cover on a decreasing basis. The word decreasing means that the level of cover which would be the amount borrowed and maybe even including any outstanding loans perhaps would reduce every year throughout the term of the contract.

The amount it would decrease by would typically always cover the amount you would then owe on your mortgage if you were to use the money to pay off your mortgage in the event of suffering an illness which would leave you critically ill. When looking at an insurance plan on a decreasing basis then within the quote illustration given to you by the adviser you would see each year how much you would still be covered for. You would also be able to contact your insurance provider at any point in time and ask for a figure as to how much you are covered for at that moment in time.

It is advisable to take out your protection plans at a younger age.

This is because as we age insurance companies generally increase their premiums which are reflected when you are provided with a quotation from the insurance company. They associate age with a higher risk of developing critical illnesses and the increased chance that you may become seriously ill. It is also recommended that you should ideally if you can afford to do it, take out two separate policies.

If they were a combined plan then in the event of a claim upon the death side it will pay out and then cease, where as if they were separate the life plan would cancel and the critical illness pay out upon diagnosis of an ailment. By splitting the policies up you can effectively increase the chances of a claim on both policies, meaning more entitlements should you be diagnosed with a critical illness or upon the death of the insured person.

There are more conditions being diagnosed and developed every single day, however because treatment has become more advanced illnesses can often be treated and a higher number of cases are recovering. This is all dependant upon the severity of the illness that they have suffered and the general prognosis of the future of the individual.

If you ever needed to make a claim on your insurance policy then you should ensure that you have fully read and understood the terms and conditions of the policy, just to make sure that you are aware of where you stand in relation to making a claim. The money upon the payout of a claim can be used for however you feel necessary.

Make sure you have the right critical illness insurance policy in force.

There are so many different insurance providers on the market out there, that deciding upon whom to insure with can be a very difficult decision. You should take a lot of different aspects into consideration before you buy this type of cover. You should ensure that you are aware of the cover that you are buying and make sure that you are happy with the illnesses covered and listed by the provider. It is crucial that you do not just jump in and buy the cheapest available policy on the day you start looking for critical illness insurance policy.

If you didn’t have this type of insurance in force, how would you and your family be able to survive if you were unable to return to work and earn a wage. No matter how much you cut back on spending upon diagnosis of an illness, it is unlikely that you can get your hands on a cash lump sum like you can do with a critical illness insurance policy. Despite this aspect there are still over fifty five percent of people in the United Kingdom who do not have a form of critical illness insurance in force. Many people often tend to associate a critical illness with some one of a pensioner age or generally of a mature age. This is not the case. Anyone of any age, can be diagnosed and suffer with a critical illness.

Statistics confirm that lung cancer is the biggest form of cancer present and has a one in four chance of being developed at some stage in an individual’s life; it also kills approximately thirty five thousand. Approximately 20 percent of all men smoke and 20 percent of all women smoke. With a critical illness there is in this day and age a greater chance that if you did suffer from an illness that you have a much higher chance of surviving the illness and getting better, however without a critical illness insurance plan in force, you are still left with the worries of who would pay for the existing commitments that are already in force.

How will my build affect my critical illness insurance application – Part A

If you are classed as medically underweight or overweight or even if you think you are, then it may affect the outcome of a critical illness insurance application, life plan or even and income protection policy. Each and every insurance provider has their own limits as to what they class as being both overweight and underweight and this unfortunately can be variable dependant on the provider you choose. The decision about the weight ratio of an applicant is made upon the actual weight of the individual rather than just a guess. Generally they need to know the exact recent weight along with your height.

When applying for critical illness insurance it is a good idea to monitor your weight whilst you application is in process. This means that if you are currently loosing weight you can give an accurate disclosure at the time when you are applying. There are a few other aspects that can determine the price on the application you are applying for, these can be whether or not the applicant smokes or drinks excessively or not. These will be taken into consideration with your height and weight ratio. If you are classed as overweight by the insurance provider and you also smoke there may be an addition or price increase (rating) to go on top.

In some cases dependant upon the applicant’s weight and height the insurance provider can request an applicant to undergo a medical examination, various tests such as blood and urine, a telephone interview and possibly information from the applicant’s doctor. In some cases if the insurance provider classify the applicant as being underweight or grossly overweight then they can decline the application altogether. Typically the premium is increased for acceptable applicants that are not classed as too overweight or too underweight. This is done according to their height and weight ratio. This in insurance terms is called a rating or a loading on the policy premium and an insurance company can apply this increase as and when they feel necessary prior to a policy going on risk.

How will my build affect my critical illness insurance application – Part A

For many people there is a lack of knowledge about just how your weight and build can affect your life. Being both overweight and underweight can have dramatic and lasting affect on your body. It essentially makes all of your vital organs within your body work overtime. By being overweight you increase the chances of heart attacks, raised cholesterol, diabetes, and raised blood pressure, strokes and other potentially fatal conditions which at any point can take your life. By being underweight you are effectively starving and depriving your body of the essential nutrients and goodness that it needs which means it can not function properly.

Many insurance providers of critical illness insurance base individual applicants weight upon their BMI – Body Mass Index. This is a comparison of the weight and height ratio of an individual insurance companies rate both males and females separately obviously because the two sexes are made up of very different builds. They calculate the BMI of an individual by taking their height in meters (m2) and their most recent weight in kilograms (kg). They get their figure by dividing the weight of the applicant by the square of their height.

This ultimately creates the desired and needed BMI weight. In some cases an insurance provider of this type of insurance may require the individual to weigh themselves prior to the application, a few providers request the last day that the individual weighed themselves as well. This can of course change between the time they looked for cover and the time that they actually took the cover out. It may be advisable to update the insurance provider on the recent weight loss or gain so they can amend their terms sooner rather than later. The insurance provider will take into consideration the height and weight of the individual along with their dress or waist size as well.

Look towards the new year with critical illness cover.

The New Year will soon be upon us and along with making resolutions it is a great time for choosing to protect yourself, whether that is by ensuring you have working smoke detectors or purchasing a new insurance policy.

Now is the perfect time to think about protecting yourself, the New year is about looking ahead but if you were to fall ill how much of
what you had planned would you be able to accomplish? You will be able to accomplish even less if you were to lose out on your income and so you may find it very beneficial to take out a critical illness policy. If you fall ill there is no doubt that it will cause you a lot of worry especially if you were to end up out of work however if you have a critical illness policy you will not to worry as much as you will be able to receive a one off lump sum payout when you claim on your policy.

Becoming critically ill is always going to be devastating for both you and your family and so lessen some of the worry it may bring by taking out a critical illness policy. Critical illness insurance companies know that being diagnosed with a critical illness is a horrible experience and so do their very best to make claiming on your policy as easy as possible, giving you one less thing to worry about. When you are ill you want to be able to focus on your recovery and not be worrying about your finances.

The payout from your critical insurance can be an enormous help, as becoming ill normally happens when you have more than enough on your plate already, you can choose to spend your payout as you wish whether that is paying off your mortgage so you have one less monthly out going, paying for any care you may need at home, adapting your home for your new illness, or you may just choose to spend it enjoying yourself while you still can, if there is anything you have ever dreamt of doing this payout could help you achieve that, whether it’s flying over the Grand Canyon or driving a Ferrari.

Critical illness insurance covers many different illnesses.

Critical illness insurance covers a wide array of different illnesses, however not every policy covers the same illnesses and they don’t all cover the same amount of illnesses. It is essential that you ensure that you are covered for any illnesses that you are particularly worried about getting, and the only way to do that is to speak to someone over the phone. The original critical illness policy only covered you for four different illnesses; the insurance policies today can cover you for over a hundred different illnesses. The original illnesses covered were cancer, coronary artery by-pass surgery, heart attack and stroke. Since the original policy was created many illnesses have been added to policies while others have been removed because medicine has improved making some illness that may have once been classed as critical no longer critical as it can be easily treated with medication. In the years to come the illnesses covered currently by a critical illness policy will change because medicine is continually evolving and improving.

It will be very beneficial to take out a critical illness policy because although you may not feel as though you will become critically ill you never know when it is going to happen to you or if it is going to happen to you, but if you have protection in place you will not need to worry about what you are going to do. A critical illness policy gives you one lump sum payout, the payout from your insurance policy is yours to do with as you wish, whether that is paying for medical care, making improvements to your home or choosing to spend it on enjoying time with your family. Some people may choose to use the payout they receive to maintain their financial commitments if they have suffered a loss in income due to being out of work.

Make sure you protect yourself this Christmas.

How would you feel if you were to become critically ill over Christmas? There is no doubt that you would be absolutely devastated. Families the world over  spend a great deal of time looking forward to Christmas and preparing for it and so being ill could really ruin the occasion for a family, if you are ill then your family will be busy worrying about you and won’t take the time to enjoy their Christmas.

If you were to have become earlier in the year and be out of work due to the treatment you need for your illness Christmas could become a difficult time for you as you may not have the energy to fully enjoy your time with your family. If you have been out of work it could make it difficult for you to afford your usual Christmas affairs and this could have even more of an effect on you if you have a young family who still believe in Santa as they will expect the same kind of Christmas they have always had.

If you have a critical illness policy in place then it will ease some of the worry that comes with being critically ill, you will not need to worry as much about your finances this is because you will receive a payout from your insurance policy which you can use to cover your financial commitments. This payout could help you cover your Christmas costs so that your family do not need to miss out, you can also use it to pay for any treatment that you require. Once you receive your payout you can use it however it will best suit you.