The Covid-19 pandemic has refocused all of us on the importance of health. But one-off events like Coronavirus are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to our nation’s well-being. When you consider that half of the population will be touched in some way by cancer during their lifetime and that dementia and heart disease are on the rise, it’s no surprise that we put our health at the top of our priority list.
If you run your own business, a critical illness could have more than just a physical effect. It could interrupt your income and leave your family worried about paying the bills when they should be focused on caring for you. The financial aspect of ill health can impact your recovery, your future, and the future of your loved ones.
Life insurance and critical illness cover – what are the differences?
There is a way to give yourself a little extra protection in these uncertain times. Life insurance and critical illness cover provide you with a financial cushion for you and your loved ones should you be diagnosed with a serious or life-threatening illness. However, there are differences between the two:
- Critical Illness cover – It will provide you with financial support once you’ve been diagnosed with a critical illness. It includes diseases that, while they may be severe enough to stop you from working or leading a normal life, may also be recoverable. The types of illness covered by a critical illness insurance policy will depend on the insurance provider. They could include conditions such as heart disease or a heart attack, strokes, and most types of cancer. The money would be paid to the policyholder.
- Life insurance – It will provide financial support to your loved ones, or your business, on your death. Most life insurance policies come with a terminal illness benefit. It allows you to make an early claim if you are diagnosed with an illness that is life threatening and where you are expected to die within 12 months. The terminal illness benefit would normally be paid to the policyholder. The death benefit would normally be paid to the policyholder (if a business), the policyholder’s estate, or if in trust the money would be paid out to a beneficiary after the policyholder’s death.
Both types of cover will normally pay out a one-time, tax-free lump sum. There are no restrictions on what the money can be used for once paid. Your family could use a life insurance payout to pay off a mortgage or bills, while a critical illness payout could be put towards your rehabilitation or long-term care.
Are all illnesses covered in a critical illness policy?
No, they are not, but you can pay more to have more illnesses covered. You will need to check your policy if you already have cover or the small print if you are taking out cover. The biggest three reasons to claim on a critical illness policy are cancer, heart attack and stroke. It’s worth shopping around to find a policy that includes the illnesses that are important to you.
Combining the two – double the protection
Life insurance policies and critical illness cover are usually quite affordable. (Do bear in mind that once you take out a life insurance policy, you will need to keep paying the premiums to ensure your beneficiaries are awarded a payout after your death).
Our top tip is to think about combining the two. Critical illness cover will provide you with the financial support you need while you are still alive. If your condition becomes terminal or you die of an unrelated cause, life insurance will give you and your loved ones a secure financial future. As critical illness cover costs more than life insurance, remember you don’t have to have the same level of cover for each.
TH March – your insurance providers
At TH March, we believe that the right insurance can make a huge difference to you and your family, and we’ve been looking after customers for over 135 years. We offer:
- Life Insurance
- Critical illness insurance
- Mortgage protection
- Family income benefit
- Income protection insurance
We want to protect and enrich the lives of our customers, employees, partners and business communities with insurance that focuses on the practicalities of life. As a chartered insurance provider approved by the Chartered Insurance Institute, you can trust that the advice we give you is transparent, jargon-free, and honest.
To find out more about critical illness cover and life insurance, give us a call on 01822 855555 today or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.