Why cover?
  • affects 1 in 4 women / 1 in 5 men before retirement
  • 94.1% of the critical illness claims are paid
  • protect yourself and your family if you get seriously ill
Why us?
  • get the cover that will pay when you need it
  • save up to 35%, cover from £5 a month
  • free, fast and without obligation quotes
Insurers: Aviva, Legal & General, Liverpool Victoria, Scottish Widows, Vitality, Zurich

Total disablement and critical illness insurance: Is it included in the cover?

Becoming totally and permanently disabled can mean financial disaster for the family. You may be faced with the prospect of a home foreclosure and even bankruptcy.

Definitions of Total and Permanent Disablement

When claiming for total disablement, you must check the policy’s definition of total and permanent disablement. There are various definitions that can affect your claim. Various providers can use different definitions or a combination of the following definitions.

  • Own occupation.

    This means that you are unable to perform your own occupation. For instance, if you are a newscaster and contract a macular degenerative disease that makes it impossible for you to read the news, then you can claim against the policy even if you can still perform other jobs.

    By definition, “Own Occupation” total and permanent disability refers to material and substantial duties that are normally performed as part of your occupation and your duties cannot be changed either by you or your employer.

  • Suited occupation.

    This refers to material and substantial duties that you cannot perform and are related to any occupation that you are eligible for, due to your educational background, work experience and training.

  • Any occupation.

    This refers to disability for any kind of work, regardless of your training or qualifications. When this is the definition of total and permanent disability, it can be very hard to claim, since it will mean that you are really disabled so severely that you can’t perform any kind of work.

  • Specified work tasks.

    This is usually used to define disability for those who are aged 60 and above. Since they are no longer employed, they need to show that they are unable to perform a specified number of work tasks. The work tasks include walking, climbing, lifting, bending, getting in and out of a car and writing or communicating.

  • Activities of daily living.

    This is also a definition that can be used for those aged 60 and above and those who are not in paid employment. This type of definition refers to the inability to carry out any three of the activities of daily living, which can include washing, getting dressed and undressed, feeding one’s self, maintaining personal hygiene, getting between rooms and getting in and out of bed.

When buying a critical illness policy, you can choose the definition of disability that you want to apply to you.

Why buy critical illness insurance to cover disability?

There are critical illness policies that also provide coverage for total and permanent disability. Thus, if the insured gets totally disabled while the policy is in force, he can claim against his policy to help with the expenses now that he is totally disabled and cannot earn an income.

Check to see whether total and permanent disablement is paid in addition to the list of covered critical illnesses or is just a part of the list of critical illnesses. For the first, the insured can claim for both the total disability as well as the critical illness. However, if total disablement is just part of the list of covered critical illness, then the insured can claim only once.

State benefits.  The government can help families with disabled persons to make ends meet – but it can be pretty tight financially. You are not assured that you can afford to maintain your family’s current standard of living with the state benefit allowances you stand to receive.

A substantial supplement to the family’s finances. Critical illness cover can provide a welcome help to families whose breadwinner becomes disabled. When a person is disabled, not only will the family lose the benefit of his monthly income but also need to shell out money for the disabled person’s care and treatment.

Pros of Critical Illness Insurance

  • Provides a tax-free lump sum that one can use for treatment and disability related expenses.
  • The amount of cover is at your option, and not based on your current level of income
  • You can receive state disability benefits without this affecting your claim
  • Some providers tack in disability recovery bonuses and recovery assistance
  • You have the option to get lifetime cover so you are protected against disability whatever your age

Cons of Critical Illness Insurance

  • You need to meet the definition of the total and permanent disability for the claim to be payable.
  • Choosing an “Own Occupation” definition for total and permanent disability can be more expensive.
  • You can claim only once, after the claim your cover will no longer be effective.

Considering other disability-related cover? You can also look into disability insurance – read Critical Illness vs. Disability Insurance to know more.

Last updated on: 18.1.2013

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