The world is having to adapt to a new way of life after the outbreak of Covid-19. We received many questions about the effects of the pandemic on personal insurance products so we have put together this article to provide some information and guidance.
The following are the questions we've been asked and will answer in this article:
- Will my existing life insurance policy cover me if I die due to Covid-19?
- Will life insurance cover me if I have the Covid-19 vaccine?
- Will a new life insurance policy cover me for Coronavirus/Covid-19?
For similar guidance around income protection insurance, read our article 'Is Coronavirus covered under income protection insurance?'. If you're looking for guidance around critical illness insurance we've written about it in our article 'Is Coronavirus covered under a critical illness insurance?'
Will my existing life insurance policy cover me if I die due to Covid-19?
Yes, the good news is that all insurers have confirmed that they will pay out on life insurance if you die as a result of Coronavirus / Covid-19. Life insurance is protection insurance that is risk-assessed at the time that you apply (a process known as underwriting) and so once your policy starts, it is guaranteed to pay out in any event within the terms and conditions of the policy that you were offered. It is worth pointing out that the very small percentage of life insurance claims that are declined are usually due to the claimant having misrepresented facts at the application stage.
Tip - if you're considering making any changes to your existing life insurance policy or swapping it for a new one, don't cancel it until you have another one in place.
Will life insurance cover me if I have the Covid-19 vaccine?
Yes, there is no clause that excludes a claim based on following medical advice to have the Covid-19 vaccination. Life insurance covers new applicants and existing life insurance policyholders who have had the Covid-19 vaccine but don't penalise those who have chosen not to. The Covid-19 vaccine has been rolled out globally and millions of people have been advised to and had both sets of vaccinations, some will also have had the booster vaccination for Covid-19.
If a life insurance policyholder dies, the claims process usually involves verifying the cause of the death through a death certificate and if necessary, the insurance company will request your medical records. If your records indicated that you had received the Covid-19 vaccination, this would not invalidate your claim.
The Association of British Insurers (ABI) clarified some misinformation through the ABI coronavirus information hub for life insurance by confirming:
"There are some claims being made that having the Covid-19 vaccine will impact your life insurance cover. This is false. Receiving a vaccination against Covid-19 will not affect your life insurance cover, be it life insurance, private medical insurance or any other forms of personal insurance."
Will a new life insurance policy cover me for Coronavirus/Covid-19?
Yes, new life insurance applications will cover you if you die due to Covid-19. The policies themselves have not changed and are available in the same format as they were previously so there is no reason why death won't be covered. The level of cover that you selected at the outset based on the type of life insurance you bought will be unaffected by Covid-19.
However there may be a few extra questions to answer and where medicals or medical evidence from your health records are required, the application process may be a little slower while GP surgeries and other health services tackle the backlogs created by the pandemic.
If you are outstanding any tests or investigations for your health or indeed, awaiting treatment such as surgery, your life insurance application may be postponed until such time as this is complete. Bear in mind that not all insurance companies assess your circumstances in the same way and some may be happy to accept your application for life insurance while you await medical attention even if others are not.
Why you should buy life insurance now (if you haven't got it already)
One of the benefits of most life insurance policies (and how it differs from annually renewable policies like car insurance) is that the monthly premium is fixed from the day you take it out. That means that if the pandemic gets worse or if your health deteriorates, you won't have to pay increased premiums in the future because of these reasons.
Life insurance costs are calculated using your age and smoker status as well as other factors including how much cover you need; whether it is a cash lump sum or an income and over how long you wish to be covered. Your health will be assessed through a life insurance application form but after you start your policy, any change to your health will not affect your insurance.
If you are considering taking out life insurance then make sure you speak to an independent specialist as they will be able to search the whole market on your behalf. Especially, if you have health conditions to disclose, as they will select insurance companies that are favourable for you in terms of cost and the application process. They can also provide information about the best critical illness cover and income protection insurance if these are required
We have personally vetted the services of one of the UK's leading independent life insurance brokers, who can provide free advice to ensure you are buying the best policy for your needs as well as helping to complete the application forms. They will even chase the insurance company on your behalf and help you to put the policy into trust, meaning your family is not liable for any future inheritance tax on the policy. Additionally, if you decide to take a policy through them you will qualify for up to £100 cashback and you will receive free cover while your life insurance application is being processed.
If a link has an * beside it this means that it is an affiliated link. If you go via the link, Money to the Masses may receive a small fee which helps keep Money to the Masses free to use. The following link can be used if you do not wish to help Money to the Masses and do not wish to qualify for the cashback referred to in the article - LifeSearch