Is Coronavirus covered under a Critical Illness Insurance?

3 min Read Published: 17 Nov 2020

Coronavirus and critical illness coverLiving with the uncertainty that the current pandemic has brought with it has been difficult for most, and while we try to maintain our physical and mental wellbeing through these testing times, we inevitably worry about the impact that becoming seriously ill might have on our lives and the people around us.

In this article, we answer the following questions:

If you'd like to understand how Coronavirus impacts a life insurance policy, then this article will help you 'Does my life insurance policy cover Coronavirus?'

And, if you have questions about protecting your income against sickness then this article will answer your questions 'Is Coronavirus covered under an income protection insurance?'

Will my existing critical illness policy cover me if I get Coronavirus?

Coronavirus or COVID-19 is not considered a 'critical illness' as it doesn't fit any of the listed definitions on a critical illness policy. While a critical illness policy would not pay out on the specific diagnosis of Coronavirus, it could conceivably pay out if your condition became more serious and you developed other medical complications that did then fall under a specified definition. If your critical illness insurance policy has life insurance attached to it (as many policies do) and you were to die as a result of Coronavirus, then, of course, your policy would pay out on the life insurance benefit.

Critical Illness provider Zurich explains more:

Coronavirus is not a specified ‘Critical Illness’ on Zurich’s policy. In some cases, people do die as a result, and in such circumstances, the life insurance attached to our plans would pay out.

Under our “Respiratory Failure – Of Specified Severity” definition, it is possible a claim might be presented but the opinion of our Claims and Medical Officer is that the coronavirus is unlikely to produce the permanent symptoms or impairment to lung function required to meet this definition. We will consider any such claims presented on the basis of the individual circumstances.

Will a new critical illness policy cover me for coronavirus?

No, much like an existing critical illness policy, Coronavirus is not one of the listed conditions that are covered by a critical illness policy. Again, while Coronavirus isn't specifically covered, your policy may still pay out if you developed complications which led to other definitions being met.

Additionally, most critical illness policies are taken out with combined life insurance and so if you were to go on to die from an illness linked to Coronavirus, then the policy would pay out on the life benefit. For more information on critical illness, check out our article 'Critical illness - what is it and is it worth having?'

Has the cost of critical illness insurance been affected by Coronavirus?

We haven't seen any evidence to suggest that the cost of critical illness insurance has been affected by Coronavirus. Considering the inevitable increase in death claims, it remains to be seen if these will have a knock-on effect to the cost of other personal insurance products such as critical illness insurance. It's always worth noting that pandemics do encourage more purchases of these types of insurances that may balance some of the cost of claims.

What is important to note is that your costs are based on your age and you can fix them once you start a policy. So, the longer you put the insurance off, the more expensive it will be when it comes to purchasing it.

How to arrange the right critical illness insurance at the best price

Although there are comparison sites that will give you costs for critical illness insurance, many do not give enough steer on how to choose the parameters correctly for your personal needs. To be prudent, you will want to optimise the different parameters and features for what you're spending. Some policies will give you better opportunities to claim, should the need arise. Additionally, there are an array of additional benefits that are available including virtual GP access, mental health support, rehabilitation support amongst many others. You don't have to be claiming against your policy to access some of these, so they really are very useful.

In our search for expert advice in this area, we vetted the services of LifeSearch*. Its advisers are trained to provide bespoke and free advice to customers looking into life, critical illness and sickness insurances. Not only are the advisers trained to understand the policies in detail, they will assess your personal circumstances to ensure that this is the right type of insurance for you. You can arrange a call with an adviser by completing this form*. As a Money to the Masses reader, you will receive a £50 cashback once your policy is arranged too.

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