• Rachael Panteney

Critical Illness Cover or Serious Illness Cover?

Updated: Oct 28, 2020

Wait, what? I know, it's confusing. Just when you think you understand what types of insurances you need, along comes another one to muddy the waters.

Both do roughly the same thing - in that they both pay out a sum of money once you have been diagnosed with a specified illness or condition but the difference is in when, and how much they pay out.

Medical advancements mean that whilst once suffering a specific condition would be an immediate payout, now that isn't necessarily the case. For example - a "minor" heart attack. This may mean a short period off work to recover, and some small lifestyle adjustments but long term you are not impacted too much.

Years ago, a heart attack was an automatic payout but now, it has to be a specific severity to trigger a payout under a critical illness policy. The same applies to certain cancers like skin, breast and prostate - they have to reach a certain severity before a critical illness payout.

Critical illness Cover Usually covers 40-59 conditions, dependent on insurer. Upon diagnosis of one of the specified conditions, at the specified severity, you would receive a lump sum payment of the policy amount, and the policy would end. It has done it's job.

Serious illness Cover Covers up to 62 conditions on the same basis of critical illness - a 100% payout on diagnosis of a specific severity. But - and this is a big but- it will also pay out a lower percentage on a further 91 conditions.

That "minor" heart attack I mentioned earlier? Could see you be paid out 25%, 50% or even 75% of your cover. The greater the severity, the greater the payout.

But the policy doesn't end there. The part you haven't used sits there waiting until you need it again. Either until your current condition meets the next severity trigger point, or even something unrelated. You keep claiming until the pot is used up.

If you would like to know more get in touch. We can also offer a free review of your existing policies to assess cover levels.

Rachael Panteney

Financial Adviser

Willow Tree Financial Services

01323 436680


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