Terms and conditions apply

When you apply for life insurance, you can also add critical illness coverage as a separate policy that covers different things. However, if you buy them together, a successful claim on the critical illness cover won't affect your life insurance policy. This means that your life insurance policy will still pay out if you pass away during the policy term.

Do critical illness cover and life insurance the same thing?

It's a common myth that critical illness cover, and life insurance are the same thing. While both can help provide financial support in the event of a significant life event, they serve different purposes.

Life insurance is designed to provide for your loved ones financially if you pass away within the policy term. It can help provide for your children and partner when you're no longer around. Some policies may also pay out the cover amount on a terminal illness diagnosis, if the diagnosis meets the policy's definition and you're not expected to survive for more than 12 months.

On the other hand, critical illness cover is designed to help you financially in the event of a serious illness. If you are diagnosed with or undergo surgery for a critical illness covered by the policy and survive for at least 10 days, you may receive a lump sum pay-out. This can help ease financial worries while you focus on your recovery.

Our Critical Illness Cover is designed to provide financial support if you're diagnosed with a critical illness or total permanent disability covered by the plan. You can choose the amount of cover you need, how you want it to pay out, and whether you want to combine different types of cover. The plan is available through an independent financial adviser and can also be taken out with your partner. It can help ease the financial burden and allow you to focus on your recovery. However, it's important to note that the plan has no cash-in value and will stop if you stop paying the premiums.

What are the benefits of critical illnesses?

Adding this cover for an extra cost could be worth considering. And it’s easy to see why:

  • Help protect your family financially: Critical illness insurance can provide financial protection for your family if you experience an illness that prevents you from working. It offers coverage for specific medical conditions that can be costly to treat, ensuring that your family has the      financial resources they need to maintain their lifestyle while you focus on your recovery.
  • Monthly payments stay the same: the monthly payments for your life insurance policy with critical illness cover will remain constant     throughout the policy term, giving you peace of mind that there won't be any sudden increases in price. The only time the cost may change is if you make changes to your policy.
  • Direct payment: If you're eligible for a Critical illness payment, this will normally be made directly to you. You can choose how you want to use it, for example: If you qualify for a critical illness payment, it will be paid directly to you. You can use the cash sum in various ways, such as paying off outstanding mortgage or rent, covering utility bills, or paying for medical treatment. Our company provide 3 coverage for critical illnesses, including cancer, heart attack, stroke.

Which illnesses are included?

If you choose to include Critical illnesses in your life insurance, you’ll be insured for the 3 commonly claimed-on critical illnesses like Cancer, Heart attack and Stroke.

  • Cancer – excluding less advanced cases.
  • Heart attack – of specified severity
  • Stroke - of specified severity

By focusing on cancer, heart attack and stroke, Critical 3 is simple to understand and you’re not paying to insure yourself against illnesses that you're less likely to claim on.

Not every illness or condition is included within Critical 3. For example, not all types of cancer are covered, and you also have to survive for 14 days after diagnosis to be eligible for a claim.

For a list of what is and isn’t covered, you can read our Life Insurance - Insurance Details document

Who gets the life insurance or critical illness cover payout?

When it comes to life insurance, the pay-out can either go to the joint policyholder or, if it's a single policy, it's paid into your estate for the executor to distribute. However, if you're looking for more control over who gets the pay-out, you could consider putting your policy in a Trust. By doing this, the money won't be counted as part of your estate and will usually be exempt from Inheritance Tax.     If you have critical illness cover and make a full or partial claim, you’d get the lump sum as the policyholder, which means that the money, and the decision making, would be in your hands. It's important to note that a critical illness cover pay-out can make a significant difference, and having control over how that money is used can be helpful.

Can you take out critical illness cover and life insurance?

Depending on your insurer, you may be able to take out life insurance and critical illness insurance as separate policies or as one combined policy. Some insurers require you to purchase both types of insurance together in an integrated policy, but our policies are standalone. When you apply for our life insurance, you have the option to add critical illness cover as an individual policy, so you don't have to take out both. One benefit of having separate policies is that a successful critical illness claim won't affect your life insurance policy, which can still pay out if you pass away during the policy term.

What could the pay-out help cover?

A critical illness policy provides a lump sum payment that can be the full cover amount or a partial payment if it's an "additional" critical illness. While it's not a replacement for your regular salary, the lump sum payment can ease the financial burden if you're unable to work for a while. The tax-free pay-out can be used for general living costs, such as rent payments, loan or mortgage instalments, bills, childcare, and potential treatment and travel costs related to your condition. With life insurance, the focus is on what your loved ones might use the pay-out for when you're gone, including funeral costs, making up for lost salary, covering unexpected expenses, or helping them stay in the family home.

What happens if I make a claim?

If a Critical illness claim is approved, the Critical illness insurance policy will end. However, the life insurance coverage will continue, and a claim can be made for death or terminal illness if occurs within the policy term.

Why choose our critical illness cover?

We can assist you in becoming healthier today

Our critical illness insurance includes access to health and wellness services via Smart Health.

We've got heritage

We’ve been protecting people like you for over 250 years.

You can rely on us

In 2022, we paid out £400 million in critical illness claims, demonstrating our commitment to supporting our policyholders during challenging times.

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