We have written this serious illness cover guide as many people may not have a full understanding of what this cove offers or that all policies are the same.Have you got serious illness cover? How would the sudden onset of a serious illness impact your financial well-being? If you were to be suddenly affected by a serious illness like cancer, heart attack, or a stroke, there is no doubt that this could have a significant bearing on your ability to maintain your lifestyle and provide for your dependents.
Serious Illness Cover Guide
Serious illness may affect your ability to work at all, or you may have to reduce your work hours significantly, leading to a substantial drop in income. This decline in income could in turn impact on your ability to continue meeting your day-to-day expenses and overheads, such as mortgage and other loan repayments, as well as utility and other everyday bills.
If you are an employee and pay PRSI, the social welfare Illness Benefit or Invalidity Pension may replace part of this lost income. However, the benefits are low and if you are self-employed you are not covered for these benefits.
A serious illness cover policy could help offer you financial stability if you were to experience a sharp drop in income due to a serious illness.
What is Specified Serious Illness Cover?
Serious illness cover pays you a tax-free lump sum if you are diagnosed with a specific illness covered by your policy. This lump sum can be used to pay living expenses, your mortgage, short-term debt, and your medical expenses, if necessary. On the diagnosis of certain illnesses covered in your policy the full capital sum insured is payable and for other, less serious illnesses, part of the capital sum is payable.
Serious illness cover can also be called ‘critical illness cover’ and ‘specified illness cover’. Though it is often sold as an optional extra on a life insurance or mortgage protection policy, it can also be sold as an insurance policy on its own.
Every insurance company is different and will cover different illnesses. The precise definitions of each illness that qualifies for a pay-out will also likely differ, as will decisions on whether the full or partial sum insured is payable on a confirmed medical diagnosis of that illness.
Some serious illness policies pay out a certain amount if you are diagnosed as requiring certain serious surgery such as coronary artery bypass, graft or heart-valve replacement or repair surgery. This immediate payment can help you to get immediate medical care and give you more options about when and where to have the surgery carried out.
Most serious illness policies also cover your children for a limited amount of up to €25,000, should they be unfortunate enough to suffer from certain serious illnesses covered under the policy.
Cancer Only Insurance Cover:
Currently, on the Irish market, only one insurer provides cancer-only cover, which may be suitable to some people for you for a number of reasons: the specified cover is what you are looking for and you are not interested in protection against other illnesses; the cost will be cheaper than more comprehensive cover, and you may have a pre-existing medical condition which means you cannot get comprehensive cover but the specialised cover may still be open to you.
How much will serious illness coverage cost me?
The monthly cost of a serious illness policy will depend on a number of factors:
- How old you are when you take out the cover
- How long do you want the cover, i.e. the term of the policy
- The level of coverage you want, and whether you want this coverage to increase annually
- Your general health
- Whether you smoke or not; smokers will be charged more
- Whether you want the serious illness covered on its own, or added to a life insurance policy
We shop around for you for the best serious illness coverage based on your needs and financial circumstances. We only recommend the most comprehensive cover policies, while we also guarantee the cheapest price. Get Quote
Can I add serious illness coverage to my life insurance coverage?
You can take out serious illness coverage on its own or as an addition to life insurance coverage. For example, you can arrange for your life insurance coverage to be paid early if you are diagnosed as suffering from any of the illnesses covered by the policy. In this case, the cover is paid once only, either on serious illness or on death. Get Quote
Alternatively, you could arrange for the serious illness cover to be paid in addition to your life assurance cover. This latter option is more expensive.
Talk to us about the option of adding serious illness coverage to your life insurance policy. We will be able to advise you on whether it is the best approach for you. Call: 01 845 0049, or enquire online.
Ken O’Gorman – QFA
OneQuote.ie | Smart Financial Protection