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If you are like me, you probably don’t 100% trust Insurance Companies around this scary time of our lives. Many of my families have different protection policies with lots of different providers and might be thinking is this a get-out clause for the Insurance Companies if something happens to me or a member of my family?

By the end of this article, I am hoping to shed a light and motivate you to read the small print of your protection policies so you know exactly what you are paying for.

All Insurance Companies have their own terms for each product they sell but in general, you will find that all existing policies will allow for valid claims even if the reason for the claim is the COVID-19 virus.

The cover you have depends on the type of policy you have and the benefits you selected when you took the policy out. Here’s an overview of types of cover and the likely impact of COVID-19:

Life Cover

If you have life cover on your policy and death occurs as a result of COVID-19, the death benefit will still be paid assuming any other conditions for payment of a death benefit are met. In general, there is no exclusion in life policies for death arising from a disease such as COVID-19.

Serious Illness Cover

While it depends on the terms of the policy you hold (it is so important to check as there is more grey area here), COVID-19 is not one of the serious illnesses covered by most policies which would result in a serious illness benefit being paid. What serious illnesses are covered will be clearly set out in your policy conditions and in some cases the severity level required before an amount is paid. While COVID-19 itself may not be covered, COVID-19 does not impact your ability to claim for serious illness benefit if you meet the definition of one or more of the serious illnesses that are covered by the policy.

Hospital Cash

If you have coverage under your policy to protect you in the event you are hospitalised, then hospitalisation as a result of COVID-19 won’t prevent you from claiming on that cover. Being recommended to isolate or moving out of the hospital to an isolation unit (temporary hotel). This time period when you leave hospital would most likely not be covered.

Income Protection

If you have income protection benefit under your policy, COVID-19 won’t adversely impact that benefit. If you meet the definition of disability as set out in your policy conditions then your income protection benefit will be paid after any waiting period that applies. No new conditions should be imposed and payment will be made where a valid claim arises under the existing terms.

New Policy

If you are currently in the process of taking out a new policy then before the policy starts, it is crucial that if you have a test for COVID-19 then you must inform your Insurance Company.

If you are applying to take out a policy and have tested positive for COVID-19 or are awaiting test results for COVID-19, a final decision on an application for cover will more than likely be postponed until you have either fully recovered or the result of the test is confirmed as negative.

After the policy has started then this disclosure of a test isn’t necessary unless you are wanting to claim under your new policy.

I hope this has helped to give you a general overview of the impact of COVID-19 on your typical protection policies. For specific advice on your policy then read your terms or call the life offices directly to discuss in more detail.

I am always available to my families to give them any guidance they may need in this area so email allan@financialwellbeing.ie or call me on 021 482 3635.

Stay safe,

Allan