Updated: August 15, 2019

Critical Illness Cover for Stroke

Does critical illness cover strokes? In this article we'll look at how policies work, and how to ensure you're protected, no matter the severity of your stroke

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Pete Mugleston

Author: Pete Mugleston - Mortgage Expert

Updated: August 15, 2019

Suffering a stroke can have a huge impact on your finances and your ability to work.

Life-threatening medical conditions can often occur when we least expect them. After all, no one wants to imagine that something so serious could happen to them.

However, the shocking truth is that every year in the UK more than 77,000 people experience their first stroke. For many patients, recovery is possible, however, the loss of earnings through not being able to work can be financially detrimental.

That’s why many people make the decision to take out critical illness cover.

To ensure you take out a critical illness policy that covers you for a stroke or mini stroke, call us on 0808 189 0463 or make an enquiry.

The insurance experts we work with can source the best policies to suit your preferences. There’s no fee, no obligation to make a purchase, and they’re completely impartial.

Does critical illness cover pay out after a stroke?

Most critical illness insurance policies do cover strokes, however, you may find that some only pay out if your illness closely meets the definition in their policy.

This definition may vary between insurers, though a stroke is usually defined as, “The death of brain tissue due to inadequate blood supply or haemorrhage within the skull resulting in permanent neurological deficit with persisting clinical symptoms.”

If an insurance company assesses your case and decides that your particular illness doesn’t quite fit their definition, they may reject your claim.

This can be frustrating for many policyholders who have continuously paid premiums to protect their finances in such an event.

As well as this, there are some critical illness insurers that can delay paying out for a claim for up to 90 days.

This can be a huge problem for many claimants who may be relying on their payout to cover bills or a mortgage payment.

Because of this, it’s important to work with an insurance advisor who can check the claim rates of each of the insurance companies.

An advisor can also look into the definitions of each policy to establish which one will be able to offer you the most protection and under what circumstances.

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Does it cover mini strokes?

TIA, often referred to as a mini stroke, has similar symptoms to a stroke but only lasts a few minutes and causes no permanent damage.

While a mini stroke can still affect and limit communication skills, mobility and independence, some insurance providers may not include it within their list of covered illnesses.

It’s also important to note that some insurers can reject a claim if there is sufficient evidence of a mini stroke. In the event that you make a claim, you may be asked to provide evidence of a definite diagnosis supported by scans or tests.

If you suffer a mini stroke and need to make a claim, a good tip is to contact your insurer beforehand to find out what evidence will be required. This can save you a lot of wasted time and gathering the right evidence will be vital in supporting your claim.

Despite some insurers not including a mini stroke in their policies, there are still those that do and there are also those that offer extra cover for an additional fee. 

Contact an advisor to find out which insurers include mini strokes within their cover and whether critical illness cover is worth it for you.

How do insurers calculate the cost of cover?

Prices for critical illness stroke cover can vary between providers, often because of the level of cover provided within their policy.

Other factors that can affect the cost of your critical illness stroke cover include your:

  • Age
  • Weight
  • Health
  • Medical history

It can be tempting to choose the cheapest policy however, this may not always the better option as it may have less benefits, including which conditions you can get covered.

That being said, there are critical illness insurers that provide cover for strokes, mini strokes and other serious illnesses with more affordable premiums.

Chat to an advisor today to find out how you can get the most competitive deal.

How to find critical illness insurance that covers strokes

A loss of independence is a lot to come to terms with for many stroke survivors, so the reassurance of a payout which can cover expenses or the cost of hired help can be a relief.

But how can you be sure that your policy will cover you?

Work with a critical illness insurance expert

Critical illness policies can be long and tedious to read, but this is a process that is vital to ensuring that your contract will cover and payout in the event of a stroke.

Insurance experts like the ones we work with  can quickly identify any clauses that may be unfavourable or could prevent you from successfully making a claim after having a stroke.

Using their experience and knowledge of the insurance industry, they can help you to determine which insurers are most likely to pay out if you should need to make a claim, plus compare numerous policy prices to find you an affordable yet fair amount of cover.

An advisor can also look at any existing policies and see if it should be replaced, for example if the definitions are not comprehensive enough or are limited.

Talk to an expert to kickstart your search for critical illness stroke cover.

Check how often they pay out for claims

Incidences of stroke typically account for 6% of all successful critical illness claims. This figure (along with the rate of payout) should be checked before signing a contract with an insurance provider, as this can provide insight into how likely the company is to pay you if you have to make a claim.

Researching payout rates can be time consuming, so you may need to seek the advice of a professional who can do this for you. That being said, all insurance companies are now legally obliged to state this information so it should be easily identifiable on their website.

If you can’t see it, contact the insurance company and request this information along with their list of covered illnesses. Alternatively, make an enquiry and we’ll put you in touch with an expert who can do the legwork for you.

Think carefully about how much cover you’ll need

Every critical illness protection provider offers a maximum amount of cover you can claim and this usually ranges from £25,000 upwards.

It can be helpful to calculate the amount of payout you would need to cover your expenses in the event that you have a stroke and can no longer earn.

The cost of recover should also be considered. Think about how long you could potentially be off work, and whether the minimum payout would cover your mortgage, bills and other living expenses.For example, 12% of stroke survivors have to move into residential care. Could you afford this with the level of cover offered in your critical illness policy?

Working out these costs against your payout can help you to determine which insurer to go with, so it’s important that your calculations are accurate.

For help with this, work with an insurance advisor. They can help you look at your outgoings and assess how much you may need to cover your expenses

Review your cover regularly

A good tip to remember is that after purchasing your insurance it can be helpful to regularly review your cover.

As mentioned previously, not all insurance providers pay out or cover for every disease, disability or illness and so over time, you may decide that you want to increase your cover perhaps because of age or a change of health.

When reading through your policy and checking the terms and conditions which refer to the list of diseases that are covered, it can be a good idea to check the level of cover offered by other critical illness insurers.

Alternatively, you may decide to purchase additional critical illness cover which can extend the range of cover in your current policy. For the best advice, speak to an advisor.

Talk to an expert

Speak to an insurance professional to establish the best critical illness stroke cover for you.

Call us on 0808 189 0463 or fill out an enquiry form to kickstart your search.  The advisors we work with will answer any questions you have to ensure you are aware of the pros and cons of each critical illness policy.

Ask a quick question

We can help! We know everyone's circumstances are different, that's why we work with brokers who are experts in critical illness cover. Ask us a question and we'll get the best expert to help.

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Pete Mugleston

Pete Mugleston

Mortgage Expert

About the author

Pete, an expert in all things mortgages, cut his teeth right in the middle of the credit crunch. With plenty of people needing help and few mortgage providers lending, Pete found great success in going the extra mile to find mortgages for people whom many others considered lost causes. The experience he gained, coupled with his love of helping people reach their goals, led him to establish Online Mortgage Advisor, with one clear vision – to help as many customers as possible get the right advice, regardless of need or background.

Pete’s presence in the industry as the ‘go-to’ for specialist finance continues to grow, and he is regularly cited in and writes for both local and national press, as well as trade publications, with a regular column in Mortgage Introducer and being the exclusive mortgage expert for LOVEMoney. Pete also writes for OMA of course!

FCA Disclaimer

*Based on our research, the content contained in this article is accurate as of the most recent time of writing. Lender criteria and policies change regularly so speak to one of the advisors we work with to confirm the most accurate up to date information. The information on the site is not tailored advice to each individual reader, and as such does not constitute financial advice. All advisors working with us are fully qualified to provide mortgage advice and work only for firms that are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. They will offer any advice specific to you and your needs.

Some types of buy to let mortgages are not regulated by the FCA. Think carefully before securing other debts against your home. As a mortgage is secured against your home, it may be repossessed if you do not keep up with repayments on your mortgage. Equity released from your home will also be secured against it.

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