Updated: July 22, 2019

Critical Illness Insurance: What is Covered

Wondering which conditions are covered by critical illness? In this article we'll look at what typical policies cover, and how to find the most comprehensive policy for your needs

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Pete Mugleston

Author: Pete Mugleston - Mortgage Expert

Updated: July 22, 2019

Critical illness insurance will pay a lump sum if you’re diagnosed with an illness that is defined in the policy’s terms, though each insurer will have a different set of health conditions that they’ll pay out for.

If you’re looking for critical illness insurance and want to know what conditions can be covered under it and if the policy is right for your needs, fear not. We’ve put together this short guide to give you an idea of what you can expect from a critical illness cover.

For more information about what is covered by critical illness cover, speak to one of the insurance experts we work with today. Call us on 0808 189 0463 or make an enquiry to get started.

What is covered by critical illness insurance?

Most critical illness covers will include a range of different illnesses, though how much cover you need will depend on your preferences.

Policies will usually contain the following seven core conditions:

Some lenders can offer up to 40 conditions, ranging from blindness to loss of limbs and Parkinson’s disease to Crohn’s disease.

Many companies will also pay out if the policyholder becomes permanently disabled, either by injury or illness. You may be able to select optional conditions to cover within your policy.

As long as you keep paying your premiums, your cover should stay the same throughout the term. Once your term ends, your cover will also stop.

Critical illness and your history

If you have a history of illness, pre-existing medical conditions, or a member(s) of your family who has been diagnosed with a critical illness, the insurer is likely to offer a higher premium as they will see you as higher risk.

Some insurers may even refuse to cover you in these circumstances, or at least refuse to cover the specific condition(s) that affected yourself or a family member.

However, the experts we work with have in-depth knowledge of the critical and life insurance industry and will be able to talk you through what is covered in each critical illness cover they source for you. For the best advice, make an enquiry today.

Terminal illness vs Critical illness

Bear in mind that critical illness and terminal illness are two different things. Life assurance tends to only pay out when you pass away, whereas critical illness will pay out a lump sum to support you financially in the event of you becoming seriously ill.

Many companies may offer you a deal to take out both covers. If you’d like to find out more, talk to one of the experts we work with. They have whole-of-market access, meaning that they can source providers who can offer you the best deals based on your personal circumstances and preferences.

If you want a comprehensive critical illness cover that also includes life insurance, make an enquiry about combination insurance today.

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What’s the most comprehensive critical illness cover?

This isn’t a straightforward question to answer, as whether you get the most comprehensive coverage from a provider will depend on a number of factors, including:

  • What is covered under the critical illness cover: what additional conditions do you want to add (if any)?
  • How long do you want the length of term to run?
  • Your age (the older you are, the more you’ll likely pay out)
  • Your overall health (if you’re a smoker or have a high BMI, expect to pay higher)
  • Pre-existing conditions: how will they affect your health in the future?

These will all determine how much higher—or lower—an individual will have to pay for their policy overall.

Like with most financial products, it’s always worth taking your time to research the providers and carefully examine the terms and conditions of each policy. However, it can be time-consuming to find critical illness insurance products and read their policies, which is why we recommend you get in touch with one of the experts we work with.

Their industry knowledge and contacts mean that they can do all the running around for you, whilst you can rest without having to any of the hard work. Make an enquiry and we’ll put you in touch with one of the experts we work with.

Insurance for groups

Critical illness insurance is typically for the individual only, but there are other policies which can cover more than one person, including:

  • Joint policy: This would cover you and another person
  • Family policy: This would cover you and your immediate family, e.g. partner and children

You may be limited to how many conditions you can get cover for if you take out a group policy, though you always have options. For more information about this type of critical illness cover, talk to an advisor.

Can I change what’s included in my critical illness cover?

Your ability to change the conditions covered in your critical illness insurance depends on your policy’s terms and conditions. Some insurers will let you add other conditions after you’ve taken out the policy, though your premium is likely to increase.

If you want to remove a condition from your policy, you may find it tricky. Like with most financial products, insurers are reluctant to remove aspects which could lower the monthly premium.

If you do take out a policy and change your mind, there’s usually a 30-day cooling off period where you can edit the conditions covered in the policy, or you can cancel it entirely and claim a refund.

With so much at stake, it’s advisable to speak with an expert before making any big financial decisions, as they can find policies to suit and run through the flexibility of each. Send us a message and we’ll connect you with someone shortly.

Alternatively, if you have an existing policy, the experts will be able to check it and see how much leeway you have if you wish to change what is covered by your critical illness insurance.

Speak to an expert about what is covered under critical illness insurance

It’s never easy to think about the future in the event of being affected by a critical illness, though planning for the future can give you peace of mind if you should unexpectedly fall ill.

The experts we work with know how important it is to find the right cover for your needs. Make an enquiry online or call us on 0808 189 0463  for a free, no-obligation chat about what is covered in a critical illness insurance policy and how you can get the best cover for your preferences and budget.

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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