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Protection insurers overhauling policies with coronavirus changes

  • 30/03/2020
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Protection insurers overhauling policies with coronavirus changes
Protection providers have made a number of changes to their policies and underwriting questions in light of the coronavirus outbreak.


Some of the changes made by protection providers mean new customers will not benefit from the same level of cover as existing borrowers.

Here is a round up of some of the main changes:



New customers applying for life insurance, critical illness cover (CIC) and income protection will be asked extra coronavirus related questions. They will be asked if they have they symptoms of coronavirus, if they have tested positive for the illness, whether they are self-isolating because of symptoms, or for another reason, or because they have had contact with someone who may have coronavirus. Yes answers will trigger a referral to an underwriter.

Coronavirus is not a condition covered by CIC but if the virus leads to conditions which are met by the policy such as kidney, liver, respiratory failure the claim will be met. This clarity has been provided by many other CIC providers.

Aviva has extended its policy conditions to include self-isolation measures. In the event of a claim for incapacity, if the policy holder is self-isolating, and then is diagnosed and needs to claim, Aviva will include the self-isolation period as part of the deferred period. Again, this inclusion to terms and conditions has been adopted by the larger providers.


L&G protection insurance

Legal & General has removed a recently launched feature of its income protection product that allowed customers to receive a pay out after being off work for two weeks. This has been reset to four weeks.


L&G general insurance

Legal and General general insurance is operated by Fairmead Insurance, which is part of LV= General Insurance.

It has withdrawn unemployment cover for new customers. Those who have a quote for unemployment cover which is still within its validity period are not affected.



LV= has put lots of information for advisers on its website.

One of the biggest changes to its Personal Sick Pay product is the introduction of a 9 March cut off.

Existing customers, or those who applied before 9 March who have a day one or one week waiting period before their sick pay kicks in, will have their claim considered if they have been medically advised to self-isolate in line with NHS guidance and are unable to work from home.

This relates to someone who has symptoms of a temperature or cough or if a household member is showing coronavirus symptoms.

Those applying on or after 9 March, if they enter a period of isolation but are not suffering from an illness will not be covered and a claim will not be paid.



Uinsure has removed its unemployment cover for new applicants.

It has also temporarily removed the ability to add landlords legal expenses to new landlords insurance quotes.

The provider said this was due to the rent guarantee element of the policy being impacted by the government’s decision to ban tenant evictions for three months due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Any quotes including this cover with a start date of 24 March or later will no longer be available to purchase and should be re-quoted.

A revised legal expenses product excluding rent guarantee cover is being developed.


Friendly societies

A number of smaller friendly societies have begun to apply coronavirus exclusions to new income protection policies.

British Friendly has introduced the exclusion for applications received on or after 14 March.

Holloway Friendly’s exclusion applies to new applications received from 17 March with deferred periods of one, four and eight weeks.

The Exeter has issued this exclusion statement to applications that have not been underwritten by 18 March, even if they have been submitted:

“In the first 12 months after policy start date, any claims due to, or arising from symptoms of respiratory illnesses which includes colds, coughs, influenza-like illnesses, coronavirus infections and upper respiratory tract infections, with or without fever [will be excluded].”

Any claims for self-isolation will not be considered by the society on or after 16 March.

Cirencester and Shepherds Friendly Societies have made similar changes.


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