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  • Donald P McKenna

Looking past just price when buying life cover

Insuring your life is not the most welcome subject to be considering at the best of time bearing in mind that you are being asked to allocate hard earned money towards a product from which you will not receive any benefit. Remember the proceeds from a Life Assurance policy are generally paid out only when you die! Yet most people do recognise the need to provide some protection for dependents in the event of their demise.

For many years, the protection market and the policies available was one that was simply viewed in a “it does what it says on the tin” fashion and that would be a reasonable assessment. When seeking advice, the general and only questions to be answered were – Why do I need it? How much cover do I need? For how long? What is the cost?

For obvious reasons, a large focus was placed on obtaining the best price. While the above is still of major importance, there is now so much more to consider when comparing the various protection offerings from the Life Insurance companies. I've outlined below some of the key considerations when comparing the protection market that will ultimately ensure that you get the policy that meets your needs.

Term Life Assurance and Mortgage Protection Policies Nowadays, protection plans include a range of additional add-on benefits and options. While these could prove to be greatly valuable to their owners at some stage during the term of the policy they may not be relevant to everyone. This is where I can assist you in making the best decision based on your own personal circumstances.

Guaranteed Insurability For example, if you have a young family or you are planning to have a family, many life assurance plans now have the option for you to increase your cover (up to a certain amount) on the occurrence of particular life events without the need for medical evidence e.g. the birth or adoption of a child, getting married or moving home or re-mortgaging. Why not just take out a new policy when such event occurs, you might ask? If your circumstances were to change, particularly health wise, this might not be possible. These options do not require further evidence of health from when the policy was initially taken out. This is known as Guaranteed Insurability. Child Cover In a similar family related vein, life assurance companies will pay out a sum of money in the event of the death of a child (under the age of 18 or up to age 25 [depending on the insurer] if attending third level education)*. While nobody likes to think of such a tragic event, such benefits are worth comparing. Medical Support Services Another feature of more modern protection policies is the inclusion of additional medical support services. This feature can be extremely valuable for seeking a second opinion of a medical condition or even access to the support of a counselling service. Advanced Funeral Expenses Another example of a built-in feature is Advanced Funeral Expenses. These are paid in advance of the main lump sum which may be delayed while the claim is being processed and while the relevant documentation is being gathered. Do I need help? The above are just a few examples of benefits that are included in Term Life Assurance and Mortgage Protection contracts and the good news is that most of them are already included in the price. Another consideration is the existence of price-matching enabling the customer to get the best of both worlds. That is why it is vital to conduct a full comparison of the different providers offerings in this arena. All of this indicates the need for good advice.

As a qualified advisor, I have access to a range of tools to help analyse and identify the most suitable product for you and to help you to choose the right combination of cover for you and at the most competitive price. Just get in touch to see how I can help you make an informed decision.

*Subject to policy conditions set out in the policy document.

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