As weeks go, the last seven days have been particularly busy in the protection market. The week saw two insurers whose critical illness products had been left behind by the raft of changes from other insurers in the market finally launch upgrades, whilst there was also a big technology partnership announced on Thursday. In this insight we bring you a wrap up of the leading stories from the week.
LV= upgrade and introduce a number of new features to their critical illness plan
For some time the LV= critical illness plan has been the poor relation to their Income Protection propositions, but last Friday saw some much needed TLC given to the plan. In terms of the core critical illness cover, the changes included the addition of cover for 14 lower grade cancers, brain abscess, heart failure, severe sepsis, spinal stroke and syringomyelia or syringobulbia along with enhanced wordings for Parkinsons Plus syndromes and brain injury. There were also a number of conditions amalgamated, one of which our panel of independent doctors disagree with.
In wider changes there was the addition of a “Cost of Cancer” benefit, an increase to the amount paid for additional conditions and an increase to the amount and age at which they will pay additional benefits for serious neurological conditions.
Scottish Widows announce simple, clear and concise critical illness wordings
Like LV=, the Scottish Widows critical illness plan had grown stagnant in recent times, but their announcement on Monday promised much improvement. Among the enhancements was the introduction of their body graphic (previously launched via their branch product Plan & Protect), which provides a simple and very visual way of explaining the conditions that are covered. In terms of the critical illness changes the focus was very much on simplification of wordings whilst also extending cover which resulted in a reduction in the number of definitions but an overall increase in cover.
Wider product changes also saw an increase in the amount paid for additional conditions and child critical illness claims along with a positive change to child eligibility criteria.
Protection Guru Partner with iPipeline
Perhaps the most exciting news for us at Protection Guru was the announcement of our partnership with iPipeline to provide product feature analysis in SolutionBuilder. The integration will enable users of the SolutionBuilder system to compare up to five insurer products based on the quality of their products’ underlying features alongside price.
The new “Product Feature Report” will be available on all term products in the system including life protection, critical illness, income protection, business protection and business protection critical illness. Where critical illness is included in the product users will be able to access our independent panel of medical experts analysis of critical illness wordings, which highlights the plans that are most likely to pay a claim based on the clients’ own unique circumstances.
From all of us at Protection Guru, we hope you have a great weekend!