PruProtect, Zurich, Ageas and Ellipse have committed to joining the Income Protection Task Force’s IP awareness campaign Seven Families.
Representatives from the four insurers pledged their commitment to thE initiative at its launch in London yesterday.
Aviva, Friends Life and Scottish Widows have previously committed to make financial contributions to the scheme.
The IPTF hopes the campaign will increase awareness and take-up of income protection. It is working with charity Disability UK to select seven families from across the UK to take part.
Using expected donations of £20,000 each from participating insurers the initiative will pay monthly income for seven families where the main breadwinner is unable to work due to illness or injury.
IPTF co-chair Peter Le Beau said he expects each family to get a maximum of £20,000 over the year, or 48 per cent of the total budget. Another 22 per cent of the total will go to making a series of films charting the families’ progress, 21 per cent will go on communications and 9 per cent will go to Disability UK.
Le Beau said contracts will be sent to all major insurers in the next few days for them to officially sign up to the campaign and that he was encouraged by the positive approach of insurers.
He said: “I have been talking to companies over a long period about funding. We have been talking about it ‘in principle’, but from today onwards we are talking about a real commitment.
“Above all we aim to bring real hope and real help to seven families devastated by serious health problems.”
Protection Review chief executive Kevin Carr said the multi-media content created by the campaign could be used by advisers to sell IP.
He said: “If you have a dozen or so insurers we will be having very positive conversations with them saying we can work with you to promote this to intermediaries.
“It means they have a different way of mentioning IP using the tools and YouTube clips and whatever else is created to give them a slightly quirky or fun way of bring up protection, rather than saying ‘OK shall we talk about protection now?’ which no adviser or client really likes doing.”
Aviva’s interim income protection director Louise Colley said take-up of IP ranges between 5 and 8 per cent depending on the size of families. Life insurance take-up ranges between 26 and 41 per cent and critical insurance cover is somewhere between 8 and 13 per cent. She said this gap means advisers should get behind the campaign because it could lead to more business for them.
She said: “If you look at how many life insurance policies or critical illness policies are sold compared to IP policies there is room for IP sales to rise.”