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Healthy IP options from PruProtect

PruProtect, the joint venture between Prudential and South African company Discovery, has launched an income protection product with an own occupation definition of disability for all occupations.

The plan has two types of cover. Primary cover is the lower-cost option, so its benefits are more limited than the comprehensive cover.

The maximum cover under the primary option is 50 per cent of earnings up to a £90,000 maximum, while for comprehensive cover it is 60 per cent of earnings for the first £30,000 a year, then 50 per cent of earnings up to a maximum of £150,000.

Both options include recovery benefit, which provides specialist support and treatment from selected providers. The maximum for this is £1,000 for primary cover and £2,000 for comprehensive cover.

To encourage people to get back to work, both options also provide a back to work benefit. For primary cover this is 25 per cent of monthly benefit in the first month and 10 per cent in the second. This rises to 50 per cent of monthly benefit in the first month and 25 per cent in the second with the comprehensive cover.

Both options allow a choice of guaranteed or reviewable rates and premiums can also be reduced through the Vitality health programme, where points are awarded for healthy lifestyles. The programme also provides discounts from a range of companies, such as subsidised gym membership, health screens and Eurostar travel.

A choice of level, decreasing or index-linked cover is available alongside usual features such as guaranteed insurability and houseperson’s cover.

Unemployment cover from St Andrews Insurance is provided at an extra cost and there is a range of deferred periods, including seven days for self-employed clients. Payments to self-employed clients are backdated to day one in the event of a claim for deferred periods of seven days and one month.

This plan appears to offer advisers what they want for their income protection clients, with innovative features such as the recovery and back to work benefits. However, primary cover inevitably has some limitations compared with comprehensive cover. There is no waiver of premium and guaranteed insurability is limited to a change in salary following promotion or changes to a mortgage.

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