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Lower sum assured could lift CI business

Direct Life & Pensions believes take-up of critical-illness cover could be boosted if advisers sold policies with smaller sums assured.

Sales and marketing director Neil McCarthy said advisers should look at lower levels of cover that could be more relevant to the public. He said: “CI is seen as an expensive product and traditionally the adviser market will try to sell higher-value CI to cover a two or three-year period if something happens. I think there would much more success in terms of smaller sums assured, combined with a set of core definitions, so everyone can understand what they are being covered for.”

Bright Grey and Scottish Provident proposition director Roger Edwards said a low maximum sum assured CI product could require less underwriting but that would have to be reflected in the price.

Protection Review chief executive Kevin Carr believes there could be scope for a product that allows advisers to build up cover gradually from a low starting premium but where clients are granted automatic acceptance without additional underwriting.

He said: “Some advisers trying to sell protection start with perfection and go for high levels of CI cover, and this scares people. I think it is better to build upwards, rather than scaring people away with a high initial premium.”


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There is one comment at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. Despite a client’s priorities, requirements and circumstances, ultimately their choice of cover and premium will be dictated by cost and budget.

    It is common sense therefore to present the ‘ideal’ level of critical illness cover and then a second set of quotations which give varying levels of cover, from a low sum-assured up to higher sum-assureds.

    The client may change their initial budget based on the ‘ideal’ recommendation or if not, they can select a lower amount of cover to fit their budget on the basis that some cover is better than no cover.

    This approach obviously increases the uptake of Ci, rather than the lazy appoach of giving the client the simple ‘all or nothing’ choice when it comes to critical illness cover – “Mr Client – you can cover your Mortgage for Life Cover Only for £20 p/m or you can include the full amount of Critical Illness Cover for £80 p/m”.

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