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Trust in protection providers low, research finds

A majority of people underestimate how many protection claims are paid in the UK, underscoring the low confidence in the sector.

New Aegon research shows 92 per cent of people believe the UK protection industry pays out less than 90 per cent of protection claims each year.

This means just 8 per cent of respondents think the sector paid more than 90 per cent of claims.

Aegon says this is “disturbingly low” as the Association of British Insurers reports 97.8 per cent of claims made across group and individual protection in the UK were paid in 2017.

Respondents identified the two most common reasons claims are not paid correctly as providing inaccurate information about themselves on applications and claiming for something not included in the policy.

However the third most common reason respondents cite for a claim being declined is the belief insurance companies find loopholes so they do not have to pay them.

Aegon underwriting and claims head Simon Jacobs says: “The fact that only 8 per cent of people believe that we pay more than 90 per cent of claims is concerning and shows that the message we do pay all valid protection claims is failing to reach people.”

He adds: “The reality is that contentious claims are few and far between. Just 2.2 per cent of all claims are not paid, and in the vast majority of cases, there is a very clear reason for this.”

The survey was conducted by Aegon with the Aegon UK consumer panel and looked at 1,300 adults aged 18 and above during August.

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  1. Perhaps participants in this survey should have been asked to cite the evidence on which their belief that less than 90% of claims are paid and then been presented with the actual data. Many years ago we tried to help a pair of clients claim on their CI policy and the insurer (SPI) was as obstructive beyond imagining. But a combination of regulatory pressure and bad press has largely consigned such practices to history.

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