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Which? cautions consumers on supermarket life cover

Which? has branded life insurance products from Tesco and Virgin Money “at best average and at worst dist- inctly bad value”.

The consumer lobbyist warns that supermarkets and other non-traditional insurance providers are not necessarily offering a good deal on personal finance products.

Which? examined life insurance products from Sainsbury, Asda, Marks and Spencer, Tesco and Virgin Money based on the cost of premiums and found that Sainsbury was the cheapest of all the companies.

But the report says it was less impressed by Tesco and Virgin Money and warned consumers that if they buy life insurance from super- markets, they will not get advice and will not have rec-ourse to the Financial Ombudsman Service if the policy proves to be unsuitable.

Which? says life insurance is one area where the consumer can get a good deal but they must not assume that shops offering good value on groceries will also offer a good deal on per- sonal finance.

Lifesearch head of protection strategy Kevin Carr says: “We agree with many of Which’s comments on life insurance. However, it is what it did not say that we disagree with.

“Price is always an important part of value but other important issues such as trusts, family income ben- efit, underwriting, pension term assurance, indexation and single life cover are considerations for all consumers buying life insur- ance and should not be dismissed. If an adviser ign- ored these issues, they could be accused of not treating their customers fairly.”

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