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Zurich protection gives LTC a Cic-start

Zurich Life has designed a cafeteria-style protection policy that includes long-term care, life assurance and critical illness cover.

There are five levels of cover ranging from standard cover, where the type of cover and premiums stay the same, to select cover term, where the highest level of cover is provided for a set period of up to 30 years and then reduces after this period.

Clients can mix and match the levels of cover with the protection options to suit their needs. The life assurance option pays a lump sum if policyholders die and the critical illness cover does the same thing where they are diagnosed with one of 26 conditions.

The pick and mix approach is becoming a well-trodden path, but Zurich Life stands out because of its long-term care element, called care support.

Care support covers policyholders for permanent total disability and private nursing costs. It pays out benefits during a 10-year period if policyholders are mentally impaired after age 65 or cannot perform three out of the six activities of daily living. These are washing, dressing, mobility, feeding, continence and transferring, for example, from a bed to a chair.

The long-term care market has been stagnant for some time and menu-style products could boost its profile. However, the care support option of this product only pays out benefits for 10 years, whereas full LTC plans from companies such as Bupa pay benefits for life.

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