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Neurological conditions and life insurance

Getting life insurance to protect your family is extremely important for any parent or family member. There are over 600 different types of neurological conditions and most are able to get life cover.

According to a recent study by the Neurological Alliance (Neuro Numbers 2019), 1 in 6 people in the UK have a neurological condition. Some of the other figures from the report include:

  • Over 1.6 million hospital admissions (with a mention of neurological conditions) in 2016/17. Nearly a 25% increase through the 5 years running to 2016/17.
  • Just over 1 million admissions to A&E in 2016/17 which is 21% higher than the 5 years previous.
  • NHS recorded a spend of £3.3 billion in 2012/13 for treatment of neurological conditions and neurological services.

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More about neurological conditions life insurance

Here are some of the most common questions and useful information by our experts about life insurance for neurological conditions.

Are neurological conditions covered by life insurance?

YES – if you die from any neurological condition then you’ll usually find that this will be covered on any existing life insurance policy.

Standard life cover does not exclude pre-existing medical conditions so you will be covered if anything happens. Most neurological conditions are not considered to be life-threatening, however, some can cause fatal complications.

Life insurance will pay out a cash lump sum to your family if you die from a neurological condition.

More about LIFE INSURANCE

Does critical illness cover payout for neurological conditions?

Each insurer has its own definitions of conditions they will pay out for with serious illness or critical illness cover.

You should always check your policy documents and terms & conditions for the definitions on your policy. As long as the condition is not pre-existing then you should also be able to claim on critical illness cover after diagnosis.

Some of the main neurological conditions covered by critical illness cover include:

  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Bacterial meningitis
  • Brain or spinal tumours
  • Brain injury
  • Coma
  • Craniotomy
  • Creutzfeldt-Jacob disease
  • Dementia
  • Encephalitis
  • Epilepsy
  • Guillain-barre syndrome
  • Motor neurone disease
  • Muscular sclerosis
  • Muscular dystrophy
  • Paralysis
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Stroke
  • Traumatic brain injury

A critical illness cover policy can provide vital financial support to you and your family if you’re diagnosed with a neurological condition. The kind of things that you can use a critical illness cover benefit are:

  • Mortgage payments or pay off your mortgage
  • Household bills
  • Debts
  • Adjustments to your home
  • Medical expenses
  • School fees

More about CRITICAL ILLNESS COVER

Does income protection payout for neurological conditions?

YES – if you’re off work for a period of time then your existing income protection cover should payout. This type of cover will help to substitute your income while you are unable to work due to your health.

There are lots of different options for income protection for neurological conditions to suit your needs. You should always make sure that you speak to an advisor if you’re not sure about what is best for you.

If you’re diagnosed with a neurological condition and you have income protection insurance then you can use the benefit for any purpose. Most income protection policies will payout 60% of your gross monthly income for 12 or 24 months.

For someone diagnosed with a neurological condition, it can be important to not have to work for a period of time, or change occupation.

Once your doctor has signed you off work then you’ll be able to claim shortly after this, depending on your cover.

More about INCOME PROTECTION

More about life insurance for people with neurological conditions

It is often possible and sometimes fairly simple to get life insurance with neurological conditions.

Can I get life insurance with a neurological condition?

YES – there should be several options available to most people diagnosed with neurological conditions. Life insurance is the best way to protect your family financially if you die, and will not usually exclude anything pre-existing.

Most people think that life cover isn’t available with neurological conditions, or that it will be unaffordable.

The reality is that many insurers will consider cover for most types of neurological conditions. Premiums can vary from one insurer to another so you just need to know which is best for you.

Some insurance experts will be able to guide you towards the best insurer and advise you on how to keep your premiums low.

You might also be able to reduce your premiums in the future if your condition improves or as underwriting changes. You should regularly review your cover to make sure that it suits your needs and that you’re paying the right amount.

Do neurological conditions affect life insurance?

NO – you’ll get the same policy and cover with a neurological condition as you would with no medical conditions.

Life insurance does not exclude pre-existing medical conditions apart from suicide in the first 12 or 24 months. This means that when you accept a new policy, you’ll be covered for any existing conditions and any new health problems.

Will I need a medical for neurological life insurance?

It is normal for an insurance company or provider to request some form of medical evidence when assessing an application for life insurance. This is especially true for applications where there are medical disclosures or if you are applying for high sums assured (high-value policies).

If your insurance company requests a medical report then it will usually be either a GP report or a nurse screening. Each of these is usually simple and will require very little effort from you, and no cost to you.

Common neurological conditions A to Z

Here is a list of the most common neurological conditions and details for how life insurance, critical illness cover, and income protection can be found on each page.

A

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)

Alzheimer’s disease

Aneurysm

B

Back pain

Bell’s palsy

Birth defects of the brain and spinal cord

Brain injury

Brain tumour

C

Cerebral palsy

Chronic fatigue syndrome

Concussion

D

Dementia

Disk disease of neck and lower back

Dizziness

E

Epilepsy

G

Guillain-Barré syndrome

H

Headaches and migraines

M

Multiple sclerosis

Muscular dystrophy

N

Neuralgia

Neuropathy

Neuromuscular and related diseases

P

Parkinson’s disease

Psychiatric conditions (severe depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder)

S

Scoliosis

Seizures

Spinal cord injury

Spinal deformity and disorders

Spine tumour

Stroke

V

Vertigo

Common questions about neurological conditions

Here are some of the main questions that people ask about neurological conditions and living with these types of conditions.

What are the most common neurological conditions?

A neurological condition is also known as a ‘disorder of the brain, spine, and nervous system. These affect millions of people every year and many go undiagnosed due to symptoms. The most common of these include:

  • Headaches
  • Stroke
  • Seizures
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Dementia
  • Multiple sclerosis

What are the signs and symptoms of neurological conditions?

Some of the most common signs or symptoms are some of the most common that can be identified in different people. These can occur in different forms depending on the individual and severity.

  • Persistent headaches or varied headaches
  • Numbness or tingling
  • Blurred or double vision
  • Loss of memory
  • Seizures or tremours
  • Slurred speech
  • Mental capacity reduced
  • Loss of balance
  • Muscles locking
  • Strength and stamina levels drop

Can you die from neurological disorders?

A global study in 2015 showed that neurological disorders were the cause of 9.4 million deaths, making this the second-highest cause of mortality. The increase from 1990 to 2015 was 36.7 percent and is now behind cardiovascular disease which is the leading cause.

Useful resources for neurological conditions

Here are some of the most useful resources we could find for people living with neurological conditions or for more information about them.

NHS England – Neurological conditions

Link: https://www.england.nhs.uk/ourwork/clinical-policy/ltc/our-work-on-long-term-conditions/neurological/

NICE (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) – Neurological conditions

Link: https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/conditions-and-diseases/neurological-conditions

Neurological Alliance – Charity

Link: https://www.neural.org.uk/