Posted 20 Jul 2021

Life insurance and post-Covid rules updated

Many of the extra rules and restrictions for life insurance and income protection that were put in place due to Covid have now been removed.

This means that many people who were told that they simply could not get life cover since March 2020 may now be eligible. Some of the main medical conditions that were affected by the extra restrictions included:

Insurers have faced increasing pressures to remove many of their limits since the government began to relax its rules, plus the vaccination program.

People in the UK have now been offered an opportunity to ensure that they have proper life cover in place, regardless of any pre-existing conditions. Many people with moderate to severe symptoms of chronic conditions found themselves in limbo, unable to access proper life insurance.

For anyone who has applied for life insurance since March ’20 or prior to that and has not been able to get cover, it may now be worth reviewing that again.

Other issues that people have encountered through lockdown

Managing health and diet

Diet: many of us have simply not managed to maintain the same diet that we would have had prior to lockdown. It’s very easy in difficult circumstances to let your diet slip which could have other implications, especially for conditions such as diabetes.

Exercise: with gyms and sports facilities forced to close, it has become increasingly difficult to take regular exercise in the same way as before. There has also been a global shortage of home gym equipment meaning it became extremely difficult to keep fit.

GP support: most GP’s were simply unable to perform regular check-ups and reviews in the same way or frequency as before. Treatments were also affected by the pandemic meaning that most patients were unable to access the care that they would have had normally.

Medical care: many routine treatments would have been canceled or postponed through the pandemic, meaning that people’s health was affected. A big example of this was nearly 50,000 people with outstanding cancer treatment in June 2021.

What has changed in life insurance?

Some of the biggest rule changes that have happened in the past few weeks include:

BMI levels: some providers have now increased their BMI restrictions to be similar to what they were before Covid and are now a Maximum of 53 (pre-Covid was 55)

Blood sugar levels: these were reduced through Covid to approximately 8.9 with most insurers and are now back up to approximately 10.9 on some specialist products

Vaccinations: some insurers are now asking for double vaccinations where high-risk conditions are disclosed

For more information, you can contact any of our team of friendly life insurance experts on 0800 009 6559

How can I get cheaper life insurance after Covid?

It’s now possible to reduce your life insurance premiums by returning to your previous health regime or even better. It can be difficult to break some of the bad habits of the past 18 months, but that can be a key to getting the best cover.

In many cases, people who have suffered from health problems or mental illness through the pandemic, things can improve gradually.

Most of us can do the following:

  • Better diet
  • Take more regular exercise
  • Visit GP
  • Treatments
  • Medications

Most of these will have a positive impact on the amount that you might pay for life cover.

Does the vaccine affect life insurance premiums?

This is a major question and something that will no doubt evolve over the coming months or even years.

Currently, some insurers will ask if you have had a vaccination only if there is another associated condition that could be impacted. If you are seen to be a higher-risk individual then it might be relevant to your application.

We will be covering this in more detail in future blogs.

What if I haven’t seen my GP due to Covid?

If you’ve not been able to visit your GP through the pandemic then you might need to do so for a number of reasons:

  • Get up-to-date readings (e.g. blood sugar levels, blood pressure, etc.)
  • Update treatments
  • Mental health support
  • Reviews or investigations

If you do have outstanding investigations then that can be a reason for insurers to postpone life cover.

Also, if you haven’t had a reading for over 18 months for certain things then that can be an issue in some cases.

Daniel Sharpe-Szunko
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