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Guardian Life Insurance Reviews 2023

Guardian (or Guardian 1821) is relatively new UK insurance provider, but one with a lot to offer. Originally established over 200 years ago, the business closed in 2016 before being revived in 2018 with a brand new focus on innovative policies to protect UK families and homes.

About Guardian Life Insurance company

Guardian was first established back in 1821 (this is why their name is often styled as Guardian 1821). They initially began as a business offering life and fire insurance, known as Guardian Fire & Life. Their name was changed to Guardian Assurance in 1902, following an expansion to a wider range of insurance policies.

Following several buy outs and mergers, Guardian closed stopped accepting new business back in 2016. Gryphon Group Holdings bought the business in 2018, changing the name to Guardian 1821 (Guardian Financial Services).

This new version of Guardian focuses on providing a solid range of life insurance and critical illness policies – plus recently launched income protection policies.

Guardian 1821 awards

Guardian have worked hard since 2018 to develop a range of personal insurance products they are very proud of. Here are some of the industry awards Guardian 1821 have won over the last few years.

2023

LifeSearch Leading Product Innovation Award 2023

2022

Finance Planning Group – Protection Provider of the Year 2022

Protection Review Awards – Underwriting and Claims Award

Cover Excellence Awards – Outstanding Individual Life Insurance

Protection Guru Awards – Best Insurer for Protecting Clients With Families

Protection Guru Awards – Best Insurer for Protecting a Mortgaged Client

2021

Financial Adviser Service Awards – 5 Stars for Pensions & Protection

Protection Guru Awards – Best Insurer for Protecting Clients With Families

Protection Guru Awards – Best Insurer for Protecting a Mortgaged Client

Is Guardian life insurance good?

Guardian offers a range of additional benefits that can increase the value for money in your policy. This includes Guardian HALO which provides support services including bereavement counselling, estate planning and return to work support (income protection).

You will also have Guaranteed Insurability included with your life insurance policy as standard. This allows you to increase your cover amount with no further questions following major life events such as marriage or birth/adoption of a child.

Guardian life insurance policy summary

Type of CoverGuardian 1821 Term Life Insurance (Life Protection)
Cover optionsGuardian Family Life Insurance (Level term cover)
Guardian Mortgage Life Insurance (Decreasing term cover)
Increasing Life Insurance
Combined Life and Critical Illness Cover
Family Income Benefit
Cover optionsSingle life (individual life insurance)
Dual life (pays out twice, once for each policy holder)
Terminal illness benefitTerminal illness benefit is included with Guardian life and Guardian life and critical illness policies. This pays out if you are diagnosed with a medical condition with a life expectancy of 12 months or less.  

Guardian will also pay out on terminal illness benefit if you are diagnosed with one of the following conditions. This is regardless of life expectancy:  

Parkinson-Plus Syndromes
Motor Neurone Disease
Stage 4 Cancer (incurable)
Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease
Increasing life insurance option (Indexation)Your cover will increase in line with inflation to protect the value of your policy. Your cover amount will increase each year (up to a maximum of £20million across all policies held with Guardian).  

Your premiums will increase by inflation x 1.5. You can choose not to increase your cover when asked. If you decline an increase for 3 years in a row, your policy will be switched to level term cover.
Waiver of PremiumWaiver of premium is included FREE with Guardian life insurance. This pays your premiums for you if you cannot work, are made redundant or go on maternity/paternity leave. Pays out for 6 months maximum.
Term optionsMinimum term – 1 year (5 years for decreasing cover or Family Income Benefit)
Maximum term – 72 years Policy must end by age 90
Age limitsMinimum age at entry – 18 years
Maximum age at entry – 64 years
Maximum age at end of policy term – 90 years
Maximum benefit£15million
Exclusions (Life Insurance)Guardian does not include any exclusions on their life protection policies.

Learn more – Guardian Life Insurance Policy Information

Guardian critical illness insurance summary

Type of CoverGuardian 1821 Critical Illness Protection
Cover optionsGuardian Level Term Critical Illness Cover (family protection)
Guardian Decreasing Critical Illness Cover (mortgage protection)
Guardian Increasing Critical Illness Cover
Guardian Life Insurance and Critical Illness Cover
Family Income Benefit
Coverage optionsSingle life
Dual life (pays out twice, once for each policy holder)
Conditions covered (Core)Guardian critical illness insurance offers protection for diagnosis of 76 core conditions  

54 conditions = full payment (100% of the sum assured in your policy)
22 conditions = partial payment of between 10% – 25% of the cover amount (depends on the illness) or £50,000 (whichever is lowest).  
Surgery cover = pays out 25% of the sum assured in your policy or £50,000 (whichever is lowest). This will pay out if you are placed on a UK surgery waiting list.  
Children’s Critical Illness Cover (Core)Can be added to a full critical illness cover policy. Protects your children from birth to age 23.  
Pays out on the same basis as the conditions covered in the adult policy. Also protects against an additional 7 child specific conditions.  
Cover ends once a full policy pay out has been made, though funeral cover will remain in place.  
Includes funeral benefit worth £10,000 if the child covered dies between the 24th week of pregnancy and age 23.
Premium typeGuaranteed (fixed)
Variable (increasing)
Term optionsMinimum term – 5 years
Maximum term – 52 years
Maximum amount of cover – £3million (not available with increasing cover)
Age limitsMinimum age at entry – 18 years
Maximum age at entry – 64 years
Maximum age at end of policy term – 70 years
Exclusions (Critical Illness Cover)You must survive 14 days from diagnosis of the condition.
The condition you are claiming for must meet the terms and conditions stated in your policy.

Guardian income protection insurance

In early 2023, Guardian announced they would be launching their first range of income protection insurance products. They were keen to expand on their current policies, allowing them to offer a ‘full menu’ of insurance protection.

Guardian worked closely will insurance brokers to ensure this new income protection product would be well suited to the needs of UK residents. The new policies will cover up to 65% of your income, paying out if you cannot work due to illness or injury.

You can choose between:

  • Short term income protection: pays out for a maximum of 2 years
  • Long term income protection: pays out for the entire remaining policy term (if needed)

Learn more – Guardian launches income protection insurance

Guardian life insurance customer service

Getting in touch with Guardian is fairly simple, compared to the long lists of different contact numbers you find with many other providers. Here are the main ways you can contact Guardian 1821 about your policy.

There is an online form you can fill in, and an agent from Guardian 1821 will get back to you as soon as possible.

Guardian 1821 – Contact Form

Guardian life insurance phone number

Telephone – 0808 123 1821

Opening hours – Monday to Friday 9.00am – 5.00pm

Guardian life insurance email

You can send Guardian an email at:

Email –  heretohelp@guardian1821.co.uk

Guardian life insurance address

If you need to write to Guardian 1821, this the registered business address:

Galbraith House,

16 Blythswood Square,

Glasgow,

G2 4HJ

There can be times when you buy a policy, and you are unhappy with the product or service you have received. If this happens, you are always within your rights to submit a complaint.

Guardian life insurance complaints process

Guardian has a comprehensive complaint process in place, to try and resolve customer complaints as quickly and efficiently as possible. You should receive frequent communication regarding the status of your complaint and you will be given the name of the person dealing with your complaint.

If your complaint cannot be immediately resolved, Guardian aims to do so within 5 working days. If it will be longer, this will be explained to you (including the reasons why this is the case).

Complaints contact details

Telephone – 0808 123 1821

(Calls may be recorded for training purposes to improve future service)

Opening hours – Monday to Friday 9.00am – 5.00pm

Email –  heretohelp@guardian1821.co.uk

You can also submit your complaint via post at this address:

Guardian Customer Complaints,

Forbury Works,

37/43 Blagrave Street,

Reading,

RG1 1PZ

Financial ombudsman service

If you are unhappy with how Guardian has handled your complaint, you can go to the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) to take things further. The FOS is a helpful resource for UK financial services customers, as they resolve disputes between consumers and businesses.

If you feel misled or like you have lost money unfairly, the FOS may rule for you to receive compensation.

Telephone – 0800 023 4567 (or 0300 123 9123)

Telephone (outside the UK) – 0207 964 0500

Email – complaint.info@financial-ombudsman.org.uk

About Guardian life insurance claims

There may come a time you need to claim on a Guardian life insurance policy. Guardian understand this will be during an upsetting time and will do their best to make this process as smooth as possible.

How to make a claim with Guardian

Unlike other providers, there isn’t an online Guardian life insurance claims form. Instead you need to call and register to make a claim and all relevant details will be taken over the phone.

You are then emailed confirmation that your claim has been submitted, plus any relevant forms if any need to be signed. You should receive regular updates about the claim, as well as details of additional bereavement support offered by Guardian.

Guardian 1821 has officially signed up to the Protection Distributors Group Funeral Payment Pledge. This mean Guardian promises to pay up to £10,000 of every life insurance claim early, to help cover funeral costs.

Find out more – Guardian – How to make a claim

Before contacting Guardian claims team

Before submitting a life insurance claim, it can be useful to have certain basic details to hand in case you are asked. This includes:

  • The policyholder’s name and date of birth
  • Policy number (if known)
  • Death certificate (if possible)

Guardian claims contact information

To contact Guardian about a life insurance claim, you can call their usual customer service number for more information.

Telephone – 0808 123 1821

Opening hours – Monday to Friday 9.00am – 5.00pm

Guardian claims statistics

As Guardian 1821 is a newer insurance business, they do not publish full claims statistics yet. This is due to industry recommendations that comparisons cannot be fairly made with the rest of the market within the first 5 years.

Guardian has however posted the following information on their website:

2020

Amount paid out (life insurance claims): £816,549

Amount paid out (critical illness claims): £1,409,234

2021

Amount paid out (life insurance claims): £3,263,326

Amount paid out (critical illness claims): £2,813,910

2022

Amount paid out (life insurance claims): £3,741,736

Guardian life insurance benefits

Here are some of the benefits that can be access by Guardian insurance customers.

Terminal illness benefit is included at no additional cost with Guardian Life Insurance. This pays out if you are diagnosed with a medical condition with a life expectancy of 12 months or less. Guardian Terminal Illness Benefit also pays out if you are diagnosed with Stage 4 Cancer (incurable), Motor Neurone Disease, Parkinson-Plus Syndromes or Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (CJD).

FREE waiver of premium benefit is included with Guardian policies. Waiver of premium is normally charged as an extra add on with other insurers. This benefit pays your policy premiums for you if you cannot work, are made redundant or have a baby (for up to 6 months).

Guardian Anytime provides 24/7 remote GP access, treatment plans and second medical opinions. This is a form of extra support included free for Guardian customers.

Guardian HALO support service helps support yourself or your loved ones at the point of claim. This service can provide bereavement counselling, return to work support, estate planning and more.

Dual life insurance option allows you to cover yourself and your partner under one policy. This is different to standard joint life policies as you each receive separate benefits and it will pay out twice (once for each person). The remaining partner will still be covered under the policy after the first claim has paid out.

Guardian Mortgage Guarantee gives extra peace of mind to decreasing life insurance customers. If your amount of cover does not cover your outstanding mortgage balance if your cover amount matched your mortgage amount when you applied. This is to protect against inflation and rising interest rates.

How to cancel your Guardian life insurance policy

To cancel a Guardian 1821 life insurance policy, you can contact the Guardian team at heretohelp@guardian1821.co.uk. You notify them you wish to cancel your cover and then cancel your direct debit with your bank.

Your policy will end on the date your next monthly payment would have been due. Your cover will continue up until this point.

Guardian life insurance cancellation policy states you have 30 days to change your mind to receive a refund. Cancelling after this will mean you lose any money you have already paid for your policy.

How much is Guardian life insurance?

With any life insurance policy, you will want a rough idea of how much you could expect to pay. The cost of your cover can vary depending on several factors such as your age, smoker status and if you have medical conditions.

Below we have some example pricing, to show how Guardian compares to other UK insurance providers.

Compare Guardian life insurance – £200,000 for 25 years (non-smoker)

AgeGuardian premiumsLowest premiumsHighest premiums
30 year old (non-smoker)£7.72£7.22£12.94
40 year old (non-smoker)£14.75£13.43£20.62
50 year old (non-smoker)£37.89£34.32£46.48

*all quotes based on level term cover, for an applicant with no pre-existing conditions

Compare Guardian life insurance – £200,000 for 25 years (smoker)

AgeGuardian premiumsLowest premiumsHighest premiums
30 year old (smoker)£15.40£11.95£19.88
40 year old (smoker)£38.12£29.52£42.60
50 year old (smoker)£108.59£83.94£130.69

How to buy Guardian life insurance

The only way to compare Guardian life insurance quotes is to get help from an insurance expert. Guardian 1821 does not accept applications directly from customers, so you will need to apply via an advisor.

Our team of experts has worked with Guardian 1821 for years, and can help you compare the best quotes quickly and easily. As whole market brokers, we can also advise if we think another provider may be better and more affordable for the cover you need.

You can read Guardian 1821 life insurance reviews, critical illness reviews and customer testimonials on their website to judge their policies for yourself.

Guardian 1821 – Customer Stories

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