Insurers are pulling unemployment insurance because of the coronavirus outbreak — and some are looking for ways not to pay if you get sick
- Insurance companies are withdrawing from the unemployment insurance market as the coronavirus spreads
- Income protection insurers plan to introduce coronavirus exclusions
- This means that new policyholders will not receive compensation if they contract the virus
- Here’s how to help people affected by Covid-19
Insurance companies have begun pulling unemployment insurance products in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.
Meanwhile, others have begun adding exclusions to their Income Protection Insurance, which would exclude payments for those who have contracted the virus.
Income protection is a type of insurance designed to pay you a regular income if you cannot earn the income due to illness or injury. Most policies are designed to keep paying until you retire or become fit enough to return to work.
But insurance companies have already begun to exclude coronavirus from this type of coverage as the pandemic continues to accelerate.
Income protection insurers are introducing exceptions to new policies so they don’t have to pay if the policyholder can’t work after contracting the coronavirus (Stock Image)
This means they won’t have to pay if their policyholders get sick and are unable to work because of the virus – but existing policyholders won’t be affected.
In response, price comparison sites have already stopped listing this type of insurance.
“Due to the coronavirus outbreak, some income protection insurance providers have decided to stop offering insurance or review the basis on which they will offer it, with the potential for coronavirus,” said Anna McEntee, director of insurance at Market Comparison. Exceptions will be made.
In order to protect our customers, we have therefore decided to temporarily stop providing income protection quotes via our website during this period of uncertainty.
If you are a new insurance customer
In light of the insurance company’s response to the outbreak, it is important to check the policy wording on any new insurance policy you issue.
In many cases, coronavirus will not be explicitly excluded so as not to be covered.
If you have any doubts, ask your broker or insurance company what you actually cover.
We will resume the income protection comparison once we are certain that the prices offered will meet the needs and expectations of our clients.
We will be informed by government advice and will continue to work closely with our insurance partners on this matter. Other life insurance products were not affected.
This is Money has also received reports that insurance companies have begun pulling home mortgage payment protection insurance.
This type of coverage is supposed to protect you if you are unable to pay the mortgage due to illness or recurrence.
Insurance companies have come under fire in recent days after it was revealed that most companies would not be covered by their insurance if the government ordered them to close.
What are the different types of protection insurance and will it pay?
The main protection insurance policies that people take out tend to be life insurance, critical illness coverage, and income protection.
When it comes to income protection, existing policyholders will need to check with their provider to see if they will be covered in the event they are unable to work due to the coronavirus.
However, the Association of British Insurers said the majority of policies will not pay out to those who are self-isolating.
For example, if someone in your household is sick and you follow government advice by self-isolating, your policy won’t cover protection.
If you are on a new policy, it is now less likely that you will be covered if you become ill with coronavirus.
Critical illness coverage provides reimbursement for a specific disease diagnosis. If you have a serious illness policy, it is unlikely that it will cover the coronavirus. Again, check the wording on your policy or ask your insurance company if you need clarification.
Life insurance pays out when you die. There are a few different types—the term level of insurance, which offers set payments for a set period of time, declining term insurance, which covers you with a decreasing amount for a set period of time, and whole life coverage, which Pays a set amount when you die.
Life insurance will not be paid automatically – a claim must be filed by the policyholder’s dependents once they pass away.
In the unlikely event that the policyholder dies from the coronavirus, insurers such as Zurich said it is more likely that they will pay out.