Apologies for the somewhat salubrious title, but I do need to get your attention.
There are two closely related matters that I would ask you to consider, very carefully.
The first is that, according to the Office of National Statistics (Living Costs and Food Survey 2010), the last year for which these statistics are available, of UK Households, only:
- 11% had Medical Insurance
- 15% had Mortgage Protection Insurance
- 2% had Fixed Term Life Assurance
- and income Protection policies were held by 31% fewer than in 2009
It seems evident that most people either have no insurance or are under-insured and this is at a time when the economy is uncertain, at best. Now, more than ever, it is essential to have appropriate insurance to your needs.
And this brings me to the next point.
If you have adequate and cost-effective long-term insurance policies in place and have no need or desire to add to or increase your cover, you will probably be unaffected by the changes that are coming. As stated above, though, you will probably be in a very small minority.
Time is about to run out if you are thinking about changing or increasing your insurance cover because premium rates are soon due to increase.
As I pointed out in my newsletter of 5th April 2012, a European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruling issued last year, commonly known as Test Achats was that it was illegal for insurance companies to charge different premiums for men and for women. From 21st December 2012, gender discrimination will be banned.
This applies to ALL forms of insurance.
Currently and with all other things being equal, life insurance costs less for women than it does for men and critical illness insurance costs less for men than it does for women.
From 21st December this will change and there will be only one, age-related premium, irrespective of gender. You can be sure that rates will NOT go down and it is predicted that life insurance for women will cost 11-15% more with similar increases for critical illness cover for men.
Secondly and as of 1st January 2013, the tax treatment of life insurance policies is also due to change. This is predicted to add about 10% to the premiums.
You can do something about this but only if you act now. Provided that the policies are in place before December, we may be able to 'lock-in' the premiums before they increase.
It can take up to 3 months for a policy to be put in place, expecially if medical questionnaires are required so, if you are contemplating a review of your protection cover, please contact us now