28Jan2020

The best life insurance for intrepid explorers?

What we mean is “the best life insurance for going on holidays?”

It is incredible the number of holiday advertisements appearing on our televisions the moment Christmas and New Year is over.

The advertising agencies know a person’s psyche that a holiday immediately after Christmas is what everyone needs, wants, and many of us are planning where to go right now. More than anything else, looking online at those warmer climates, luxury hotels, white sandy beaches and sparkling blue swimming pools. Perfect images to cheer us up during those mid-January blues.

Booking flights, hotels, packing a suitcase full to bursting. The lead up is the easy and fun part. Checking off the list of necessities; passport? check; boarding passes? check. How many of us forget the one crucial envelope marked “insurance”?

Check out the best life insurance policy before travelling

Ensuring your insurance policies are all in place, up to date, and valid is one of the most sensible, if not the most practical approach before travelling. We also need to take on board all the things that might go wrong, and falling ill or suffering an accident abroad is more common than people realise. Luckily, for most couples or families, one person in the group will possess the necessary insight to pack this essential item of holiday paraphernalia.

In light of the recent coronavirus outbreak, it is even more prudent to check the terms of your insurance policies. Determine which insurance package will cover you in the event of an emergency, and especially check for exclusion terms. Ask yourself the question “is my life insurance policy valid abroad?”

Travel and the best life insurance

Firstly, an explanation of what exactly is life insurance. Depending on what type of life insurance policy you have, the goal of life insurance is to ensure loved ones have financial security if the policyholder should pass away.

A life insurance policy will, among other things: payout a lump sum to help with the following:

  • ever-escalating funeral expenses
  • pay the remainder of the mortgage
  • pay off existing debts
  • provide day-to-day financial security

Scoot over to our previous blog explaining all the different types of life insurance policies that exist.

The best life insurance while on holiday

Checking your policy is vital before travelling. Most life insurance policies will cover you when travelling. Still, there may be some exclusions, especially when the globe is in the clutches of a viral epidemic or other gripping disaster or terrorist threat. Your life insurance policy may render invalid any claims made while travelling to any of the countries on a UK “exclusion list.”

Excluded countries may also render invalid any other insurance policies relied upon. For example, medical insurance, travel insurance for lost luggage, damaged items, plus various different types of claims commonly made under travel insurance policies.

Apart from avoiding countries with deadly pandemics and regular terrorist situations, certain activities taken while on holiday will need careful consideration.

For example, scuba diving, paragliding, skydiving, any extreme or hazardous pursuits while on holiday. These will most likely require separate policies to ensure full protection against accidents or death. You may already have this covered if you partake in dangerous sporting activities regularly and providing your insurance company is aware of this.

It never harms to get on the phone and double-check that you have the necessary cover for specific sporting activities when abroad. Especially if you plan to climb to the tip of a burning inferno, gallop camels across the desert or free dive with sharks! Even skiing has more than its fair share of risks. It may be that your insurer will want to check safety credentials and professional certification of the organisers involved. We cannot emphasise enough the importance of ensuring all your insurance policies are up to date, including life insurance for travelling abroad.

Have peace of mind knowing you are covered, and then you are good to go.

The UK Government, in light of previous terrorist attacks and the current coronavirus outbreak, urges holidaymakers to take specific precautions before travelling. For an up to date checklist and advice, visit their web page here.

Whatever your holiday plans are this year, there is a lot to consider, with viruses, terrorism, Brexit, etc. Any information about travelling is located on the Government link above, with regular updates.

We hope that your holiday will go smoothly, without incident. Staying away from sharks and volcanoes will help! Having appropriate travel insurance together with life insurance is a smart move. It will protect you and your loved ones in a worst-case scenario.

If you are young and fit and you do not have life insurance, now is the time to consider a policy while it is cheap to do so. If you are planning a holiday and don’t have life insurance contact a representative today to discuss getting covered and the benefits of life insurance while abroad.

Relax; enjoy your holiday without worrying, but remember – life insurance is not just for the holiday season, but also for the long term.

 

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16Jan2020

Biometrics for Best Life Insurance Products?

Does the Best Life Insurance need Smart Hats and Age Progression Algorithms?

In a rapidly evolving environment of data-driven technologies, we start to wonder how life insurance needs to change to keep up in terms of digital technology for this sector. Already, the best life insurance companies are using technology to harvest useful, high-quality data, essential for research and development.

Data collection and machine learning go a long way to helping the life insurance industry gain meaningful insights into customer habits, especially in terms of health and lifestyle. The best life insurance companies can then go onto develop customised products and services and improve overall customer satisfaction from policy inception to claim stage.

Certainly, biometrics, artificial intelligence and algorithms go into new products, including those products which track lifestyles and health data and provide recommendations to reduce risks to certain illnesses and diseases.  

Research and Development to Create the Best Life Insurance Policies

Emerging insurance tech start-ups put forward some promising scientific research and ideas to future improve clients’ health and wellbeing and, ultimately, maintain affordable premiums.  This momentum for future generation technology is speeding.  Soon there will be options to personalise life and health products using digital solutions, in turn providing improved products and value for money.

Innovative products developed from algorithms that harness the power of big data and enables a new era of efficiency with the handling of risk assessment and claims processing. This type of technology improves the diagnosing of illness, in turn, reducing the requirement for invasive medical examinations and provides accurate premium values, speedy processes and fraud prevention.

Let us look at some of these exciting products that will revolutionise the life insurance market and provide better access for people who might otherwise be refused or expected to pay higher premiums.

Will our Fitness Gadgets Pave the Way to Cheap Life Insurance Premiums?

Head to toe, preventative and wearable tech is sweeping the world with its innovative products. A complete outfit, from smart hats, fitness-tracking underwear, stylish smartwatches and Fitbits, smart anklets and calorie counting trainers. While these items lean more towards an arranged marriage between fitness and fashion, tech companies across the globe are producing innovative features specifically for the health market.

An exciting Paris based health Tech Company, Chronolife is leading the way in disruptive technology specifically for healthcare patients and practitioners. Their most recent and groundbreaking invention is a smart, washable t-shirt cutely named Nexkin. The t-shirt comprises ten biometric scanners to continuously monitor and record heart rate and rhythm, breathing, body temperature and level of physical activity. The t-shirt works alongside the user’s smartphone, and the data transmitted via Bluetooth enables accurate health alerts and insights. 

Simply breathtaking in terms of medical advancement.  This type of innovation combined with future technologies, for example, the rolling out of 5G, will mean an awful lot in terms of remote health care, surgical operations and emergency treatments.  

Without doubt, wearable tech is a welcome addition to the insurance industry, whether it is to improve general health and fitness or detect early signs of high blood pressure, heart attacks or strokes. Big data is driving innovation, but it remains a contentious privacy issue, with many people against the collection of data to sell products. The future of improved life insurance products depends on people readily opting into the sharing of their data to enable faster application processing, claim handling and cheaper premiums.

Emerging technologies may sound a little too science fiction rather than useful tools for life insurance. One example is a biometric age assessment tool, currently in development, using facial analytical software to determine when a person might die! We are not sure exactly how life insurance companies will adopt this type of artificial intelligence and biometric health screening because the adage “ignorance is bliss” applies equally to customers and product providers! 

Contact us today to experience a relatively non-tech, normal process towards competitive life insurance quotes.

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19Dec2019

All I want for Christmas is a life insurance policy

(and maybe a DNA testing kit)

Following on with our series on  what are the best life insurance products, we thought that, as it is coming up to Christmas, rather than examine a specific life insurance policy or product, we wanted to indulge in some fun facts and interesting trivia surrounding the life insurance market.

Furthermore, today’s feature blog stands out as our Christmas special. As the team starts looking forward to a well-earned Christmas break, regardless of creed or ideology, the holiday is a time to relax and be with a family or use the time to indulge in hobbies or other pursuits. 

Christmas gifts that might affect your life insurance premiums

Kicking off with an interesting topic, we look at the current trend of DNA testing across the world, where you simply spit on a stick, send this off to one of the numerous DNA testing organisations cropping up everywhere, and find out all sorts of interesting information. With the science of genotyping, be prepared to learn a great deal regarding your heritage, ancestry and, not just the family tree, but also (and perhaps worryingly) any predispositions you may have to health-related illnesses.  We have it on good authority that a DNA testing kit makes for a modern and quite interesting Christmas gift!  But how does this affect life insurance?

Good to know? Is there a history in your family of inherited diseases

How would you feel if one of these kits appeared in your Christmas stocking? On the one hand, it may be argued that having access to certain health predispositions helps us greatly with making good choices regarding diet, thus enabling preventative care to avoid increased chances of developing certain family-related cancers, heart conditions or mental health tendencies. We are talking about diseases that literally run in the family. According to the American DNA testing company Genetic Concept they can provide a list of over 100 health issues. While not every illness will apply to you, maybe it would be good to know if you are inclined towards heart attacks, diabetes or Parkinson’s disease. 

Did you even know you were allergic to whatever?

Furthermore, additional services include disclosure of allergies, picked up from your DNA. They will recommend how to improve your lifestyle to mitigate potential illnesses caused by such allergies. Diet, for example, plays a huge role in our health. The benefit of DNA testing for health reasons can identify those devious food groups that cause problems.  For many sufferers, having the knowledge to eliminate foods causing problems, for example, dairy, legumes or eggs, is invaluable.

Health, Life Insurance and Critical Illness – make good choices

Conversely, for many people, ignorance is bliss, and not knowing that you might die in a couple of years is preferable to recognising the truth about one’s health! On the other hand, awareness allows us to improve our health and well-being. Awareness allows us to increase our resistance to disease by adapting better lifestyle choices; taking preventative action and avoiding as much as possible any risks that may hasten pre-existing health issues. 

Sharing the test results is not necessary

Have you wondered how the sudden awareness of any health-related results affect life insurance, critical illness and health insurance premiums? Do you have to disclose a sudden awareness surrounding your health? The fact that you have found out about these worrying propensities to family-related diseases, allergies or existing illnesses, does this, in turn, require you to report the findings to your insurance company?

Actually, no you do not have to do that.

Not now nor in the future.

This is due to the UK Government Code that dictates to all insurers in the UK – thanks to this code, insurance companies are not to put existing or future applicants under any pressure to a) subject themselves to any genetic testing and b) disclose any results obtained from a DNA organisation.

This code is succinct in its direction and the Government publication is available to view here. There is one disease that falls outside of the Code, and that is Huntingdon’s Disease and where cover is required over £500,000, but only if the insurance company ask for this information. For more information on Huntingdon’s disease and DNA testing take a look at this publication from the Association of British Insurers.

The best life insurance policy is not subject to a DNA health test

In summary, our article today focuses on the advantages of DNA testing, i.e. to discover more about our background, heritage and the mix of health related issues that we might not be aware of.  One thing is sure, we do not have to worry how the results might affect our insurance premiums. 

While many of us prefer not to know what the future has in store for us in terms of health issues, some of us, especially those of us with a history of family health-related problems, may wish to determine what our chances are of contracting these diseases, and how we can go about mitigating any possibility of falling ill. Hopefully, we can beat them into submission before they have a chance to creep upon us. 

Most importantly, we are not obliged to share any information gleaned from DNA testing with our insurance companies, now or in the future.

Happy holidays to all of our customers and we look forward to bringing you more interesting life insurance facts and trivia in 2020!

 

 

 

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13Dec2019

Do I need critical Illness cover?

Over the past few weeks, we have looked at the various types of life insurance policies available and what life insurance is the best for people – taking into consideration various factors, such as, joint life insurance, decreasing life insurance, fixed term life insurance. There are so many life insurance policies to choose from, we felt it important to highlight the most common types.

Is critical illness important, can I just rely on life insurance?

Part four in our life insurance series, we look not at life insurance but rather a bolt-on for added protection.  Today’s blog is looking at specifically critical illness cover. Critical illness as a financial investment evades many people as it is often misunderstood or overlooked as an important element of family finances. We receive many questions at the Life Insurance Cover office so the team has put together a few pointers for customers, examining how they can combine this cover with life insurance to provide crucial financial assistance when the worst scenario happens.

Many people make the sound financial choice of life insurance, ensuring that their loved ones remain financially protected in the event of their passing away. We already talked about the differing types of life insurance policies here so today is all about that frequently asked question: “should I have critical illness cover?”

Most people understand that life insurance protects our loved ones should we die. Most importantly, life insurance provides a cleared mortgage, perhaps a lump sum factored into future proof living costs; household bills, shopping, childcare and college funds.

Life insurance combined with critical illness gives strong protection

We talked about “illness denial” in an earlier blog. It is perhaps an anomaly to plan our finances beyond our death, but not plan for a situation where illness takes us out of the workplace and into our sick beds, perhaps for a long period and often a scenario more common than one of us dying. What happens to our finances when we are too sick to work?

This is where critical illness cover comes into its own. A critical illness policy provides cover for a list of different illnesses ranging from various types of cancer to dementia.

With more and more people becoming self-employed, statistics show that 1 in 5 aims to become self-employed in the future and women are a growing statistic in this scenario, it is extremely important to consider a bolt-on such as critical illness protection existing life insurance policies.

How does critical illness cover work?

Critical illness insurance pays out a lump sum on diagnosis of a wide expanse of illnesses and conditions enabling the insured to sustain their living expenses and outgoing finances while off work. Policies can cover everything from suffering a stroke to a broken wrist.  Basically, anything that will keep you off work for a lengthy period.

Illnesses typically include serious cancers such as prostate cancer, cancers of the bowel, colon and rectum, these being among the most common critical illness claims suffered by the male population. Other critical illness claims include heart attack and organ failure, multiple sclerosis, loss of vision/hearing, loss of limbs, stroke, plus many more. It is very important to check potential new policy documents to make sure you are fully aware of the list of illnesses, and any exclusions.

Advantages of critical illness cover

In the same concept that life insurance protects our loved ones if we die, having critical illness cover in place protects the family from a financial crisis should the main breadwinner be off sick for a prolonged period. Illness and injury are likely to occur more so than death, so planning for the unexpected is more than a good idea, it is providing peace of mind for the policyholder, not only financially but with added support, allowing him or her to concentrate on getting well and back to work again.  Many insurers provide automatically extra benefits when a policy is taken out, including support services and automatic critical illness for any children of the family, applicable from birth.  Check out the range of insurers that offer these extras and more, by calling one of our team today.

How much is critical illness cover?

Many people think critical illness cover is expensive, but it need not be. With a range of policies and providers, allowing customers to scour the market and compare prices for critical illness policies, the offerings are immense and there is a policy to suit every person and budget. Getting covered early, before the life-changing events such as buying a house, getting married, having a child, will drive those premiums down even lower.

The conclusion is that nobody needs to go without critical illness cover and the risks that people face of becoming ill and unable to get to work confirm the crucial requirements of cover.

Speak to an adviser today to find out more about how a critical illness policy can offer peace of mind and support for you and your family.

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29Nov2019

Part Three – Whole of Life Insurance Cover

In our previous two weeks, we have discussed various options of life insurance, including fixed term, decreasing term and joint life policies. These are policies that last for a length of time suitable to the policyholder, for example, to cover the duration of a mortgage, or longer to provide help with university fees or other such financial obligations. In any event, many people find the excess of available policies confusing. They may not have the right policy for their particular circumstances. 

Who needs a whole of life insurance cover?

In today’s part three of our five-part series, we can look at a rather obscure life insurance policy. A whole of life is a policy that will only suit a small portion of the population due to its peculiarities. 

What does a whole of life insurance policy entail? 

A whole of live policy covers an individual for the whole of their life, with a guaranteed payout upon death, albeit at 20 years of age or 120 years of age!

A whole of life insurance policy is life insurance in its purest, most authentic sense. It is a policy that will not expire in the same respect of that of the more popular and general fixed or decreasing term insurance.

For wealthy individuals, in particular, a whole of life policy has a great many financial advantages. For example, it has an option for index linking in line with inflation, and extra security to cover any inheritance tax liability sure to fall due when you die. 

What is the best whole of life insurance policy?

Whole of life has some advantages and, as described above, is popular for individuals who preside over large estates. Another scenario where a whole of life policy is required is in business, also known as key man (or key person.) It covers business partners by companies who would struggle without a “key person”. In the case of key person insurance, there are options to fix the term and to offer a whole of life policy. In any event, it is separate from personal life insurance. It is a way to prevent spouses from having to deal with the business upon the death of the businessperson. Ultimately, the policy is owned and paid for by the company. The insurance allows the company to purchase the deceased person’s shares as well as cover any income lost to the company in the event of the death of the key person.

Are there any advantages of a whole of life insurance policy?

Regardless of the reasons for requiring a whole of life policy, the monthly premiums are costly, and with an abundance of investment options on the market today, are less popular than they were in the 1980s when there was a range of index-linked options to invest funds in the form of monthly premiums and cash in for lump sums. Those policies taken out in the 1980s may be unsustainable today, especially if the policy is one of the many that become subject to reviews. Those subject to reviews when the policyholder reaches 60, for example, may see premiums double. Failure to keep up with premiums, of course, will void the insurance. Today, many policyholders who thought a whole of life policy a good idea back in the 1980s are finding themselves in a difficult situation. Many face unaffordable premiums at a time where a new life insurance policy is unattainable due to age or ill-health.

Other factors that have led to their unpopularity is the range of alternative life insurance options including over 50s and funeral plans. Hence, when a reasonably priced life insurance policy comes to a natural end, there are several alternatives for seniors. Many policies offer competitive prices, allowing individuals to plan for financial security for loved ones. Such plans ensure that loved ones can manage crippling funeral costs with a well-put-together funeral plan. An over 50s policy is a lovely way to bequeath a financial gift as a welcome inheritance, and a pleasant surprise, and goes a long way to ease the burden of losing a loved one.

Get professional advice on what is the best insurance policy for you

Whichever insurance policy you are thinking about, be it whole of life, over 50s, or a funeral plan, speak to a professional advisor today. Get advice on how to find out which policy will suit your circumstances. If you are concerned about inheritance tax, make sure you get professional information about putting your policy into a trust. Our advisors can guide you on this, avoiding probate and ensuring your dependants have a stress free access to finances and avoiding inheritance tax.

Click on the link below to speak to one of our expert advisors, and tune in next week for part four where we will discuss in greater depth policies for over 50s and funeral plans.

 

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22Nov2019

Part two – What is a joint life insurance policy?

Part two of our five-part series, coming to you from our regular blogger Tracy Morgan, who today explains the benefits and disadvantages of joint life insurance policies.

Why should I consider joint life insurance?

Tightening the financial household belt may often be to the detriment of life insurance cover. We discussed previously the phenomenon of “illness denial” where people bury their heads in the sand and hope that serious, life-threatening illnesses will avoid them. However, when the worst-case scenario does occur, a partner or spouse will most certainly be devastated, both financially and emotionally. Taking out life insurance will protect those you love in such awful circumstances, giving you and your dependants some level of financial security if you were to pass away.

Is joint life insurance cheaper than single life insurance?

A joint policy is one affordable option to consider when, financially, life insurance appears an unwanted expense. A joint policy covers two people under one life insurance policy, but its cheapness reflects a few issues that policyholders need to bear in mind. 

Looking at specific requirements as a couple will help determine if a joint life insurance policy works well for you. 

Circumstances in which a joint policy works well is when both partners are working, contributing an income into the household. If one partner were to die, the loss of their income would have a devastating effect on household finances. The benefits of a joint policy outweigh not having a policy at all. Consider the following:

  • A joint policy pays out irrespective of which partner dies
  • With only one regular payment, it is often a cheaper option than paying for two separate policies, hence a more viable option in financial difficulties
  • Provides peace of mind, and is an excellent solution for a couple with no children, and irrespective of marital status, but who have perhaps a joint mortgage, other debts and overheads to worry about
  • Regardless of whether both parties are working, a joint policy provides cover for stay at home parents, covering those crucial but expensive childcare costs should the primary child carer pass away

The disadvantages need consideration before embarking upon a joint policy:

  • A joint policy, although states the word “joint” will only payout on the first death, leaving a surviving dependant uninsured and possibly in difficulty to get a new policy
  • If you and your partner go through a separation or divorce, the policy is indivisible
  • If one partner stops paying monthly premiums, the policy will lapse, leaving both parties without insurance. If the split is amicable, one or both parties can renegotiate the terms of the cover.

What is the difference between joint life insurance and single life insurance?

To sum up, the only benefit to taking out a joint policy is financial. It is marginally cheaper than two single policies, but in the long term may not benefit both parties in the event of a death or if the parties separate.

The best advice is to examine both options, joint and single life insurance. If you are young, in good health and a non-smoker, your single life insurance policy may actually work out cheaper in the end and provide a great deal more flexibility and independence for each partner. 

We are here to help with any enquiry regarding life insurance, be it joint, single, decreasing or fixed term. Simply click on the button and receive expert advice today.

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15Nov2019

Types of Life Insurance Series – Term Life Insurance

First of our three-part series on different types of life insurance. Every Friday for the next five weeks we will cover, in-depth, various types of life insurance policies.

Are you confused about the variety of options surrounding life insurance? Relax; we are here to explain each aspect of life insurance in detail so that you can decide which type of life insurance policy is best for you.

Let’s kick this off, starting with term insurance.

This is possibly the most common type of life insurance policy that young adults take out. The policy runs for a specific time of an insured person’s life, usually 25 years in line with a mortgage term.

When we think about it, this is the time that many adults would be most vulnerable if their partner were to pass away. Specifically, the time in life, when a young couple gets married, buys a home and has children. If one partner unexpectedly dies, due to illness or an accident, the financial situation would be extremely worrying. Suddenly alone with children, an abrupt drop in income impacts on the following:

  • monthly mortgage repayments
  • regular household bills
  • expensive child-care
  • weekly shopping
  • savings

Different life insurance policies can provide protection for loved ones

All of the things that we manage as a couple and take for granted suddenly become an enormous burden to bear financially.

Taking out term insurance policy provides comfort and peace of mind in such sad circumstances. Term life insurance certainly eases the financial burden for loved ones struggling with the loss of a partner or parent. At the very least, the mortgage is taken care of and, at most, a lump sum to help with the day to day living expenses. Thus allowing the surviving partner to continue to live without any financial hardship, ensuring the children are cared for until they are old enough to fend for themselves.

Due to the cost-effectiveness and practicalities of term insurance, it is by far a more conventional policy for many young couples. Moreover, it provides a level of flexibility and is customisable to fit particular circumstances or preferences.

We can break down term insurance into two categories:

Level term – The policy term is for a fixed time, and the monthly premiums are the same until the policy ends. Nothing changes; the cover and payout in the event of a claim remain fixed throughout the term of the policy. This type of life insurance policy is particularly advantageous for couples who have an interest-only mortgage and children. Providing extra cover, beyond the mortgage term, gives extra financial stability if one parent passes away.

Decreasing term – In line with a mortgage or other debt, the term and premium remains fixed. Still, the payout in the event of death reduces each month (usually in line with a repayment mortgage). Because this type of insurance only covers a repayment mortgage debit, the premiums are far cheaper. Therefore, it is very popular with professional couples with no children.

Life insurance protects the family home

There is no doubt that a mortgage is, by far, the most substantial debt most couples will incur. Protecting the family home undoubtedly the most critical factor for any couple with children. It is extremely wise, while couples are young, to consider insurance as a crucial financial investment.

With life insurance, whether it is a fixed term of decreasing term provides peace of mind, reduces any financial risks to surviving spouses and dependents. Taking out life insurance when you are young will impact significantly on premiums. Especially if you are young, do not smoke, are in good health and do not partake in risky activities.

Different life insurance to cover every eventuality

Like anything in life; car insurance, contents insurance, buildings insurance, then chances are nothing will happen to induce a claim. However, when something does happen, the relief that insurance brings far outweighs the costs of those premiums. Insurance is sound financial planning.

Tune in next Friday where we will look at the benefits and drawbacks of joint insurance policies.

In the meantime you can speak to one of our extremely friendly and helpful FSA regulated advisors, simply click and fill in the form.

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29Oct2019

Plan your life insurance in advance like a war hero

Sir Winston Churchill was a firm proponent of life insurance.

He stated:

“If I had my way, I would write the word ‘insure’ upon the door of every cottage and upon the blotting book of every public man, because I am convinced, for sacrifices so small, families and estates can be protected against catastrophes which would otherwise smash them up forever.”

Sir Winston had his very own life insurance policy in 1896 when he was 21, just before he left to serve his country as the second Lieutenant with the 4th (Queen’s Own) Hussars in 1896.

According to the Aviva archives:

“As a young officer in the 4th Queen’s Own Hussars, Winston Churchill took out a personal accident policy with the Accident Insurance Company Ltd (No.2). The policy covered accidental death for £1,000, with lesser benefits in the event of disablement” 

The archives also provide more information on Mr Churchill’s life insurance policy as follows:

“The annual premium of £6 14s (£6.70) included risks from steeplechasing and other forms of racing, plus travel and temporary residence outside Europe.”

The wonder of Winston Churchill and his legendary altercations and unhealthy habits undoubtedly indicate a substantial premium in today’s market. His quote: “You must put your head into the lion’s mouth if the performance is to be a success” accurately described his risky attitude to life. While he rode his horses into battle, on the racetrack on the polo field, escaped death from his numerous serious car accidents and smoked, drank and ate like there was no tomorrow. In today’s culture of risk aversion, his monthly premium would surely reflect his precarious habits adversely! 

Have a look at the Aviva archive to see his famous signature on the policy document, and some other notable names insured.

Altogether, a charismatic and intriguing human being with colossal presence. However, today, sadly, Sir Winston’s name has alternative insurance connotations to many, and not always remembered for his leadership skills. In fact, despite his literary accomplishments, political reforms and wartime heroics, Winston Churchill continues to allude many youngsters, who frequently refer to him as a “boss of an insurance company” or a nodding British bulldog!

Sir Winston understood the facts about life insurance!

One thing is clear, Sir Winston Churchill had the right idea about life insurance, and the reasoning behind his support of protecting loved ones is still pertinent today. Despite these facts, incredibly, many people fail to secure the financial security and future of their loved ones with a suitable life insurance policy. 

Life insurance as a product has evolved over the years to reflect modern living and may appear complicated, as no two policies are the same. However, necessity has driven change and demand. With advancements in medicine and technology, coupled with the vast amount of products and providers sees premiums driven down and it is easier than ever to obtain life insurance for very little outlay. Of course, this depends on individual circumstances, and it is essential to talk to a professional to get the right advice and, of course, the right cover. 

As expert life insurance advisors, with innovative technologies and extensive knowledge of the market, you can rely on us to provide impartial, practical advice on life insurance cover to suit you and your loved ones.

In the words of wise Sir Winston, “We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give”. How we construe his meaningful quote is subjective. Ultimately, when a partner, parent, primary caregiver dies, the debts and living expenses often become untenable for those left behind. Life insurance mitigates a myriad of difficulties, from dealing with grief, paying the mortgage each month, ensuring children can go to college. The list is endless.  Ending on one more appropriate quote: “It is not in our power to anticipate our destiny.” — Winston Churchill, 1932

As a family, do not let life insurance be an afterthought, make it a priority! 

Get in touch with us, call or use the form below, and one of our expert life insurance advisors will be in touch.

 

 

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22Oct2019

Life insurance and vaping

Are you, like us, noticing a sudden drop in the number of people vaping? Only a couple of months back vaping surrounded us like an enveloping fog of sweet cinnamon.  Suddenly, without warning the epidemic of vaping appears to have disappeared, literally, from the earth.  The reason might be down to the recent deaths attributed to vaping, although it is not yet clear the exact cause, some blaming the chemicals used in the flavouring.

What is vaping?

Many people believe that vaping is a new-fangled invention. But you may be surprised to know that vaping has been around since 1963 when an American businessperson named Herbert Gilbert developed the logic behind a battery-powered vapour cigarette.  You can actually see the original patent here.

Fascinating stuff when you realise his invention stemmed from watching his aunt bake cookies in a fire powered oven, the lovely smell of baking cookies propelled Herbert to attempt a “safe” cigarette!

Fast forward a few decades to China, and we find a businessperson by the name of Hon Lik, whose father died from lung cancer attributed to heavy smoking. Honk Lik came up with an alternative to smoking regular tobacco, with his version of the e-cigarette, believed to be a safer version of inhaling a vapour from a heated up liquid as opposed to smoke from burning tobacco. Ok, fast forward sixteen years or so to where we are today and, suddenly, a business valued at $9 Billion in the US alone, is plummeted into one of doubt and fear with a sudden outbreak in vapour related deaths.

What is the cause of the sudden vapour related deaths?

The medical profession is perplexed about the actual cause of deaths; they are questioning some of the synthetic additives, particularly the possibility of toxic ingredients in black market products. Currently, they are examining the contents of synthetic CBD and THC (constituents of the cannabis plant), plus common additives such as Vitamin E acetate and other adulterants. Another aspect of the industry under scrutiny are the scented oils when inhaled, coat the lungs and cause respiratory failure.

Are there any deaths in the UK from vaping?

In the UK luckily no deaths, as yet, but at least 200 health issues including respiratory disorders and heart problems, all linked to vaping. The fact that no one has died has led to a backlash to the anti-vaping campaign from some organisations such as PHE (Public Health England.) The argument is that vaping remains a much safer alternative than regular cigarettes and, if used correctly, may save the lives of thousands of people who turn to vaping to help them quit smoking. They link the American vaping related deaths with black market products containing deadly toxins.

However, medical experts in the UK are increasingly concerned about other ingredients causing health issues, such as vegetable oil coating the lungs. It must be remembered that it took many years before smoking cigarettes linked with lung cancer, let us not go down the same route with vaping.

As the vaping industry is relatively new and has taken off in such an immense and popular manner, with limited regulation, doctors do not really know yet what they are dealing with. The message from the medical profession generally is “do not vape until they have these vapour related deaths figured out”.

Will vaping affect my life insurance policy?

Some life insurance companies are already beginning to sit up and take notice.  If you vape this may affect your life insurance premiums in the future. Many insurers are not concerned about vaping if the electronic device does not contain nicotine.  However, Zurich and Aviva are changing their policies to identify vaping as the same as regular cigarettes, regardless of the ingredients.  Until the medical industry can safely rule on the safety of vaping, vape addicts will need to look elsewhere for that vapour hit.

In the meantime, if you are at all concerned contact your insurance broker or company for more advice.  If you are thinking about life insurance, or wish to talk to us, click on the button below, fill in our form, and a friendly, professional life insurance agent will be in touch.

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11Oct2019

We need to talk……about life insurance

What is a difficult subject to think about, let alone discuss? Answer: dying. Second on that list of challenging topics: life insurance. The two go hand in hand for personal finance planning, especially when you are a) young and b) have a family who depends upon you. We get it, life insurance is a complicated (and perhaps tad uninteresting) subject to talk about!

Consider why life insurance is important.

If you are young with a family that depends upon you, either for the main income or as primary caregiver, or both, we need to talk about why life insurance is essential.

When we are young, we consistently buck against the concept of growing old. We look at our parents, grandparents, never imagining that one day we will be in their shoes, living their life. But hey, it happens ok! We all grow older, and hopefully, our lives will be enriched by our experiences. Be it travel, education, fulfilling careers, great books and films, memorable evenings out with good friends.

Life insurance is cheaper when you are young and healthy.

For most of us, we will meet that certain someone, lock eyes across a crowded room and never want to look away again! When that event occurs, well let us just say welcome to an entirely new world. Marriage, mortgage, children, life is never the same again. But in a great way!

Why life insurance is vital as a cornerstone of financial planning

It was that moment, that eye-locking moment, which changed the course of your life, especially financially! Careers and mortgages go hand in hand, starting a family may put a strain on finances, but somehow you manage, as a team. You look after your property and your loved ones, those that rely and depend upon you. Financially and as a caregiver.

When it comes to finances, you think you have it all sorted, mortgage payments, savings, investments, pensions. What about insurance? You may have the obvious, e.g. contents and buildings insurance, you will be fine if you are the victim of a house robbery or fire. One missing cornerstone of your financial planning will likely be life insurance.

Why do I need life insurance? 

To put it bluntly, who knows what the future holds for any of us? But having a plan to prevent extreme financial suffering and heartache for our loved ones is the best course of action. Recent research carried out by AIG Life concluded that, as we previously stated, most adults prefer to bury their head and presume that the worst will not happen. As a result of their research, AIG has coined the tagline “illness denial.”

The reality, however, is that nothing could be further from the truth, with the three major causes of death in the UK being cancer, heart disease and strokes. According to the AIG, this worrying trend of “illness denial” causes people being unprepared financially if they were to fall to any one of these life-threatening, common diseases.

Ready to talk about why life insurance is important?

Even more reason why we need to talk. Talk about taking practical steps to plan and prepare for the worse, for the risk of serious illness and death.

Plan for the future of our loved ones, should the unthinkable occur and they lose you. You can help them to burden not only the grief but also the hardship of selling the family home and relying upon others to help carry this unnecessary financial load.

Get to know our friendly team of life insurance advisors, ready to answer your questions, provide sympathetic support and solutions to any issues about life insurance you might be pondering or experiencing.

When it comes to talking about life insurance, we speak your language.

Our focus is on you as a person, not as a commodity. We are motivated to find the best resolution for your personal circumstances; we have real people, not robots or answer machines. Most importantly, we speak your language.

Speak to one of our advisors and find out about the various life insurance policies on offer, (there is one for just about everybody on the planet!). We can advise on the costs and benefits of life insurance, simply complete our online form or give us a call.

There is no obligation and no pressure!

 

 

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