GIP claims data now amalgamated

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Almost £300m was paid out in group income protection (GIP) claims last year according to figures collated by Grid.

The group risk trade body said the inaugural analysis found GIP supported 13,500 claimants but that just 6% of the employed population were currently covered through their employer.

In total £292.3m was paid out with £82.3m of that figure made up of new claims from 2010.

The statistics also reveal the average annual benefit stands at £21,500 - just £2,500 less than UK average earnings.

Grid suggested they provided a clear indication of just how valuable these policies are to Britain's workers as well as showing how many employees are currently missing out on this crucial benefit if they fall ill.

Katharine Moxham, spokesperson for Grid, said: "GIP provides cover which is often more generous in the event of a claim than the government's Employment & Support Allowance (ESA), and it can provide access to protection cover that people may not be able to achieve on their own.

"It can also replace lost income where an employee has to take a part-time or lower-paid position because of disability, illness or injury.

"As well as the financial advantages of having insured their liability to continue salary in the event of long-term disability.

"And given that vocational rehabilitation is a primary feature of most GIP policies, an employer with this in place will be well-equipped to function in a post Welfare Reform world as well as significantly reducing the burden on the state," she added.

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