Broadened definitions following feedback from intermediaries and enhanced cover for CIx
Legal & General (L&G) has announced a simplified list of conditions for its critical illness cover and increased additional payments for its critical illness extra (CIx) offering only available through intermediaries.
To reflect a recent poll which found that 81% of advisers would prefer conditions to be merged together where it makes sense, L&G has combined some of its conditions.
Among the broadened definitions, ‘coronary artery by-pass grafts' and ‘open heart surgery' have been combined to ‘specified heart surgery' in a bid to improve outcomes for customers.
The drug and alcohol exclusion has been removed from definitions around liver failure and major organ transplants now include artificial devices or animal transplants, while pulmonary hypertension has been extended to cover all causes, assuming policyholders meets the specified New York Heart Association classifications.
CIx and CCIx
Additional payments for CIx have been increased from a maximum of £30,000 or 25% to £30,000 or 50% of the amount of cover, whichever is lower. Additional payments for coronary angioplasty, brain abscess drained via craniotomy, primary sclerosing cholangitis and necrotising fasciitis have also been added.
Children's critical illness extra (CCIx) has been extended to include extra conditions. If CCIx is purchased with either CI or CIx, cover will be extended to include all conditions covered under CI, CIx and CCIx. Until now, CCIx has only included conditions listed under CI and CCIx.
‘Quality over quantity'
"At Legal & General, our mission is to work together with intermediaries to ensure more people across the country are protected from the financial impact of a critical illness," said Craig Brown, Legal & General intermediary director. "That's why we're listening to our intermediary partners, the very people on the front line of conversations about cover, taking on board their feedback to improve our critical illness offerings.
"Quality over quantity is really important to us as a business. These latest changes improve the level of cover we offer to customers, but also reduce the complexity of critical illness products. We think that will make it easier for advisers to have those important protection conversations and explain these products to clients, while also giving consumers much more certainty over the support they have if and when they need it."
‘The way forward'
"CIExpert is a long-time advocate of simplicity within critical illness plan design," said Alan Lakey, director, CIExpert. "The days of adding yet more conditions, many of which provided little likelihood of a successful claim, are gone.
"The changes announced by Legal & General provide the triple benefits of reducing complexity, reducing condition numbers and enhancing the prospect of a successful claim. The process of combining linked conditions into one over-arching version is the way forward and Legal & General's changes is a first positive step in this direction."
Read our CIExpert analysis of the L&G CI updates in full here.
Adam Higgs, head of research at Protection Guru, added: "The addition of a coronary angioplasty definition to the comprehensive proposition is extremely valuable as these procedures become more common place and the widening of their pulmonary hypertension definition to include all forms of pulmonary hypertension - including secondary causes from lung and heart disease - is market-leading. Overall the changes put Legal & General back into a very strong position in both the comprehensive and cost-effective ends of the market."
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