What is total and permanent disability on critical illness cover?

I’m going to get critical illness cover but one thing that I would like more information on Total & Permanent Disability protection to help with my research. Can you explain what this is and should i make sure i have it in my policy?

Question asked by Paul James
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Answered by Robert Harvey

Total & Permanent Disability (TPD) explained

Total & Permanent Disability (TPD) is one of around 40 specific medical conditions covered under Critical Illness Insurance policies. The contract will payout if the claimant is left totally and permanently incapacitated and unable to perform either their occupation or carry out a series of daily activities.

TPD will apply if the condition the claimant suffers is something irreversible and life changing and not covered elsewhere under the policy, so for example permanent physical or mental impairment caused because of a stroke, would ordinarily be covered under the stroke definition.

Understanding the different definitions

There are a number of different definitions that apply for TPD, including ‘own occupation’; ‘suited occupation’; ‘any occupation’; and ‘activities of daily living. The best definition is ‘own occupation’ which will payout if the insured is left permanently incapable of carrying out their job, however this is typically only offered to those in lower risk professions. For those in high risk occupations, one of the lesser definitions may apply, or for those not in work it will be ‘activities of daily living’, where the criteria is more stringent and the claimant must be unable to do at least three of six activities, such as walking 200 meters or climb a flight of 12 stairs, for example.

How likely it is you will need to make a claim for TDP

In reality TPD claims represent around 5% of all critical illness claims, with cancer, heart attack and stroke the most commonly claimed for conditions. Around 34% of TPD claims are rejected as well for failing to meet the terms of the definition.

Other options

To truly get comprehensive insurance cover against the risk of being able to work because of a disability it’s often better to look to Income Protection Insurance.

critical illness insurance
 
total & permanent disability
 
medical exclusion
 
income protection
 
This information does not constitute financial or other professional advice. You should consult your professional adviser or contact us directly on 02084327333 should you require financial advice. It is important to ensure any insurance policy you take out is suitable for your needs.
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