Is 12 months accident and sickness insurance cover enough?

I want some insurance to cover my salary if I am too ill to work as I don’t have much sick pay. I’ve seen many plans that can only payout for a maximum of 12 months, is this really enough cover?

What happens if I am sick for longer than 12 months, due to cancer or something like that, would the plan just stop paying out?

Question asked by Charlene Gordon
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Answered by Andrew Jenkinson

Short term vs. long term protection explained

One of the major flaws with accident and sickness insurance is that these plans can only payout for a maximum of 12 consecutive months (although with some plans 24 months of cover can be obtained).

Do payments stop after 12 months?

Yes, this means that if a more serious condition is suffered that requires more that 12 months off work there would be no protection past this point. In other words, the plan would simply cease making payments even if you were still too ill or injured to work.

Do I need more than 12 months cover?

Although 12 months of protection may provide enough cover for a very acute condition, such as broken leg, it can be nowhere near enough time to recover from something more serious, if a full recovery is even possible at all.

One insurer, Ageas Protect, report from their pricing data (released in 2011) that between the ages of 30 and 65, 1 in 7 people are off work for 6 months or more. 1 in 3 of those will still be off work 5 years later. These figures clearly highlight the need for longer term protection.

Are there any long-term alternatives?

Yes, income protection insurance can cover earnings until retirement if you are unable to return to work due to illness or injury.

Essentially, with an income protection policy (sometimes known as permanent health insurance) the plan continues to payout either until you are well enough to return to work or you reach the end of the policy term, which is commonly set at age around 65.

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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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