Alex Woods, Critical Illness policy case study

As Independent Financial Advisers, we’re able to provide advice on a wide range of financial areas. In this example, we speak with Alex Woods, who is an Independent Financial Adviser based from Chase de Vere’s Bath office. He tells us about a client who suffered a stroke but who didn’t think she would be able to make a claim on her existing critical illness policy.

“My client is on her early 50s and I’ve advised her for more than 10 years. I also previously advised her late mother. I provide her with a full financial planning service, covering her investments, pensions and insurance policies.

“Unfortunately, my client recently suffered a stroke. The good news is that she has recovered, she is well and there are no longer-term side effects. She had an existing critical illness insurance policy, which was taken out before she met with me. It was a competitive product, and so we had agreed some time ago to leave it in place.

“A critical illness policy is designed to pay out a lump sum if the policyholder suffers from a ‘critical illness’, typically these policies cover cancer, heart attacks and strokes, along with a range of other afflictions. However, after reading the terms and conditions of this policy, she assumed that she wouldn’t be covered and wasn’t planning to submit a claim. This is because in the wording of the policy is said that to pay out there needed to be “long term issues” as a result of the stroke and she was now seemingly back in good health.

“I reviewed the critical illness policy terms and conditions and thought that some of the wording relating to this point was quite ambiguous. I therefore encouraged her to submit a claim. I worked with her through the process to present a compelling case of why the policy should pay out, including arranging for her doctors to provide evidence.

“The claim was successful, and the policy paid out just short of £150,000. This is particularly good timing as the client and her partner are looking to move house and they were previously planning to take money from their ISAs to help with this. Having this extra money has also enabled her to consider reducing her working hours.

“Suffice to say, she is very pleased that we submitted the claim, describing the pay out as a “life-changing sum of money.”

The contents of this article are for information purposes only and do not constitute individual advice.

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