LV= has improved its critical illness (CI) cover.
The changes include increasing the number of standard conditions, ABI+ definitions, partial payments, and the introduction of new enhanced payments.
The protection provider has also improved a number of definitions for existing conditions, in a move it describes as increasing the quality of cover and also reflecting changes in medical diagnosis.
LV= now offers cover on 59 conditions in total (previously 48), with 18 ABI+ definitions (previously 16). LV= has more than doubled the number of partial payments available to 16 (previously seven), and includes cover for minor heart attacks and minor strokes.
Under the new enhanced payments, clients will now receive 150% of cover at claim if they are diagnosed with one of a number of neurological diseases before the age of 45, and 200% of cover at claim for certain conditions if it is the direct result of an accident, such as loss of speech, paralysis of a limb or traumatic head injury.
LV= has increased the maximum age for taking out its critical illness cover from 60 to 65. The number of illnesses children are covered for under the CI policy also matches the adult conditions now covered (excluding total permanent disability).
Mark Jones, LV= head of protection, said: “Before making these changes we spent a considerable amount of time listening to our claims and underwriting teams, advisers and customers to make sure what we are doing is meaningful and adds real value. Suffering a heart attack or a stroke are two of the most common reasons that we pay claims, so leading the market by adding partial payments for both of these conditions will make a big difference in being able to make a claim. The new unique benefits, such as ‘double cover’ payment, we believe will also make our CI cover stand out.
“Advisers can feel confident that our product covers the most serious conditions, and that we also look to provide financial support for sudden events like an accident, or an illness that may not be life threatening, but can still have a huge impact on people’s circumstances.”