LV= has introduced of a range of new features to its Income Protection (IP) insurance product to extend cover for customers and increase the opportunities to make a claim.
The new features include:
- Parent and child cover
- Enhanced rehab support
- Extended NHS sick pay guarantee
- New automatic review periods for exclusions
- ‘Pay my Mortgage’ facility
LV= believes it will lead the market by introducing Income Protection policies that include Parent and Child cover. This means that if a parent needs to care for a child because they are diagnosed with a specific illness, has an operation or medical procedure, the family will be paid a lump sum. This benefit covers 54 conditions and LV= will pay six times the monthly cover amount up to a maximum of £25,000. The money paid could allow customers to take unpaid leave from work to care for their child, or cover costs associated with medical treatment.
In addition, LV= rehab support services will now be available as soon as the customer is unable to work, during the waiting period. To aid their recovery, LV= can offer services including physiotherapy, psychological support, and return to work services to help customers get back to full health as quickly as possible.
Furthermore, LV= has extended its NHS sick pay guarantee to include dentists and removed the requirement to be directly employed by the NHS. This means that dentists, doctors and surgeons directly employed by a private practice who also receive NHS sick pay can benefit from the guarantee.
LV= has also introduced automatic review periods for exclusions that customers may have on their Income Protection policy, which is a unique feature in the market. Depending on the circumstance the exclusion may be offered automatically with a review period. After the review period if the customer has had no further symptoms the exclusion will be removed. LV= believes this is a fairer alternative to offering cover at a reduced premium and the exclusion being in place for the full term of the policy.
Finally, with the introduction of the ‘Pay my Mortgage’ facility, LV= is the first insurer to respond to the recent Department for Work and Pensions clarification about means testing of insurance payments used to cover mortgage payments. Depending on their individual circumstances at the time of claiming, this will mean a customer can have all or some of their Income Protection claim paid directly to their lender to cover their mortgage.
Chris McNab, head of protection at LV=, said: “Income Protection can be overlooked by many people who don’t see the benefit of taking it out. It’s therefore essential that we demonstrate the value of Income Protection and that our policies reflect the true experience of people who need to take time off work.
“In particular, we’re really proud to be introducing Parent and Child cover, which is unique to the market and provides parents with peace of mind at a time when it is needed most.”