Legal & General has revamped its children’s critical illness offering with a more extensive option called ‘Children’s Critical Illness Extra’.
As part of the optional add-on L&G will pay 50% of the amount of cover, or up to £25,000 for a valid claim.
Children will be covered from birth until the age of 22 and there is no limit to the number of children a parent can claim for.
Craig Brown, director, intermediary, Legal & General, said: “Dealing with a critical illness is extremely challenging for anyone, but when it is a child, this makes it particularly distressing.
“The support provided by a children’s critical illness policy can make a huge difference in helping those during difficult times, yet only 13% of UK employees have taken out a CIC policy.
“The UK still suffers from a significant protection gap and as this figure shows, there is a serious risk of leaving children exposed and parents vulnerable to financial difficulty if either suffer from a critical illness.
“As an industry, it is our duty to try and close this protection gap.
“There is of course more we can do to educate consumers about the importance of cover but improving our offerings to consumers is also part of that mission to close the protection gap by providing clients with the additional support, protection, and peace of mind they need.
“We always strive to offer the best service for both our brokers and customers alike and we will continue to review our product offering to ensure our customers are well-supported during such tragic events.”
Children’s Critical Illness Extra includes a new children’s terminal illness benefit, providing cover of £10,000 if the child is diagnosed with an advanced or rapidly progressing incurable condition, with a life expectancy of less than 12 months by the hospital consultant and Legal & General medical officer.
12 additional illnesses are covered as well, including cystic fibrosis, crohn’s disease, spina bifida, downs syndrome and type one diabetes.
Adam Higgs, head of adviser services at F&TRC, said: “Legal & General has broadened its children’s critical illness offering to allow clients the choice of standard or comprehensive cover.
“This welcome move sees the insurer provide eight of the 12 child specific conditions available across the market under a new comprehensive option, which also provides cover from birth, as opposed to 30 days on their standard children’s cover.
“Children’s claims are now commonly the fourth most claimed upon area for critical illness cover. Legal & General has increased their maximum age and decreased the required survival period, which improves their positioning in terms of quality for a company that is traditionally known for being very competitive on price.
“However, the ability to remove children’s cover altogether has not been provided, which can be important for those who don’t have nor plan to have children. Some insurers, such as Royal London, are more flexible in this regard.”