Almost three in five (57%) women in full time employment predominately make the financial decisions in their household, compared to 47% in 2011.
However, the study also shows that over 10 million women in full time employment (84%) do not have a critical illness policy in place, with the majority (57%) citing expense as the reason they cannot justify taking out this cover.
The cost of protection for women is also likely to rise when the EU gender directive comes into force on December 21st.
Over two fifths (41%) of female employees said they would take out a protection policy if they had children, a huge rise on just a quarter (25%) who said they would in 2011.
A further 28% said someone close to them getting a serious illness would make them consider purchasing critical illness cover, whilst a fifth (21%) cite getting married as something that would motivate them to do so.
Jennifer Gilchrist, senior product development manager at Scottish Provident, said: “Women are increasingly assuming financial responsibility in the home both for making money and making financial decisions.
“It is a cause for concern that women who work are not recognising the importance of protection, potentially leaving themselves and their families open to financial hardship if they should become seriously ill, lose their jobs or die.
“Despite becoming ever more responsible for financial decisions, women are not making appropriate choices to safeguard their futures.
“Women need to take the necessary steps to protect their own and their families’ finances, should they no longer be able to work.
“With 100 days to go until the EU Gender Directive comes into force, women can avoid paying more by seeing an adviser and sorting out their protection needs now.”