Paying for a product you hope you’ll never use?

United Kingdom, March 25, 2014

When it comes to insurance, you’re paying for something you pray you’ll never use. But if you have to make a claim, you need to be confident it will pay out. To help reassure customers, Aegon UK recently released 2013 claims data.

The statistics, compiled using the Association of British Insurers guidance, show Aegon UK paid 93.18% of all critical illness (CI) claims last year, 2.18% more than in 2012. The amount paid to CI claimants also increased by more than a third, up 37% to approximately €40 million (£33.2m) in 2013 compared to around €29 million (£24.3m) in 2012.

This counters an identified lack of trust in insurance providers by some consumers. Last year, Aegon's Retirement Readiness Research highlighted that 'lack of trust in the financial services industry' was one of the main global barriers to people taking out protection.

It's an impression that Dougy Grant, Protection Director at Aegon UK, is keen to dispel. "Our claims figures continue to be strong and consistent. We continually look at how we can improve our customers' experience in the event that they have to make a claim. For Aegon, the customer experience at point of claim is equally important to the number of claims paid."

Why were some critical illness claims declined?

Of the 6.82% of CI claims declined by the company in 2013, more than half, 56%, were due to the definition of CI not being met. The remainder, 44%, were due to misrepresentation.

Says Dougy Grant: "We continue to work closely with advisers and their clients to minimize the occurrences of misrepresentation and continue to streamline the process of paying claims through our tele-claims service, which was launched in 2009."

Five critical illnesses: cancer, heart attack, stroke, multiple sclerosis and benign brain tumour, accounted for almost 90% of CI claims last year. Of these, cancer accounted for 62%, followed by heart attacks (12%) and strokes (8%). The average age at claim for CI was 48 years old.

Childhood cancer

To promote International Childhood Cancer Day in February, Aegon UK shared child CI claims for the first time. Dougy Grant, Protection Director at Aegon UK, said: "Sadly our claims have included all ages from a child of one to a teenager of 16.

"While money can't compensate for the suffering, it enables the family to concentrate more on supporting their child. Without the additional money, trips to hospital with expensive parking, taking time off work and organizing childcare for other children are a financial burden which just adds to the stress of the situation."

Earlier this year Aegon UK added cardiac arrest to its CI cover, bringing the number of conditions covered to 43. It also now covers eleven additional critical illness conditions which includes two children's conditions.

Further information

For more information on claims visit Aegon UK's 'Understanding claims' website.


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Written by: Aegon N.V.