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Critical illness cover is a type of insurance that pays out a tax-free lump sum if you're diagnosed with, or undergo surgery for, a critical illness that meets the insurers policy definition during the policy term and survive at least 14 days.

Put simply, critical illness cover is protection for an individual or their family in the event of them falling seriously ill. It provides a lump sum payment if the person covered meets the criteria of one of the conditions listed in their policy.

Our insurers only cover the critical illnesses they define in their policies and no others. If you need advice on cover that meets your needs contact me, I can come and meet you in Belfast or anywhere in Northern Ireland to give you some advice, with a comparison for cover from UK Defaqto rated providers.

Critical illness cover, also known as critical illness insurance, is a long-term insurance policy which covers serious illnesses listed within a policy.

If you get one of these illnesses, a critical illness policy will pay out a tax-free, one-off payment. This can help pay for your mortgage, rent, debts, or alterations to your home, such as wheelchair access, should you need it.

Critical illness insurance will pay out if you get one of the specific medical conditions or injuries listed in the policy.

But be aware that not all conditions are covered and policy will also state how serious the condition must be.

Don’t confuse critical illness cover with life insurance, although they are sometimes sold together. Examples of critical illnesses that might be covered include:

  • stroke

  • heart attack

  • certain types and stages of cancer

  • conditions such as multiple sclerosis.

Most policies will also consider permanent disabilities as a result of injury or illness. Most policies will now pay out if you're diagnosed with a terminal illness.

It only pays out once and then the policy ends. Some policies will make a smaller payment for less severe conditions, or if one of your children has one of the specified conditions.

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