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Accident and sickness insurance
Accident and sickness insurance is a type of income protection policy designed to help anyone in employment meet their living costs in the event they are not able to work following injury or illness. It enables you to cover monthly outgoings until you’re back on your feet again, or indefinitely, depending on the circumstances.
What is accident and sickness insurance?
Accident and sickness insurance, also known as accident and sickness protection cover, helps pay the bills if you experience illness or have an accident that leaves you unable to work for a spell or indefinitely. It provides up to 70% of your income every month, preventing you from falling into arrears and maintaining your standard of living.
Mortgage payment protection insurance is a type of accident and sickness cover. The difference is that MPPI insures a specific repayment should you become unable to work, whereas accident and sickness insurance can be used to to meet all sorts of bills, from utilities, phone bills and TV contracts to food shopping and family activities.
Accident and sickness insurance cover is also one of the most straight forward policies on the market. As long as you keep paying your monthly premium, if you fall ill or get hurt through no fault of your own, you’ll be covered. The money you receive in return is then yours to spend on what you want.
Different types of accident and sickness insurance policies are available, such as short and long term cover, but the circumstances in which a policy pays out remains the same. By comparing accident and sickness insurance quotes with us, you can also be reassured that the policy you find will provide the right cover at a budget to suit you too.
Why do I need accident and sickness insurance?
Did you know that almost one million British workers are off work for a prolonged period each year due to sickness, and that 300,000 have to leave work altogether due to ill health? None of us want to think it will happen to us, but the reality is that we are actually more likely to become ill than die, and that income protection insurances are among the most important you can buy.
Think about your current circumstances and how you would pay the bills if unable to work. If you could rely on your partner’s income or have substantial savings, you’re in the fortunate minority; according to the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII), a quarter of workers in the UK could afford to pay the bills for just three months if they had an accident or a long-term illness, and government sickness benefits might not provide as much as you expect.
In 2019, a record £5.7bn was paid out in protection insurance claims, the equivalent of almost £15.8m every day and representing 98.3% of claims made.
How does accident and sickness insurance work?
As with most types of insurance, you choose the right policy for your circumstances and pay a monthly premium. If you then become ill or have an accident that leaves you unable to work for a length of time, you will need to get in touch with your accident and sickness protection policy provider and make a claim.
Once your claim is accepted and any wait period over, you will receive a monthly payment of up to 70% of your income directly into your bank account, which can be used to pay any bills or expenses needed.
What types of accident and sickness protection are available?
You can opt for different accident and sickness insurance policies, including:
This type of policy covers you if you’re unable to work for a shorter length of time - usually six to 12 months, although some policies offer cover for up to two years. Short-term policies are affordable and easy to buy but the cover is not as comprehensive as longer-term options.
Long-term sickness protection covers you if you’re unable to return to work for more than a year and, in many cases, stays in place until retirement. As a result, the premiums are more expensive than with a short-term policy, but you have peace of mind that the bills will continue to be paid no matter how long you’re off work.
Accident, Sickness and Unemployment insurance:
Many accident and sickness insurance policies provide cover solely in the event of poor health. Another option is accident, sickness and unemployment (ASU) cover, which also covers you in the event you lose your job through no fault of your own. These comprehensive policies are popular, although you can also buy stand-alone redundancy insurance too.
What do I need to know about accident and sickness cover?
It’s important to note that most policies include a deferred or ‘wait’ period before payments begin. Some policies have a deferred period of four weeks but, with certain long-term policies, the wait before benefits kick in could be as long as 52 weeks, so do read the small print carefully to check what you’re getting.
Also, often people think that long-term accident and sickness insurance is the same as critical illness cover, but this isn’t the case. Critical illness insurance provides a cash lump sum in the event of you being diagnosed with a serious condition listed in the policy, whereas accident and sickness protection is designed to replace your income.
Accident and sickness insurance often excludes conditions such as stress, anxiety and back problems, as well as pre-existing medical conditions that you’ll be asked about when obtaining quotes.
Why compare accident and sickness insurance quotes?
Comparing a range of quotes gives peace of mind that you have the right cover for your own particular circumstances. Fully authorised insurance broker ActiveQuote.com specialises in income protection policies including accident and sickness insurance, working with trusted partners including Gocompare.com, MoneySavingExpert and uSwitch.com to bring you the best policy for you.
When you compare accident and insurance with us, you’ll be asked how long you would like the policy to run for (the policy ‘term’). You can choose to be covered for a fixed number of years, until a fixed date or until you reach a certain age. Not all policies will pay a monthly benefit for the entire term, so check the benefit period of each quote before selecting the one for you.
 Chartered Insurance Institute’s (CII) Building Resilient Households report 2016
 Association of British Insurers (ABI)