Scottish Widows has unveiled details of its new protection product range, which will include reducing, relevant and increasing term life, stand-alone critical illness and life with critical illness plans.
The firm confirmed its plans last June, following a review in 2012 into whether to broaden distribution beyond branches of parent Lloyds Banking Group.
Set to launch tomorrow (7 October), it will be using the ‘Protect’ name to distinguish from the ‘Protection For Life’ plans, which will continue to be marketed through Lloyds outlets.
In addition to the life and critical illness plans, the firm is also offering a whole of life plan without a terminal illness option.
There is a minimum £100,000 sum assured with a maximum of £3m, with maximum age set at entry is 79 for term plans, 84 for whole of life and 64 for any critical illness element. The life cover’s maximum sum assured is £25m.
In terms of critical illness conditions, ostensibly there are 41 main conditions, 12 additional payment conditions as well as total permanent disability. However, in common with many insurers, both dementia and Alzheimers are included when only dementia is required to provide the requisite coverage.
According to Alan Lakey, diector of CI Expert, there are two conditions unique to Scottish Widows Protect - anoxia/hypoxia causing death of brain tissue due to inadequate blood supply and carcinoma in situ of the endometrium treated by hysterectomy.
Mr Lakey commented that the Protect plan offers a wider range of conditions than the branch accessed plan, although the branch-based plan has a superior cancer definition.
“The plan shows up well on the CIExpert ranking system and, subject to pricing and underwriting, is likely to appeal to many advisers.”
He added that beneficial aspects include bacterial meningitis, which does not require permanent neurological deficit, merely three months of persisting symptoms.
“Additionally, benign spinal cord tumour will be met if surgical removal is carried out, whereas other insurers require permanent neurological deficit.”