With CI policies constantly evolving over time, historic policies can offer favourable payouts on certain conditions while offering very limited cover for others.
This can make it hard for advisers to deduce whether their client should stick with their old policy, or take out a new one.
No adviser would want to jeopardise a client’s ability to claim by replacing a plan with something that offers less protection than they currently enjoy.Scott Taylor-Barr, Carl Summers Financial Services
The new comparison tool, designed to make this process easier, benchmarks legacy plans from all major UK insurers over 20 years.
It uses data from medical professionals who have scoured the language used in CI policies over this period to determine value, based on price and cover.
The analysis also includes a list of all policies not chosen with a rationale for exclusion, and highlights where a condition covered by an existing policy is excluded in any alternative policies.
The tool has gone live under Protection Guru Pro, which launched in May last year to provide analysis for income protection, critical illness, mortgage protection.
Adviser at Carl Summers Financial Services, Scott Taylor-Barr, said the tool will be “invaluable” in the lead up to the Financial Conduct Authority’s consumer duty which requires advisers to think in terms of best value for clients, not just lowest price.
“Price-only comparisons will struggle to meet this new standard without additional work from the adviser, so it’s great to have a new system in place now that takes the stress away from the research process,” said Taylor-Barr.
“The modest increases in premium that results from taking better value products will also generate additional revenue, so the service could literally pay for itself.”
The new tool has also combed through complex PruProtect and Vitality plans which have not previously been included on legacy comparison systems.
Taylor-Barr said this was “a massive step forward”, considering the complexity of critical illness wordings is such that these can really only be fully assessed by doctors.
“No adviser would want to jeopardise a client’s ability to claim by replacing a plan with something that offers less protection than they currently enjoy,” Taylor-Barr added.
“This opens the door for us to provide better quality reviews of in-force plans, all using one system, rather than having premium, quality and legacy plan information spread across multiple systems.