Over 50s Life Insurance and Cancer 2024

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Over 50s Life Insurance and Cancer 2024Over 50s Life Insurance and Cancer 2024

One of the most common queries we receive is how to arrange life insurance if you have had cancer. There can be a lot of options if you are now recovered from the cancer, but you might need to look at some specialist routes if you still have cancer.

With Over 50s life insurance you can access life insurance quickly if you have had cancer or currently have cancer, but it’s so important that you know all the life insurance options that might be available to you.

Types of Life Insurance

The life insurance that you apply for should be based upon what you are wanting to achieve. Once people reach their 50s their reasons for wanting life insurance are often linked to funeral costs, inheritance tax planning and we’re also now seeing more people in their 50s arranging mortgages too. 

There are three types of life insurance that you will be best depending upon what you need:

Let’s take a look at each of these.

Term life insurance is a policy that has a specific end date. You choose to have it for 10 years, 13 years, 20 years, etc. This is often chosen to cover mortgages. So if you have a mortgage that is £80,000 over 17 years, you would usually arrange a life insurance policy of £80,000 over 17 years to provide your family with protection whilst there is a financial liability.

Term life insurance typically has the best value in terms of the cost of the insurance and how much money you can be insured for. It is also often the choice to provide protection against gift taxation.

Whole of life insurance tends to be used to provide protection against inheritance tax planning and funeral costs. The policy will simply keep going until you die, it does not have a set end date. 

Over 50s life insurance will also keep going without a set end date, so that your family can place a claim at any age that you die. There is a difference with Over 50s life insurance to the other policies as it is not usually medically underwritten when you apply for it. This means that you can apply for Over 50s cover when you have cancer and your policy will be accepted straight away.

Instead the insurer does medical underwriting at the point that there is a claim on a policy, with the stipulation that they will not pay a claim if you die from ill health or natural causes in the first 6 months to 2 years (depending upon the insurer you use). They act like an accidental death policy only during this time.

That exclusion can sound pretty intense especially if you do currently have cancer, but please be assured that if you do die in the first two years the money you have paid isn’t lost. Most Over 50s life insurers would refund any premiums you have paid to your family, plus a bit extra. 

Cancer and Life Insurance

When you have had cancer in the past it is always worth checking if you can get life insurance on the standard market, through a term life insurance or whole of life insurance policy. These two policy types have the best value when it comes to how much you are insured for, compared to what you are paying.

When you are applying for life insurance these bits of information will be key to what you can arrange:

  • The type of cancer that you had
  • When you were diagnosed with cancer
  • The staging and grading of your cancer
  • If your treatment has ended
  • If you are in remission

Most of the time insurers will want you to have recovered from cancer before they will consider your application for life insurance. There are sometimes exceptions for this with prostate cancer and some blood cancers.

Over 50s Life Insurance

For a lot of people that currently have cancer Over 50s life insurance might be a good option. There is quite a lot of commentary that says that Over 50s life insurance is not worth the money. This is very much a personal decision. 

Some people will say that you are better putting money into a savings account, instead of buying Over 50s life insurance. Without being too grim, this might be true, depending upon how long you live for.

Let’s do an example, I do love an example.

You are 58 and are considering taking out Over 50s life insurance.  You are a non-smoker and were diagnosed with cancer 3 years ago and it is still active. You’re wanting to have some life insurance to cover funeral expenses and we typically suggest that £10,000 is a good amount of life insurance for this. Based upon quotations as of today 23 January 2024, you can get approximately £10,000 of Over 50s life insurance for £33 per month.

It would take 25 years for you to have paid nearly £10,000 in monthly premiums to the insurer. You would be 83 before you got to a stage where you had paid more into the insurance, than the potential claim that would be paid out.

This is where choices over taking out life insurance versus putting money into savings, becomes a bit of a gamble. Ultimately, the choice you make needs to come from what concerns you the most.

If you are really worried about funeral expenses and potentially dying in the next 10-20 years, then an Over 50s life insurance is worth considering. If you don’t like the idea of paying for this kind of insurance as you plan to be alive well into your 90s, then your heart might lead you to go with the savings account instead.

Whatever decision you make needs to be right for you, with clear examples of the cost of Over 50s life insurance tailored to your needs, so that you can make a choice that gives you peace of mind.

Our award winning advisers will help you chose the right critical illness policy to match you and your needs.

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