Life beyond the Armed Forces - Protection insurance for veterans

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Life beyond the Armed Forces – Protection insurance for veteransLife beyond the Armed Forces – Protection insurance for veterans

With Armed Forces Month coming to an end, we thought it might be useful to talk about access to insurance having left the armed forces.

A lot of people dedicate many years of their lives to the armed forces, but unfortunately life afterwards isn’t always smooth sailing. For some, the armed forces might bring on medical conditions, which can be caused by a range of things from their rigorous training to time spent on deployment. Some conditions we’ve known some veterans to have are:

Of course not everybody is to leave the armed forces with a medical condition, but for those who do, knowing your options when it comes to protection insurance can be helpful when it comes to ever needing it.

What is the process?

When applying for protection insurance, the insurer will ask some basic questions and then move on to asking questions about your health. It’s at this point where you would mention any existing medical conditions that you have. The insurer is likely to ask some more questions about the condition to gather as much information as they need in order to make a decision on your application. With many conditions, the insurer might also request a report from your GP surgery (with your consent), so that they have a clear picture of your health. Some common questions asked for most conditions are:

  • When were you diagnosed?
  • Do you take any medication?
  • What treatment have you received?
  • What are your symptoms?
  • Have you required any time off work for this?
What are my options?

Some common types of protection insurance are life insurance, critical illness cover and income protection. If you’re currently serving in the armed forces, you can check out our recent blog on how to get protection insurance if you’re in the armed forces.

A medical condition can play a role in the insurance options available to you. With that being said, we’re just going to do a quick run through of what might be available if you have one of the conditions we mentioned earlier.

Mental health/PTSD

Life insurance can sometimes be available with standard terms (no price increase) for those with mental health or PTSD, but depending on the answers to your questions and the severity of your conditions or symptoms, it could also be that you see a price increase or your application could be declined. Our advisers are experts in this area and know which insurers to choose that will be right for you. This is also the same for when applying for critical illness cover.

When it comes to income protection it’s very likely that you will have a mental health exclusion placed on your policy. This is quite standard for anyone that has experienced mental health in their past, even mild anxiety.


For life insurance, critical illness cover and income protection, the insurer will want to know how many seizures you have per year and the type of epilepsy that you have. Depending on your circumstances, you could be offered standard terms or see a price increase if you have many seizures or have tonic-clonic seizures. For income protection, you could also see an exclusion added to your policy. If it is seeming difficult to find the protection insurance that you need, we can look into more specialist options to arrange cover.

Check out an incredible case study of ours using the link below. Of an ex paratrooper finding protection insurance having developed epilepsy after active duty in Iraq.

Shot twice in the head – but my adviser still found me life and critical illness insurance.’


Depending on the cause of the stroke, life insurance can sometimes be available with standard terms. For example, if caused by a traumatic head injury that you have fully recovered from. Generally, most people who have had a stroke will see a price increase of their monthly premium. If you have had severe episodes or numerous strokes then the premium could be even higher or your application could be declined, and we would then look at specialist insurers.

Critical illness cover for a person who has had a stroke isn’t widely available, though there are sometimes plans available depending on the nature of the stroke and your overall health. Any policy found would usually come with an exclusion for strokes and related conditions.

There are times where income protection can be available, though it’s most likely that there will be a cerebrovascular exclusion. 

Heart attack

For life insurance, insurers will want to know how many heart attacks you have had, when it happened, how many vessels were affected, if you had surgery or a stent fitted, if you have lasting symptoms and if your blood pressure and cholesterol are under control. Applications will often be considered once 6 months have passed since the event. If there are no other significant health conditions in your medical history then it could be that there are a number of insurers who would accept your application for life insurance. These will usually be accepted at non-standard terms, meaning there is likely to be a price increase. If there are other medical conditions, we might then have to refer to a specialist insurer.

Critical illness applications usually have strict eligibility, and any cover you find is likely to come with a cardiovascular exclusion. This is also the case when it comes to income protection.

Loss of limbs/paraplegia

The insurer will have some more condition specific questions to ask, but life insurance and critical illness cover can often be available on the standard market for a person with paraplegia. It is likely though that cover will come with a price increase. The insurer will be interested to know if there have been any complications or if this has caused any other problems. If it does happen to be difficult to find cover on the standard market, specialist insurers would then be considered.

Income protection isn’t usually available on the standard market. There are a few specialist insurers who could arrange cover, but just be aware that the acceptance criteria is quite strict. 

For people that have lost a limb a key thing that the insurer is likely to notice is that your BMI is different to what they would expect. Insurers do still work off BMI tables when making their decisions and it’s important that if your BMI is low due to a loss of limbs, that they are specifically asked to consider this when assessing your application.

For each of these conditions, having a protection insurance adviser can be hugely beneficial. Knowing exactly what your policy covers you for is important, and it can be a little bit difficult to figure it all out if exclusions have been added to your policy. That’s exactly when an adviser can help. Protection insurance advisers such as us here at Cura also have access to specialist insurers which wouldn’t usually be available on the likes of a comparison website, so we really do have the knowledge and connections to help find the right cover for you.

Related blogs

How to get the all important protection insurance that you need

How to get protection insurance if you’re in the armed forces

The PPP – Armed forces

Client Reviews

Life beyond the Armed Forces – Protection insurance for veterans

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Life beyond the Armed Forces – Protection insurance for veterans
Life beyond the Armed Forces – Protection insurance for veterans
Life beyond the Armed Forces – Protection insurance for veterans
Life beyond the Armed Forces – Protection insurance for veterans
Life beyond the Armed Forces – Protection insurance for veterans