Frequently Asked Questions
How do I get a Life Insurance or Income Protection quote?
It's simple, all you need to do when using the website is click on the green 'Instant Quote Now' button and then decide which insurance quote you want.
What does Lifebroker have that other life insurance brokers are lacking?
Lifebroker have a guarantee that we stand by. You will notice that competitors offer to match or better any other quote - Lifebrokers guarantee is simple - we guarantee to provide better value than going direct to any of the life insurance companies that we provide quotes for. You can see some of the main features of the Lifebroker guarantee to the right. For more information, see the full Lifebroker guarantee
Can I call a Lifebroker Consultant for a life insurance or income protection quote?
Yes. The Lifebroker office is open normally from 8am - 6pm Monday to Friday. You can also request Lifebroker to call you at a time that is convenient.
Can I see the full list of life insurance products the are available via Lifebroker?
- Level Term Life Insurance
- Decreasing Term Life Insurance
- Mortgage Protection Life Insurance
- Critical Illness Cover
- Income Protection
- Family Income Benefit
- Business Protection
- Income Protection for Cyclists
- Whole of Life Insurance
- Gift Inter Vivos Life Insurance
- HIV Life Insurance
- Diabetic Life Insurance
- Group Life Insurance
- Key Person Life Insurance
- Total & Permanent Disability Insurance (TPD)
Is the Lifebroker website secure?
Lifebroker have secured the pages that collect your personal data so that there is no risk to anyone else apart from Lifebroker getting it. We take your privacy seriously.
Do you provide advice on the amount of cover I should have?
The nature of our service is not to provide you with advice about the type of insurance you should have. Our service is based upon providing cost effective options in a clear and concise manner so that you can make an informed decision in your own time-without any pressure. If you are seeking advice, then our service will not suit you and you will need to employ the services of a Financial Adviser.
The best way to find an Adviser is to visit www.unbiased.co.uk
What companies do you deal with?
We offer all major insurers (see our full list of the main insurance companies that we use). Please click on the insurance company icon in order to read more about the insurance company that you are interested in.
Am I locked into the cover for a certain period?
No. The policy that you establish can be cancelled at any time without any penalties.
Can the Policy be cancelled?
Yes but only by the person that is insured. The life insurance company cannot cancel the policy unless you stop paying the premiums.
Am I covered whilst traveling overseas?
Most insurance companies that we use offer 24 hour world wide coverage in most countries (this list of countries can change at any time due to war breaking out or general civil unrest)- therefore you are normally covered whilst travelling overseas, however we always encourage you to check the definition of cover in the Key Features Document of the life insurance company that you select for your life insurance or income protection contract. All Key Features Documents are made available to you prior to you purchasing.
How do the different policies compare?
Lifebroker aims to provide clients with as much choice as possible and show the premiums of various companies for various levels of cover. With all forms of life insurance it really will depend on the cost of the product and also the financial strength of the life insurance company, as all life insurance companies will pay when you die (as long as your claim is valid). You may want to have a life insurance policy with a household brand name that you are familiar with and gives you peace-of-mind. Critical illness cover and Long Term Income Protection policies will vary slightly between companies, but these variations can be very extreme. As an example, one critical illness cover policy may have 30 critical illnesses covered, whereas another may only cover 7. You are welcome to use the Lifebroker website as much as you want to get the best priced insurance policy. When comparing the small print of what is covered, again we encourage you to read the Key Features Documents.
Does the policy have a cash value?
The majority of quotes we provide are for term life cover; this is where the policy has no cash value. Some Whole of Life insurance policies can have a cash value but the premiums are far higher than for term life insurance. Lifebroker does not provide life insurance policies that have a cash value.
How do I pay my premiums?
Most companies offer the choice of 2 methods of payment;
- Credit card
- Direct debit authority from your bank account
Lifebroker does not handle client money. All transactions are between you and the life insurance company that you have chosen.
Do I need to have a medical examination before taking out a policy?
You may need to have a medical examination or blood tests before taking out a policy, but this will depend on how much and which cover you choose, and a range of factors such as age, smoking status, height & weight combination, and health. The Life Insurance Company will pay for any medical requirements. Usually the insurance company pays for you to have a medical examination in order to take out their insurance policy. This could be as easy as a trained Nurse visiting you at your place of work or home in order to carry out tests.
What are the tax implications for the life insurance and income protection policies that Lifebroker sells on the website?
You should be aware that Lifebroker does not provide financial advice and this includes taxation advice. If you are concerned we recommend you seek taxation advice from an independent tax adviser or an Accountant.
How does the Lifebroker commission rebate structure work?
Lifebroker rebates most of the commission that they are entitled to back to their clients - YOU. We do this to share in the rewards and also to make your premiums lower. Find out more information about how the commission rebate works.
Why should I use Lifebroker?
Lifebroker is an online Life Insurance Broker that is fresh and innovative. We are very different to the traditional stuffy paper pushing Life Insurance Broker that people are all too familiar with. As an online Life Insurance Broker we specialise in a wide variety of Life Insurance and Income Protection products. Not only do we quote from all the household names but we also offer insurance products that are not easily accessible through a traditional face-to-face Life Insurance Broker.
What's better, reviewable premiums or guaranteed premiums?
Lifebroker offer both reviewable premiums and guaranteed premiums. When comparing products you may find that reviewable premiums are generally lower in price to start with. As we all know 'lower price' does not always mean 'better value', afterall you generally pay for quality and life insurance is not different.
Guaranteed rates ensure that the premium you pay will stay the same throughout the term of the policy (unless you choose to have your policy inlfation linked)
Reviewable rates can be reviewed by the insurer and can be increased, subject to the policy conditions.
Read more about guaranteed and reviewable premiums here.
Can I have a personal Lifebroker Life Insurance Consultant?
We encourange you to have a single consultant at Lifebroker. We find it easier if you are designated a consultant from original to quote to the end of the sales process.
Should I change or cancel my Life Insurance policy?
This is something that you should think very seriously about. Only you can decide this as Lifebroker does not provide financial advice.
Lifebroker has listed below 3 things for you to think about before you cancel your life insurance or income protection policy.
- If you cancel your life insurance your family has no protection. Cancelling your life insurance policy could leave your loved ones financially exposed. You originally took out life insurance to protect them and unless things have changed (ie your children have gown up and left home) then the chances are that you still need cover).
- Have you thought about the cost of life insurance when you are older? The price of life insurance is directly related to risk, and one of the main risks is age. It is simple, the older you are the more you pay. If you cancel your life insurance policy now and try to buy a new one in a few years’ time, you might find you have to pay more for the same level of protection you originally had in place.
- If you become unhealthy you could end up ‘uninsurable’. It’s important to recognise the possibility that if you cancel your life cover now and your health deteriorates, you may find yourself refused insurance later.
I am a smoker, will that affect my life insurance premiums?
Of course it will. Everyone knows that the likelihood of an early death is increased if you smoke - therefore you will be charged more by an insurance company, however smoker rates do vary between insurance companies. If you smoke make you declare this in your quote and application otherwise a claim is likely to be invalidated. If you make a claim, the insurer will contact your Doctor for a report on your medical history - it is normal procedure. Within those records, your Doctor will have noted whether or not you smoked and this information will be passed on to your insurer.
What happens if you stop smoking?
If you stop smoking you may be entitled to non smoker rates - meaning your insurance premiums will reduce. Unfortunately you will have to re apply for insurance as a non smoker as the insurance company will want to be sure that you have stopped smoking permanently. Some insurers will accept that non smoking for 12 months is adequate evidence of having given it up, others will want a five year break. They may reduce your premium to non smoker rates or reduce them slightly as they still factor in some residual smoking mortality risk.
Nicotine Replacement Therapy
Please be aware that using Nicotine replacement therapies (NRT's) can still make you a smoker in the eyes of the insurer. The reason for this is that you are addicted to nicotine and therefore more likely to smoke. Once you have not used NRT for more than 12 months (in most cases) you can then apply for insurance as a non smoker.
Nicotine replacement therapies work by giving you a small amount of nicotine, but without the dangerous effects of inhaling tobacco smoke. This helps relieve the withdrawal symptoms and cravings for a cigarette that you get when you stop smoking, and allows you to get on with breaking the psychological habit of smoking. If you are physically addicted to nicotine, using NRT has been shown to almost double your chances of successfully quitting smoking.
Why have I been turned down or had my life insurance application declined?
The insurance companies that Lifebroker uses all have strict and clear guidelines regarding the way in which they underwrite or assess you insurance application. Some insurers are more rigid in their assessment than others and may not consider an application which another insurer will happily take. Other insurers specialise in certain areas therefore if you have been declined by one particular insurance company Lifebroker may still be able to get you life insurance. Lifebroker knows which is the best insurer to apply to, given your circumstances.
Why am I being charged more than normal for my life insurance?
In some cases an insurance company will charge you an extra premium for your life insurance (sometimes called “loading” your premiums). This is because they feel that your medical history, or your job or hobby, makes you a higher risk than normal. Therefore they will charge you extra to reflect that higher risk, or they may decline your application. However not all life insurance companies may assess your case in the same way, and we may be able to find an insurer who is willing to offer you cheaper cover.
Is there any insurer who will offer me life insurance?
Some insurance companies have very strict guidelines on what they are willing to accept. Other life insurers may have a different view. There are also a number of specialist insurers who may be able to consider your life insurance application, even if the more recognisably named insurers will not. We find out which insurers will consider your application and how much they are likely to charge. Unfortunately there may be times when it is not possible to get life insurance cover, but we will give you our honest assessment of your case, and whether this may change in the future.
What can I do to find out why I’ve been declined for life insurance?
If you are unclear as to why the life insurance company has turned you down, then please talk to us. It may be that we are able to identify the reason from what you tell us of your personal circumstances, medical history, your family’s medical history, and also which insurance company you have applied to.
There are also two other things which you can usefully do to identify the reason why your life insurance application has been declined or postponed, if you believe that the reason is a medical one.
Firstly, the insurance company to whom you originally applied will, if requested, send your doctor a letter explaining their “reasons why”. Therefore the first step is to ring the insurer, and ask them to send the Reasons Why letter to your GP. Then book an appointment with your doctor (giving time for the letter to arrive), to discuss what the insurer’s letter says. You can also ask your doctor about what is in your medical history that is causing the insurer concern.
Secondly, request a copy of the report that your GP sent to the insurer. Under the Access to Medical Reports Act, you are allowed to see what your GP has written about you. Some surgeries may charge a small fee for this, but if you are at all uncertain about the reasons why your life insurance has been declined or postponed, then a copy of your GP’s report is invaluable.
Why am I classed as a Special Risk for life insurance?
Special Risk groups for insurance purposes are people who, because of an existing or previous medical condition or because of the higher risk nature of their job or hobby, may not be able to get “standard” life insurance. They are also sometimes referred to as “Non-Standard Risks”.
A life insurance company may either charge you an extra premium, or they may decline your life insurance application completely. There are however specialist insurers who focus on Special Risk insurance, and so please talk to us and we will help you find an insurer who may be willing to take your application.
Am I allowed to see my doctor’s medical report on me, before it is sent to the life insurance company?
Yes, you are allowed under the Access to Medical Reports Act 1988 to see a copy of the report that your GP writes about you. However please bear in mind that if you request to see your medical report before it is sent to the insurer, you will need to contact your GP as soon as possible. This is because your doctor will keep the completed report for 21 days, so that you may see it. If you have not seen it within these 21 days, he will then send it on to the insurance company. Therefore you should contact your GP surgery as soon as possible to avoid delaying the process.
You are also able, under the same Act, to see a copy of the report which has already been sent to an insurer. This is particularly useful if you have been turned down by a life insurance company and are not sure why. The report that your GP sends to the life insurance company will contain all the relevant information on your medical history that they have based their underwriting decision on.
Do I have to tell the insurers everything on my life insurance application?
With life insurance, it is essential that you tell the insurance company everything that they ask – answering each question carefully, truthfully and completely. If you are not sure whether to mention something, then mention it. It is better to give the insurer more information and detail than they need, than to omit something which may cause them not to pay out on your policy when you die. Let the insurance company decide what is important and relevant.
What is underwriting and how does it work?
The underwriting of a life insurance policy is the process by which the life insurance company decides whether you meet their criteria, whether they are prepared to insure you, and if so, how much they are going to charge you.
Each life insurance company will have strict criteria against which they will assess you, for example your height to weight ratio. An underwriter will check your medical and personal history against these criteria, and then will decide what premium they are going to charge you. There will be a standard non-smoker and a standard smoker rate, but the insurance company may “rate” your premium, or charge you extra, because of your health or because you may take part in a dangerous hobby or pastime.
What does Utmost Good Faith mean in life insurance terms?
Utmost Good Faith in life insurance terms means that both the customer and the insurance company understake to be completely honest with each other and not withhold or partialy withould information. Any breech of Utmost Good Faith could be used to invalidate the policy. Under such circumstances you could lose any right to cliam, have the policy cancelled and lose any previously paid premiums.
You are required to be completely honest when applying for life insurance and disclose all relevant personal and medical information, including any previous health problems you have had. Unless you are completely truthful in your life insurance application, there will be a risk that your life insurance company will not pay out when a claim is made against the policy. Don’t risk it – tell them everything.
How long can a life insurance policy term last?
A term life insurance policy could typically have a term from 1 year up to about 40 years.
The maximum term offered by the insurer may reduce depending upon the age of the insured person. Most providers tend not to offer a term beyond the age of 85.
If you choose a term of between one and five years, you may lose some benefits. The obvious example would be a life insurance policy where terminal illness benefit may be withdrawn. Terminal illness benefit would normally pay on the diagnosis of a terminal illness. However, the policy would still pay out on the death of the person insured.
There are more complex policies known as Whole of Life policies which will cover you for your entire life no matter what age you are as long as you continue to pay the premium. These polices normally have to be set up before the customer is aged 80.
When will a life insurance policy pay out?
The life insurance policy will pay out if the insurable event occurs during the term of the policy. This means that if you bought a life insurance policy to cover you for 20 years and you died after 10 years, then the policy would pay out.
The policy will normally cease at this point, once a claim has been made. This is typically the case even if you have several events insured in one policy, for example a husband and wife insuring each other against death or critical illness.
It is possible however to buy a policy that would continue to offer insurance even if a claim against it has already been made.
We are able to provide all types of policy; please talk to us if you are in any way uncertain.
How much will a life insurance policy pay out?
A decreasing term policy gets its name from the fact that the sum assured gradually reduces over the term of the policy. Whilst at first you may wonder why anybody would want such a policy, if you consider that if you are using the policy to protect a debt like a repayment mortgage, you will realise that the amount you owe your mortgage lender will also reduce over the years. This therefore makes these policies suited to any situation where the actual amount you require to be paid out will reduce over time.
When a decreasing policy is used to protect a mortgage or other liability, the policy has a built-in interest rate associated with it. These interest rates are typically 7% - 10%, but it is possible to get providers to quote using different interest rates. The sum assured therefore reduces based on an assumption that you are paying an interest rate of 10% on your mortgage. As long as interest rates do not go above 10%, then in the event of a claim there should be at least enough money to repay your mortgage. It should be noted that if interest rates went above 10% for a considerable period of time, then in the event of a claim you may not receive all the money you need to repay your mortgage.
If you buy a level term policy then the full sum assured will pay out should you die during the policy term.
Are there any events when a life insurance policy would not pay out?
Life insurance policies are relatively straightforward contracts. Therefore most of the things that could stop the policy paying out are in the hands of the applicant.
The policy would not pay out if:
it was discovered that you were not truthful with all the information you provided either at the time of application or claim;
If it were proved you were aware of a condition previously to taking out the policy. For example if you suspected you had a heart condition and purchased a policy before consulting your doctor;
if you stop paying the premiums or your premiums are in arrears;
if it was considered you were in any way culpable for bringing on the insurable event.
Suicide may not be covered by some life insurance companies.
How much will a life insurance policy cost?
Most insurance quotes are given based on standard rates. This means that the premium quoted will be based upon obvious factors such as your sex, age, occupation and whether you smoke or not. Because the quote is not based upon any medical underwriting, it cannot be guaranteed until the insurance company issue you with acceptance terms.
On application, the insurance company will fully assess your application including any medical reports or tests as necessary.
Once the policy has been underwritten, the insurance company will issue formal terms to you, including the monthly premium. Whether the premium remains the same during the term of the policy will depend on whether you have selected a guaranteed or reviewable policy. A guaranteed premium is exactly what you would expect, namely the premium will be the same throughout the life of the policy. A reviewable policy will start out with an initial premium (normally cheaper than the guaranteed premium), but after a certain period the insurance company will review the policy. At this point they could adjust the premium you are required to pay.
If you want to protect the policy against the impacts of inflation, or have other reasons to gradually increase the value of the policy, you could choose to “index” the policy. This means that each year the benefit will increase in line with a known index, such as the Retail Price Index (RPI) or an agreed percentage. With an indexed policy both the benefit and the premium will increase year on year. There will be other charges for administration and running of the policy. These are included in the monthly premium. You will be able to see details of these charges in the illustration we provide to you.
Are there any other benefits I can add to my life insurance policy?
Most life insurance policies will allow you to add several benefits to your policy. Obvious examples are Critical Illness insurance and terminal illness benefit. There is however one additional benefit offered by some providers that may be of interest to you, which is Waiver of Premium. This benefit will continue to pay the premiums on the policy should you be in a position where you are unable to work due to accident or sickness for a defined period (typically 6 months). The premiums will continue to be paid for you until you recover, or the policy term lapses, or you reach a specified age, typically 60.
Can I increase the amount of benefit I receive from a life insurance policy?
The sum assured is set and underwritten at the outset of the life insurance policy. If you decide that you simply want to increase the level of cover for personal reasons, it may be difficult to do so using your existing policy without further underwriting.
Some insurance providers will allow you to increase the level of cover without underwriting if certain events occur in your life. This is known as a “Guaranteed Increase / Insured Option”. The increase will be restricted to certain limits, but it will nevertheless give you the increased cover you require.
Typical events are :
Becoming a parent or having another child
Can you get Life Insurance for overweight people?
The majority of standard insurance companies may not consider offering life insurance if your BMI or Body Mass Index is above a certain level. Each insurer will have a maximum BMI that they will consider. In the UK, people with a BMI between 25 and 30 are categorised as overweight, and those with an index above 30 are categorised as obese. People with a BMI of 40 or more are described as morbidly obese.
We are usually able to obtain Life Insurance for overweight people with a Body Mass Index of up to 55, sometimes higher. We specialise in finding life insurance, critical illness cover, income protection insurance and travel insurance for overweight people. Just give us a call and we can help.
What is the aim of a critical illness insurance policy?
Critical illness policies exist to help you when you have an illness that is going to have a major impact upon your life. All the major illnesses that could have a serious detrimental impact on your lifestyle are normally covered. Obvious examples are heart attacks, strokes and cancer. Each insurer will publish their own list and you should check this for specific conditions you want covered.
They therefore provide a one off cash lump sum for you to use as you see fit. Many people recognise that should they suffer a critical illness they may not be able to work again, in such circumstances they could also lose their home if they have not repaid their mortgage. Most people will therefore set the level of critical illness benefit to at least match the amount they owe on their mortgage.
However some conditions are not covered, even though being diagnosed with the condition may be traumatic. The most obvious examples are some forms of cancer.
Fortunately, due to medical advances, some cancers are now treatable and therefore these cancers will be excluded on most providers' policies. It is important to stress that the more serious cancers are still included.
Whilst there may be a few variations between providers on the conditions covered, most reputable insurers create their lists in line with those illnesses considered critical by the medical profession and The Association of British Insurers.
When can I make a claim on a critical illness insurance policy?
If you are diagnosed with a critical illness, then a claim should be made.
Some insurers will pay out immediately; others may require you to survive for a period after the onset of the first symptoms. This is typically for a period of 30 days.
Many insurers will also include terminal illness benefit in the policy. This will pay the sum assured if you are diagnosed with a terminal illness with a life expectancy of less than 12 months (irrespective of whether it is on the critical illness list or not).
What critical conditions are normally covered on a critical illness insurance policy?
Please remember that this is a typical list of conditions covered on most critical illness insurance policies, but it is not definitive. If you are keen to make sure a specified condition is covered, then please make us aware.
Also, just because a disease is not on our list, does not mean that cover cannot be obtained. For example, some insurers cover Creutzfeldt-Jacob Disease (CJD commonly known as Mad Cow disease) - we have not included it in our list below because many insurers do not cover it.
- Alzheimer’s Disease
- Aorta Graft Surgery
- Aplastic Anaemia
- Bacterial Meningitis
- Benign Brain Tumour
- Blindness; Cancer (normally malignant types only)
- Chronic Lung Disease
- Coronary Artery By-Pass Surgery
- End Stage Kidney Failure
- End Stage Liver Failure
- Heart Attack
- Heart Valve Replacement or Repair
- HIV/AIDS (some exclusions)
- HIV/AIDS Blood Transfusion
- Loss of Limbs
- Loss of Speech
- Major Organ Transplant
- Motor Neurone Disease
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Parkinson’s Disease
- Progressive Supranuclear Palsy
- Third Degree Burns
- Total and Permanent Disability
How do life insurance companies assess Permanent Total Disability?
Your critical illness insurance policy will include a series of activities or functions that determine whether you are classed as disabled. Normally if you are unable to perform three of these functions without assistance you will be classed as disabled and the policy will pay out.
Please also see the Own or Any Occupation section.
These tests are know as “functions of daily living” - however insurers will test them differently.
As a comparison, one insurer uses the following "functions of daily living":
Walking; Bending; Communicating; Reading; Writing and Climbing.
In this instance, Climbing means “having the ability to climb a flight of 12 stairs without stopping or suffering severe discomfort”.
Another insurer uses the following:
Walking; Standing; Use of a Pen Pencil or Keyboard; Hearing; Speech and Vision.
It is important when you first take out the policy that you are happy with the tests for disability.
What does Own Occupation or Any Occupation mean in my life insurance policy?
Some critical illness and life insurance policies require you to state if the policy is to be on an Own or Any Occupation basis. This Own or Any criteria puts an additional layer of assessment into determining Permanent Total Disability.
Disability benefit may or may not be payable depending on whether you selected a policy that had an “Own” or “Any” occupation definition.
If your policy has an Own Occupation definition, then it will pay out if, in the opinion of the insurer, you are unable to continue your own occupation and this will continue to be permanent.
A policy that has an Any Occupation definition will only pay out if, in the opinion of the insurer, the person insured is unable to pursue any occupation and will be permanently unable to do so.
To use an example, it may be that a taxi driver is no longer able to drive following an accident, but despite their disability they could be employed in a different job.
If the policy was set up on an Own Occupation definition, then the policy will pay out, but it would not pay out if it was on an Any Occupation definition.
Nevertheless, even if the policy was on an Any Occupation definition, if the policyholder fails the "functions of daily living" tests mentioned in the previous section, the policy should still pay out.
Are there any instances when my critical illness insurance policy would not pay out?
You run the risk of your critical illness insurance policy not paying out if:
You don’t maintain the premiums
You were found to be untruthful, either at the time of application or claim
Your condition is not covered in the policy
Most insurers will not pay a claim from a cause that arises whilst you are living abroad for more than 12 months
Most policies contain a clause that says it will not pay if your claim results from: drug abuse or self-harm, HIV/AIDS (unless named groups, blood transfusion or assault), war and civil commotion.
- Free ServiceOnly pay the insurance premium we quote
- Instant QuotesLive comparison of leading companies
- Apply OnlineInstant underwriting available
- All Major Companies
Lifebroker guarantees to:
- Offer better value than going direct to the insurance company
- Save you time, money and the hassle of shopping around
- Rebate commission
- Store your personal information securely
- Not pass on or sell your personal information
64-66 Wingate Square
London SW4 0AF
Our business hours are:
8am - 8pm Monday to Friday
08442 43 53 63
08442 43 53 64
Calling from overseas:
+44 (0)20 7501 1930