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Unless you've been lucky enough to be on holiday over the last week, you would have come across the media channel's reports on Life Insurance.

The majority of reports have been related to unpaid insurance claims by CommInsure, with some comments extending to the broader insurance industry. 

As a result, the media has frightened consumers and understandably, many people who hold personal insurance are now curious and cautious of their own policies.

To give you some background; the majority of trauma claims paid are as a result of the major four illnesses - Heart Attack, Cancer, Stroke & other coronary related issues. This is why most of us have some form of life and/or trauma insurance. The successful payment of an insurance claim is based on the insured satisfying the medical definitions which are outlined in each insurer’s individual policy. These definitions can vary quite substantially between insurers. The particular issue being publicised at the moment relates to CommInsure’s definition of a “heart attack” as well as the resulting claim under a “terminal illness” definition.  

Many people hold insurance through their superannuation funds without understanding the underlying policy. Super funds established by employers that include insurance as part of the package sound great, especially as there is often no underwriting involved and the cover can be low-cost. However, members need to be aware that there may be potential traps. It is quite possible that some of these policies have specific definitions or requirements in regards to both retaining and claiming on the cover provided. It might sound like common sense, but you need to know what you are actually covered for, and this is relevant for any insurance policy you hold. As medical advances witness new conditions or ways to measure these conditions, you should also ensure that your insurance policies are being upgraded to capture these developments.

The provision of life insurance can be complex and should take into account individual needs and circumstances. It is therefore important to seek professional advice. Not only does a licensed adviser have the skills and knowledge to tailor the correct insurance to their client’s needs, they are also the best person to assist at claim time, ensuring the process is as efficient as possible and clients receive their full entitlement. 

For us at Choice Capital, this particular issue highlights that regular reviews form an integral part of your long term planning goals and strategies. We want to ensure you remain on the most appropriate path to meet your needs and goals and your policies remain comprehensive and leading within the industry, so if you have any questions or concerns at all, please get in touch with us.