Collaboration across the insurance sector set to make protection insurance more widely available
21st January 2020
A collaboration between BIBA, insurers, protection insurance groups and brokers, charities and other stakeholders leads to a new agreement to help people with disabilities or medical conditions access protection insurance.
At the launch of its 2020 Manifesto: Access, in the Houses of Parliament on 21 January 2020, the British Insurance Brokers Association (BIBA) also launched a new signposting agreement on access to protection insurance.
In October 2018, BIBA along with other industry bodies, firms and charities came together at the Department of Work and Pensions’ Caxton House offices and committed to the Access to Insurance Working Group Caxton House Statement, which aimed to improve access to protection insurance.
A cross-sector working party on access to insurance, chaired by BIBA was convened to develop a signposting system for consumers, supporting consumer groups and charities to enable easier access guidance and advice about protection insurance from protection specialists. The group also sought buy-in from the wider insurance sector, to encourage greater signposting support and promotion.
Drawing on BIBA’s experience under the successful Agreement on Age and Insurance and a desire by specialist providers to help people obtain vital covers such as life insurance, income protection and critical illness insurance, resulted on 21 January 2020 to the launch of a voluntary agreement on signposting.
The 26 signatories to the Agreement on access to protection insurance for people with pre-existing medical conditions and disabilities comprises both regulated providers of insurance and supporting bodies. The latter will encourage support of the ethos of the agreement and promote its benefits, while the providers will signpost customers that they cannot help because of their medical condition or disability towards a firm that can help.
Graeme Trudgill, BIBA Executive Director said: “BIBA is ideally positioned to help those with medical conditions find their way to a specialist provider to help them access the cover they need, and we committed in our manifesto to launch a signposting agreement. This is the culmination of a year of discussion and collaboration across different stakeholders; all with a strong desire to help those most in need. The fact that we have been able to launch this signposting system today will make a difference to thousands of people that may previously have thought protection insurance was out of their reach.
“I’m tremendously grateful to everyone around the workstream for their commitment, input and determination to make this happen.”
Johnny Timpson, Insurance Disability Champion, added: “This is absolutely the right thing to do and will not only make a positive impact on many lives but will raise levels of trust in the insurance sector. Now the work has started to educate those in the sector and its customers on the existence of the agreement and to get as many firms as possible on-board.”
Alan Knowles, Managing Director of Cura Financial Services and Chair of the Protection Distributors Group concluded: Specialised firms have the experience and expertise as well as the appetite to find solutions for those people who, because of a medical condition or disability can find obtaining suitable protection insurance a challenge. The launch of this agreement is great for customers and the insurance industry alike.”
The Agreement on access to protection insurance is voluntary. More information about it and how to access protection insurance can be found here.