Serious illness insurance will pay out if you get one of the specific medical conditions or injuries listed in the policy.

But be aware that not all conditions are covered and policy will also state how serious the condition must be.

Don’t confuse critical illness cover with life insurance, although they are sometimes sold together.

Examples of critical illnesses that might be covered include:

  • stroke
  • heart attack
  • certain types and stages of cancer
  • conditions such as multiple sclerosis.

Most policies will also consider permanent disabilities as a result of injury or illness.

It only pays out once and then the policy ends.

Some policies will make a smaller payment for less severe conditions, or if one of your children has one of the specified conditions.

What isn’t covered?

Some serious illnesses might not be covered, for example, some cancers and conditions not listed in the policy.

You probably won’t be covered for health problems you knew you had before you took out the insurance, and this type of insurance doesn’t pay out if you die.

What’s covered and what’s not, will be set out in the policy details so make sure you’re fully aware of them and that they cover your needs.

You should look at getting critical illness cover if:

  • you don’t have enough savings to tide you over if you become seriously ill or disabled
  • you don’t have an employee benefits package to cover a longer time off work due to sickness.
  • You might not need it if:
    • you have enough savings to fall back on and can cover expenses such as bills, loans, medical costs or a mortgage
    • you have a partner who can cover living costs and any shared commitments, such as a mortgage
    • you already have some cover included in as part of your employer’s employee benefits scheme.

How much does it cost?

Your monthly payments will depend on a number of factors, including:

  • age
  • the amount of cover you take out
  • whether you smoke or have previously smoked
  • health (your current health, your weight, your family medical history)
  • job (some occupations carry a higher risk than others and might mean you have to pay more each month.


What do I need to think about?

There are many things to consider when getting critical illness cover.

For example, how would you replace your income if you became unable to work?

Would you be able to pay to make your home wheelchair accessible if you needed to? How would you cover your mortgage or rent?

How much cover you need depends on your personal circumstances.

Need further information?

ERM Financial Services can provide you with all the information and guidance you need.

Contact the team at ERM Financial Services based in Malahide, Co. Dublin.

We give a one to one personable service to all our clients.