Positive Insurance – By Chris Morgan

Positive Insurance – By Chris Morgan

There’s great confusion over the types of Insurance that HIV Positive people can obtain. Here’s the Positive Finance guide to personal insurances. Home and Car Insurance have not been included, as these are not related to your health status and can be obtained without medical underwriting.

Life Assurance

All life Assurance Companies ask whether you are HIV Positive or have Aids. Upon answering this question, some companies will decline for cover. However, currently around a third of insurers will consider applications from HIV Positive people.

This is the question you will be asked on application forms. “Have you ever tested positive for HIV/AIDS or are awaiting the results of such a test?” Until recently insurers have not appeared interested in insuring HIV Positive people.

Therefore the market for HIV Life Assurance is relatively new and still developing. If you took out Life Assurance and you were HIV negative at outset and have subsequently become HIV Positive, then your policy is likely to still be valid.

Critical Illness / Income Protection / Sickness Cover / Private Medical Insurance

When applying for any of these types of insurance you will be asked the same question as if applying for Life Assurance. Insurers are still reluctant to offer cover to people who are HIV Positive on these ‘health’ related policies.

Unlike Life Assurance the benefits on these types of policies paid do not cover HIV and AIDS. In many circumstances it would be difficult to determine whether or not a claim was ‘HIV related’, or not.

However, many Critical Illness Cover policies do normally cover medical professionals, in the event of industrial accident. It’s very important to check the terms and conditions if you specifically want this type of cover.

Travel Insurance

Many Travel Insurance policies exclude people with AIDS and HIV; care should be taken when buying cover for your trip. You should seek specialist advice from an insurance provider that takes into consideration ‘Pre- Existing’ medical conditions.

Many policies offered through High Street Travel Agents do not consider the needs of people with HIV. You should look at the terms and conditions closely and pay special attention to any pre existing condition clauses.

This is an example of a generic exclusion, normally in a policy brochure.

“Any claim arising from heart-condition, high blood pressure or breathing problems, or a malignant disease that has been diagnosed, existed or treated before you bought the policy, unless we agree in writing”

There are only a few Travel policies that have specific HIV / AIDS inclusion clauses. They are underwritten on the basis that conditions are declared up front and discussed with the underwriting team.

These policies will cost more than standard premium rates, but are covering medical expenses whilst you’re abroad. Some offer single trip cover, whilst others offer annual trip insurance, useful if you travel more than a couple of times a year.

Loan & Credit Card Protection

Many people take out a personal loan without being offered Protection Insurance. This insurance can be expensive in relation to your monthly loan payment. Especially if the benefits are of little use to you!

These policies pay benefits in the event of sickness, accident, and unemployment.

Policies excluding HIV and AIDS are commonplace. Clauses and Exclusions are not very clear and anybody taking these types of policies should investigate thoroughly before signing.

You should not feel that insurance is an obligation of the loan and if pushed by the provider to take cover. You should point out that you’ve applied for cover before and been declined due to a pre-existing medical condition. The lender does not need to know any more than that.

Mortgage Repayment Protection

Mortgage Repayment Protection is designed to pay benefits in the event of you being made redundant or not being able to work due to sickness.

Most policies contain exclusion clauses for HIV and AIDS for both pre-existing conditions and diagnosis after starting the policy. Most policies will ask on the application form if you’ve tested Positive for HIV / AIDS. If you answer this question, you will be declined for cover.

Unemployment protection is relevant to people with HIV as this is not a health related policy and is linked to redundancy. You should not take a Mortgage Repayment Protection Policy that covers both Unemployment and Sickness. You should seek a policy that allows you to just cover Unemployment on a stand-alone basis.

Where to get advice?

Chris Morgan is the Marketing Manager of our sponsors Compass Mortgage & Insurance Services and was a consultant to the Association of British Insurers HIV Working Group for over five years. He may be contacted by phoning 0845 474 3075 by email chris@compassindependent.co.uk or Web www.compassindependent.co.uk

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