Aviva pays over half a billion pounds in protection claims in 2013

Article date: 17 March 2014

  • Life insurance and critical illness claims total £505 million in 2013.
  • 99.3% of life insurance claims paid.
  • 13,600 customers and their families benefited from protection payments.

Aviva protection customers and their families received more than £505 million(1) through claims on life insurance and critical illness cover in 2013. This equates to around £1.4 million pounds a day, or £961 per minute. The data has been compiled using ABI industry guidelines, which have been introduced for the first time this year and provide customers with certainty that industry statistics have been calculated in a consistent way.

The annual total paid to Aviva life insurance and critical illness customers is the highest to date and shows a steady year-on-year increase. For example, the amount paid to life insurance customers has increased by 61%(2) over the past five years.

During 2013, Aviva paid £347 million to the families of life insurance customers who had died or been diagnosed with a terminal illness, and over £158 million to customers with critical illness (CI) cover(3).

The data reveals that around 13,600 families benefitted from life and CI claims during 2013. This includes 11,441 life insurance claims and 2,171 critical illness claims.

Over the year, the insurer paid 99.3% of life insurance claims and 92.9% of critical illness claims. Of critical illness claims which were not paid, 1.2% were declined due to misrepresentation (non-disclosure), and 5.9% for conditions not met.

Key statistics for 2013 include:

  • The average sum paid to critical illness customers was £72,947.
  • The average age of critical illness customers was 45 years for women and 48 years for men.
  • Cancer remains the most common cause of critical illness claims at 67%, followed by heart attack (11%), stroke (6%), multiple sclerosis (5%) and total permanent disability or ‘TPD’ (4%).

Robert Morrison, chief underwriter for Aviva says: “For some years now Aviva has been calling on the industry to report claims statistics in a standardised way, so it's great that guidelines have now been introduced by the ABI. With insurers now adhering to this code - or spelling out any reasons for not following it - this will allow customers and advisers to see clearly how providers compare.

“We're also very pleased to see how changes to our protection policies are increasing the number of claims paid. For example, last year we paid out £225,000 to customers with in-situ breast cancer. In 2013 we enhanced definitions around some of our most common critical illness conditions including heart attack, stroke, MS and some cancers. We’ve also broadened the terminal illness benefit on our life insurance policies(4) so we can only expect to see even more claims paid to our customers in the future.”

- Ends -

If you are a journalist and would like further information, please contact:

Melissa Loughran : Aviva Press Office : 01904 452791 : 07800 691947 : melissa.loughran@aviva.co.uk

Sarah Poulter : Aviva Press Office : 01904 452828 : 07800 691569 : sarah.poulter@aviva.co.uk

Notes to editors:

  1. All claims statistics are compiled using agreed ABI methodology. Life insurance claims statistics include terminal illness claims paid under these policies.
  2. Payments made to families of life insurance customers who had died or been diagnosed with a terminal illness totalled £216 million in 2008, compared to £347 million in 2013.
  3. Critical illness claims statistics include child critical illness and claims for total permanent disability.
  4. In December 2013 Aviva extended the scope of terminal illness benefit which is paid to life insurance customers if they are diagnosed with a terminal illness and expected to live less than 12 months. Previously customers were unable to claim under this benefit if they were diagnosed within the last 18 months of their plan, but this exclusion has now been removed on new policies.

About Aviva:

Aviva provides insurance, savings and investment products to 34 million customers worldwide.

We are the UK’s largest insurer with over 14 million customers and one of Europe’s leading providers of life and general insurance. We combine strong life insurance, general insurance and asset management businesses under one powerful brand. We are committed to serving our customers well in order to build a stronger, sustainable business, which makes a positive contribution to society, and for which our people are proud to work.

We are ranked as one of the UK’s top ten most valuable brands and Aviva Plc is in the top 10% of socially responsible companies globally in the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index.  In 2012 we invested £5.7m into our UK communities. One in three of our employees were involved in community investment activities which included giving nearly 30,000 hours.

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