Guardian’s new combined life and critical illness (CI) policy has gone live on the IRESS, iPipeline and LifeQuote protection portals.
First announced on 10 October, the product enables a claim to be made in the event of the policyholder’s death or diagnosis of a critical or terminal illness, whatever comes first.
Guardian has also implemented changes to its CI definitions across its portfolio. Three full payment conditions have been added, together with improved wordings for three full payment conditions as well as two additional payment conditions. Child cover has been extended to the 23rd birthday without a requirement for full-time education.
Some changes have been made to bring its definitions in line with the market standard and make the policy more competitive. Claims for benign brain tumour will no longer be paid without some form of treatment; type 1 diabetes is reduced from a full payment condition to an additional payment condition; and skin cancer has been altered to require tumours of a certain size and smaller tumours will trigger a lower payment.
Adam Higgs, head of research at Protection Guru, said the changes overall are positive and reveals a commitment to existing clients who benefit from upgrades.
“It highlights what, in my opinion, is their biggest USP and that advisers can be assured that in recommending Guardian their clients will continue to benefit from a plan that is at least as comprehensive as the version of the plan available to future customers,” he added.
Alan Lakey, of CIExpert, added that the changes have served to reduce the claim potential, which enables premium reductions.
“This brings Guardian more into line with the other quality players and should encourage more advisers to consider them when assessing on a quality or a value-for-money basis,” he stated. “Nonetheless, the revised plan still stands as one of the very best using superior wordings and offering high quality benefits. Existing policyholders automatically receive the benefit of the improvements whilst enjoying the best of any competing condition wordings when claiming.”