Underwriting is a term used by insurance providers which refers to the use of medical information to evaluate an application for cover.
For Private Medical Insurance, there are three main ways in which providers can underwrite the policies, which are as follows:
At the point of application, you would disclose your medical history to the provider to asses and thus they will decide whether there is anything to exclude from the cover.
At the point of application, minimal information is required. The cover automatically excludes any condition for which you have seen a medical practitioner or received treatment for in the last five years. The excluded condition may then be covered at a later date, assuming no treatment or review has occurred within two years from when the policy commenced.
If you have an existing PMI policy then there is also the option to use Continued Personal Medical Exclusion (CPME) underwriting. This allows you to transfer any personal exclusions in place on your current policy and does not add any new ones. A copy of your most recent insurance certificate would be required, and it is at the insurers’ discretion as to whether this option can be used.
You also need to be aware that virtually all providers will exclude cover for an illness or injury which you are currently receiving treatment for and are likely to require long term, or a condition whereby symptoms are expected to arise in the future – these are known as chronic conditions.
There are also general exclusions which most providers apply to their policies, where they will not cover things such as cosmetic surgery, childbirth or self-harm. Please refer to the provider’s Key Features Document for a full list of general exclusions applied to the policy.
There are pros and cons to each underwriting method, which is why speaking to one of our advisers may be beneficial to you. As a whole of market broker, our advice team can research the insurer most suited to your needs and recommend which type of underwriting would provide you with the best policy possible.
*The exact amount of commission and sum to be returned to you by cheque will be confirmed after commencement of the policy. Only an indication of this figure can be provided before this time. Please note, the percentage to be returned will not change, however until full underwriting and start date have been applied to the policy, we cannot be sure of the exact commission amount.
We can offer cover through the following Insurers: BUPA | VitalityHealth | The Exeter | Aviva Health | General & Medical |April UK |AXA
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