Carers Missing Out on Payment Protection Payouts Warns British Insurance

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People in full-time employment who give up work to care for an immediate family member may be missing out on having their mortgage costs met via Payment Protection policies warns Simon Burgess from British Insurance.

Simon Burgess, MD British Insurance

The policies meet monthly mortgage costs should an accident, sickness or unemployment occur and the unemployment criterion is generally interpreted as being made unemployed by your employer. However, those opting to leave their job because of circumstances beyond their control, ie caring, are also covered.

People in full-time employment who give up work to care for an immediate family member may be missing out on having their mortgage costs met via Payment Protection policies warns Simon Burgess from British Insurance.

The independent Payment Protection Insurance (PPI) provider says although a number of insurers automatically provide carer cover in their Mortgage PPI, very few people realise what this means and fail to claim if they voluntarily leave work to become a carer for up to a year.

Burgess comments: "The policies meet monthly mortgage costs should an accident, sickness or unemployment occur and the unemployment criterion is generally interpreted as being made unemployed by your employer. However, those opting to leave their job because of circumstances beyond their control, ie caring, are also covered."

According to the charity Carers UK, around six million people - one in eight adults - are carers and over three million already juggle work with caring. Three in five people will become carers at some time and one in five will have to give up work. The Carers Allowance - £50.55 a week or £2,628.60 a year - replaces paid income, but many go without this because they're unaware or not informed of what's available.

In its 'In the Know' report, Carers UK found that 19% missed out on benefits within the first year. Burgess continues: "Over two million people start caring every year and I fear a number of them may have MPPI but do not realise they can claim on their policy. As a result, they're missing out and suffering financial hardship."

Carers UK predicts 60% more carers will be needed by 2037 and is concerned that if carers do not
get the financial and practical support they need, they are vulnerable to a poor quality of life. Burgess concludes: "Whilst this isn't a long term solution, it does provide a temporary mortgage repayment financial safety net in that first year and will help people keep their homes and give them time to sort out their finances.

"This type of cover could make a huge difference, so it's vital people check their policies. The State isn't always going to hand out money - insurers need to be more socially responsible and help where they can."

British Insurance's Mortgage Payment Protection policy has a five star rating from research specialist Defaqto who after scrutinising 103 MPPI policies placed it 'at the very top of the market' for its wide-ranging cover and support services.

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