As well as peace of mind, many insurance providers offer additional benefits that you may not know about. 
Whether we’re crossing the road or getting on a plane, we encounter risks every day. For many of us, life has felt more uncertain than ever over the past year as we continue to deal with the coronavirus pandemic. Although we can’t always control what’s happening in our lives, we can plan for the unexpected. 
 
By taking out a protection policy, you can safeguard your family’s finances if your situation changes. The main types of protection include: 
 
• Life cover – pays out a lump sum if you die 
 
• Health insurance – pays medical costs at a private hospital or private ward 
 
• Critical illness – pays a tax-free lump sum if you’re diagnosed with a major illness 
 
• Home contents and buildings – covers your home’s structure (including fixtures and fittings) and contents (furniture) 
 
• Income – pays out if you can’t work due to illness or injury 
 
As well as peace of mind, protection policies often come with added extras. We’ve highlighted examples of some of the perks you could receive when you take out a policy, even if you don’t make a claim. 

Welcome gifts 

When you sign up for a protection policy, some providers offer a welcome gift. 
 
For example, health insurers sometimes offer gadgets like an Apple Watch to help you track your activity – with some even offering a discount based on the amount of exercise you do each month. 

Discounts 

Many health insurers offer discounts on gym memberships and weight-loss programmes to help you embrace a healthier lifestyle. Some also offer you the option of taking a health check to reduce the amount you pay each month. 
It’s worth noting that when you take out a protection policy, your provider is likely to offer you discounts on other products such as pet or travel insurance. 

Additional healthcare options 

Some health insurers now cover complementary therapies such as osteopathy and acupuncture, giving you more treatment choices. In addition, counselling services are now included in most health insurance policies and many also give you the option to upgrade your hospital room if you need treatment. 

Will writing 

Some providers of life insurance give new policyholders the opportunity to draw up a will free of charge. 

Cover for children 

Many critical illness plans include free cover for dependent children. 

What support do insurers offer after the event? 

Illness and bereavement help. Many providers give free access to services offering practical and emotional support for those left behind after the death of the policyholder. 

Rehabilitation 

Insurers usually offer back-to-work support services, including physiotherapy, careers guidance or advice if you choose to go self- employed. If you’re returning to work following a mental health issue, providers will continue to cover counselling sessions for a set period of time. 
Key takeaways: 
 
• Insurance can give you peace of mind that you and your family will be financially secure if the unexpected happens, such as falling ill or being involved in an accident. 
• Many protection policies offer added extras, from smart watches and discounts on gym memberships and weight-loss programmes to access to complementary therapies like acupuncture. 
• After you’ve made a claim, providers usually offer services to help you or your family get back on track, including illness and bereavement help and rehabilitation services, such as physiotherapy. 
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