Insurance Ireland Life Members to Introduce New Code of Practice for Cancer Survivors Seeking Mortgage Protection Insurance

Insurance Ireland announces new Code of Practice for Underwriting Mortgage Protection Insurance for Cancer Survivors. Code will lead to a faster, more streamlined process for impacted cancer survivors.

 

Insurance Ireland Life Members to Introduce New Code of Practice for Cancer Survivors Seeking Mortgage Protection Insurance

  • Insurance Ireland announces new Code of Practice for Underwriting Mortgage Protection Insurance for Cancer Survivors. Code will lead to a faster, more streamlined process for impacted cancer survivors.
  • Code provides for cancer survivors’ ‘Right to be Forgotten’, meaning insurers will disregard a cancer diagnosis where treatment ended more than 7 years prior to their application or more than 5 years if the applicant was under 18 at the time treatment ceased.
  • Cover of up to €500,000 per (cancer-surviving) applicant in connection with a mortgage on a principal private residence. Data from Insurance Ireland members shows that over 90% of mortgage protection policies in Ireland are below €500,000.
  • While discussions regarding access to insurance for cancer survivors continue at European level, the Code of Practice goes beyond the proposed provisions for mortgage amounts of €200,000 or less and a period of 15 years since end of cancer treatment.
  • Insurance Ireland has worked with a number of stakeholders both here and across Europe to design a framework that appropriately balances the needs of cancer survivors without causing a reduction in availability of cover for other consumers.

 

April 3rd 2023.  Insurance Ireland and its members have today announced a Code of Practice to improve access to mortgage protection insurance for cancer survivors. This follows discussions with the Irish Cancer Society last summer regarding its 2021 report, highlighting that many cancer survivors do not feel that they can access the necessary life cover in order to be obtain a mortgage.

Insurance Ireland and its members believe that the Code will lead to a faster, more streamlined process for those impacted. They see the approach as a pragmatic solution that appropriately balances the needs of cancer survivors without causing a reduction in availability of cover for other consumers.

Insurance Ireland and its members also want to reassure those affected that, as things currently stand, it is not the case that all applicants who disclose a cancer diagnosis are automatically declined cover. Many mortgage protection applications of this nature are accepted at either standard rates or with an additional cost.

They are mindful, however, of the impact that a declined application can have on a cancer survivor, who has already faced a hugely challenging experience. As such, insurers were keen to play their part in developing an improved outcome for these customers, while also keeping in mind the needs and expectations of the entire customer base.

Under the Code, which applies to applications for policies on a mortgage on a principal private residence, relevant insurers will:

  • disregard a cancer diagnosis where treatment ended more than 7 years prior to their application or more than 5 years if the applicant was under 18 at the time treatment ceased;
  • allow for cover of up to €500,000 per applicant. Data from Insurance Ireland members shows that over 90% of mortgage protection policies in Ireland are below €500,000, which means that the vast majority of mortgage applicants will be applying for mortgage cover below this amount.

These are the minimum requirements for the application of this Code of Practice; an individual insurance firm may decide to go further if it so chooses.While discussions regarding access to insurance for cancer survivors continue at European level, the Code goes beyond the proposed provisions for mortgage amounts of €200,000 or less and a period of 15 years since end of cancer treatment.

Participating insurers commit to implementing this framework within six months. Insurance Ireland is continuing to engage with a number of stakeholders regarding various aspects of the Code, including appropriate independent oversight and governance of the provisions. However, insurers are keen to move ahead with the Code on a voluntary basis initially to ensure that barriers to access for many cancer survivors can be removed as soon as possible.

 

Insurance Ireland (Member Association) Company Limited by Guarantee trading as
Insurance Ireland. Registered in Ireland. No. 553048. Registered Office: Insurance Centre,
5 Harbourmaster Place, IFSC, Dublin 1. DO1 E7E8.

Insurance Ireland is an active member of the following:

© 2024 Insurance Ireland. All rights reserved. Website by WYLD