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Critical illness insurance with family history of breast cancer?


Re: Critical illness insurance with family history of breast cancer?


all companies selling a product called Critical Illness in the UK must as a minimum use a standard definition for cancer (look for something called an ABI definition) or one better, called ABI+. These would both cover your wife for all invasive breast cancer.

Some will also cover her for DCIS, under a different section, usually for a reduced amount of benefit. DCIS definitions vary, some require treatment by mastectomy, others will pay for just WLE (lumpectomy).

she does not have to mention any genetic test.
They will all also ask about family history, but only usually in her mother or sisters. Not usually asked about grandparents. Depending on the age her mother was diagnosed she may need to pay extra for the cover (definitely if her mother was under age 50 when she was diagnosed).
Your wife must mention any investigations she has had for cysts, breast lumps etc, even if they were benign.
There is a website called unbiased.com which can point you in the direction of a good independent financial adviser who can help you through the application process.

As well as Critical illness cover think about whether you need an income if your wife (or you) are unable to work due to illness, and also talk to an adviser about this. If you look at various threads here the state gives you very little benefit.

Pm me if you need any more info.



Re: Critical illness insurance with family history of breast cancer?

Hi Robert,
I would suggest you contact the Breast Cancer Care helpline and look at their booklet on family history. I have a brca1 mutation but did not know this until after my mortgage, insurance etc. As I understand it there is a moratorium re this - this is explained in the booklet. Here is the link to the booklet:
Here is what it says in case I can't do the link:
Insurance and
genetic test results
Until 2014, there is a moratorium (temporary ban)
on insurance companies asking you for any results
of predictive genetic tests on the breast cancer genes
BRCA1 and BRCA2 when you take out life, critical
illness or income protection insurance.
Insurers do not use information from predictive genetic test
results when setting premiums for private medical insurance,
travel insurance or long-term care policies. The moratorium is
reviewed every three years by the Department of Health and the
Association of British Insurers and is due to be reviewed in
2011. To date the moratorium has been extended each time.
Insurance companies also cannot ask you to take a predictive
genetic test or for the results of any predictive test taken by
a relative.
However, insurance companies can ask you about your own
medical history and your family medical history. They are
permitted to seek, with your consent, access to certain family
medical history, diagnostic (but not predictive) genetic test
results and medical reports from your GP. In some cases,
insurance companies may ask you to undergo a medical
examination. Insurers will usually only ask your GP for first
degree family history information on their report forms. First
degree relative means your mother, father, sisters, brothers and
any children. In some cases, insurers can ask for wider family
medical information (beyond your first degree relatives).
Any genetic test you have taken as part of a research study is not
considered part of your medical care, therefore insurers agree
that customers will not be required to disclose any predictive or
diagnostic test results acquired as part of clinical research.
You are only required to disclose health information at the time
you take out an insurance policy up until the policy starts. After
your policy starts, you have no obligation to disclose any
additional information, including the results of genetic tests,
to your insurer unless you decide to change insurers.
For information about diagnostic and
predictive genetic testing see page 31.
Insurance and genetic test results
66 Your guide to UK services for people with a family history of breast cancer
If an insurer receives the result of a predictive genetic test, the
case must be referred to the insurer’s genetics expert, who is fully
trained in the rules and regulations on using this information.
This expert (called the Nominated Genetic Underwriter) has
access to trained medical clinicians, whom they can call on for
additional expertise if needed.
Every case is considered individually and the premium you pay
will depend on the type of insurance policy you are buying, how
long that policy will stay in force and the likelihood that the event
you are insuring yourself against will happen. Therefore, it is
often useful to shop around. You can either make enquiries to
various insurance companies yourself or you can use an
Independent Financial Adviser (IFA ). IFA s will make enquiries on
your behalf and will offer you independent advice on which
company offers the best policy for you.
What if my genetic test result could help
reduce my premium?
If you have taken a predictive test and the result was favourable
(negative), insurance companies are not obliged to take this into
account. This means that each insurance company will decide
how to deal with this situation on an individual basis.
Similarly, if you have a family history of breast cancer and have
had risk-reducing surgery, you can choose to tell your insurer
about your situation. Some insurers may take this into
account, but they are not obliged to.
What the
guidelines say:
genetic tests and
Customers will not be required to
disclose the results of predictive
genetic tests for policies up to
£500,000 of life insurance, or
£300,000 for critical illness
insurance, or paying annual
benefits of £30,000 for income
protection insurance.
Concordat and Moratorium on Genetics and
Insurance, Department of Health and Association
of British Insurers, 2005
Customers will not be asked to,
nor be put under any pressure to,
undergo a predictive genetic test
in order to obtain insurance.
Concordat and Moratorium on Genetics and
Insurance, Department of Health and Association
of British Insurers, 2005
sa y
It can be difficult to buy certain types
of insurance, so although it takes
time, it’s best to shop around.
Breakthrough Campaigns & Advocacy
Network Member
More support and information



Critical illness insurance with family history of breast cancer?

Hi all,

Thank you for reading this and helping...

My Wife has a family history of breast cancer (both her mam and grandmother had it). My wife is 30 years old.
I want to get life and critical illness cover to cover her should the worst happen. HOWEVER, I have been looking at the different insurance companies (e.g. AVIVA, legal and general etc..) and their wording for breast cancer is really complicated and I feel like I need a medical degree to understand this. There are also stories on these forums of insurance companies trying to wriggle out of claims.

The insurnace companies all seem to cover different severities of breast cancer and now I am totally lost about what to do?

Basically I just want to cover my Wife should she get the cancer no matter how severe it is. Can anyone recommend an insurance company to use? or a good advisor who specialises in this? A helpline to use?

Thank you, Robert