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Critical Illness Insurance 101

What is critical illness insurance?

Unlike life insurance, critical illness coverage is there for you while you're living. It provides you with a lump-sum payment to help with the cost of recovery should you become critically ill during the term of the policy. You receive the money when you need it most and you can use it any way you see fit.

What’s considered a critical illness?

While the list of covered critical illnesses varies by company, most policies include:

  • Cancer
  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • Heart bypass surgery
  • Kidney failure
  • Major organ transplant
  • Blindness
  • Deafness
  • Loss of speech
  • Paralysis
  • ALS - aka Lou Gehrig's Disease
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Coma
  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Parkinson's disease
  • Occupational HIV
  • Severe Burns
  • Loss of limbs

I have disability/medical/life insurance coverage already, why would I want critical illness insurance?

Critical illness insurance fills the void left by disability, medical and life insurance. Where --

  • disability insurance partially replaces your lost income

  • medical insurance pays for some of your medical expenses, and

  • life insurance pays your beneficiaries upon your death

-- critical illness insurance provides you with a lump-sum payment that can be used any way you and your family decide is best. You can use it to:

  • top-up your disability payments so your extended absence from work does not dip into your savings

  • keep your business going during your crucial recovery period

  • pay off your mortgage

  • renovate your home to accommodate a long-term disability

  • protect your savings or retirement plans

This list is by no means comprehensive. The simple fact is that you can do anything you wish with the money…it is yours and there are no stipulations.