Bought annual travel insurance? How would you feel if you developed cancer and your insurer either inflated your premium or cancelled your cover altogether?
Around 300,000 people develop cancer every year. But what’s even more depressing is that many will struggle to maintain their travel insurance, as most insurers will immediately impose an exclusion so the sufferer isn’t covered. That can’t be right.
You’ve just bought annual travel insurance to cover you for flight delays or lost baggage. What would you do if your insurer cancelled the policy or bumped up the premium you agreed to pay up simply because you developed a serious medical condition?
Covering the unexpected
I’ve come across so many cases of people who have suffered from this very problem. Think about it for a second; you book a holiday, get diagnosed with cancer sometime later, and your insurer presents you with a fait accompli.
It seems to go something like this: you’re told you have a serious condition, (how many things must be going through your mind at this point?) and somewhere on the list you compile is a call to your insurer. They pass you through to a medical screening call line. This asks you some set questions and then coldly informs you that you’re not covered for the condition you’ve developed.
That’s a bombshell. Surely insurance is there to cover the unexpected? And if ever there was a reason to take a break – and let’s be brutally honest, it could be your last – this is it. Yet the insurer pulls out all the stops to make your life worse.
Your insurer might offer you a cancellation, but that’s no good, because whoever you approach will take one look at what is now a pre-existing medical condition and charge near £2,000.
Assessing the risk
All this makes you ask – what’s the point of insurance? No one wants to pay it, but the reason we take it out is because it’s meant to offer protection if something emerges out of the blue.
So, when the rug’s pulled out from under you with a cancer diagnosis, you have to ask whether your insurer is being fair and reasonable. I don’t think they are. I think insurers are using onerous clauses in contracts to shirk their responsibilities.
Anyone who is diagnosed with a serious medical condition has one hell of a battle on their hands. Unfortunately, this pre-booked trip could be their last, but even if it isn’t, I can’t think of anyone who deserves a holiday more.
Insurers assess risk at the point of sale, it seems unfair that they can move the goal posts if circumstances change. Surely that’s wrong, don’t you think?