what can I do if I'm in the middle of buying a house - waiting for insurance

  • 1 reply
  • 10 subscribers

hi im in the middle of buying a house

and I'm waiting for investigations to decide if i actually have cancer which needs surgery to decide if i do have cancer or not

I'm in the process of the applying for a mortgage, and i haven't applied for income protection/life critical illness. 

some people have said, i wont be covered, but wouldn't this be against the disability and discrimination act?

is there a provider who will cover me?

  • Hello  ,


    Thanks for your enquiry. I’m sorry to hear about the uncertainty your health situation has caused.


    Just so you’re aware we’re not regulated by the FCA so we can’t recommend any financial products or services but hopefully you may find the following information helpful.

    Before shopping around for Life Insurance it’s worth being aware that it’s not normally compulsory to take out life insurance to obtain a mortgage, and there’s no requirement to discuss it with the mortgage adviser. For those who decide to take out a mortgage without having any life cover in place, it’s important to consider how family members would cope financially if something happens.


    Insurers can underwrite the policy in two different ways. The way in which they are underwritten often determines whether or not pre-existing medical conditions are covered: 


    • Moratorium underwriting

    This method often excludes claims relating to health conditions the member had, or recently suffered from, at the time the policy was taken out. The exclusion normally lasts for the first year or two of the policy (the ‘moratorium period’). 


    If a claim is made after that time, the health condition is usually covered, providing there are no further symptoms, medical advice or treatment during the moratorium period. 


    • Full medical underwriting

    This is a process an insurer uses to assess the likelihood of the insured person making a claim against the insurance.  


    The insurer may ask for information about the person’s health, lifestyle and the health of their close relatives. They may do this through questions and medical reports. Based on the assessment, the insurer decides whether to offer cover, what premium they will charge and any other special terms or restrictions to include. 


    It still may be possible to obtain cover but getting life insurance is usually more difficult after a cancer diagnosis as the insurance companies will be looking at the risk of a claim being made during the policy – an existing health condition like cancer increases this risk. You may find that the application will be more in-depth compared to if you’ve tried previously or if other people without a health condition have told you about theirs. The company may ask for medical reports and sometimes even an examination - how much information they will want will depend on the type of the cancer, the stage and length of time since it has been diagnosed etc.

    If the company thinks the risk is too high, they may decline to offer cover, or they may decline to start with and say they’ll look again later and reassess the application. Some may offer cover however put an exclusion on the policy stating that cancer would not be covered. If they do accept, they may increase the monthly payment they ask for. An insurance company is allowed to discriminate if there’s a greater insurance risk because of a person’s disability.

    It’s also worth thinking about what cover you may already have in place. Sometimes it’s easy to forget that cover may already be in place through death-in-service benefit with a current employer, or from pension schemes you may be a part of either now or in the past.

    As a rule of thumb, the longer someone is in remission for the more likely it is they will be offered cover. This can also have an impact on cost, so it’s worth bearing this in mind if you take cover out it may be worth reviewing periodically to see if it’s possible to obtain similar cover at a reduced cost.

    If cover is refused, it may be worth speaking to an Independent Financial Adviser who will be able to search the whole of the insurance market. Maybe check with family and friends to see if they can recommend an adviser.


    Alternatively, visit http://www.thepfs.org/yourmoney/find-an-adviser/ to find details of advisers in the area.


    When choosing a financial adviser, always check that they, and the company they work for, are authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) to provide financial advice.


    This information can be found on the FCA register:




    It’s also possible to get some insurance in place through Guaranteed Underwriting Life Policies. This type life insurance normally covers someone a smaller amount of money, usually around the cost of a funeral. The difference is that these policies are offered to people even if they have a pre-existing medical condition. People who are unwell with cancer or other health issues can be covered. However, these policies normally have a deferred period, which means for usually the first 1 or 2 years the policy wouldn’t pay out if the person covered dies but after this period has ended it would pay out the lump sum.



    I hope this helps you but if you need any more help please do let me know or call the Macmillan Support Line (freephone) on 0808 808 0000.


    You can respond by replying via this email or alternatively you can also talk to us via our webchat service.




    Kind regards.



    Will Quinn

    Financial Guide