The impact of losing a loved one, becoming seriously ill or injured affects far more than just a consumer’s financial life. How can advisers make sure their clients get all the support they need in difficult times? This week we look at which insurers provide counselling and other support services, so clients get more than just financial help.

These add-on services are actually a great way of demonstrating that when choosing the best protection policy, even if the contract may be for life only, the cheapest policy is rarely best value. If someone cares enough to take out a life insurance policy, it is reasonable to assume that they will be concerned about more than just their loved one’s financial well-being. For many, emotional support may be just as desirable to come to terms with their situation. Increasingly insurers feel an obligation to help clients in as many ways as possible when they need it. The last few years have seen a range of extra services introduced to help clients. Counselling is just one example of such a benefit, however the difference in how the services are provided by insurers can be substantial.

Several third parties work with insurers to provide counselling services. These are often linked with charities or specialists in order to source the best possible support for clients based on their needs. They include: 

Health Assured Workplace Options LifeWorks RedArc

AEGON

LV=

Aviva

Zurich

Canada Life

Guardian

Legal & General

Old Mutual Wealth

Royal London

Scottish Widows

*AIG do not work with a specific third party

For some clients speaking to a counselor face-to-face may be daunting, however others may prefer a more personal service. When giving advice you may be unlikely to know what your client may require at their time of need but it may be useful to understand the options.

Protection contracts are usually long-term policies and insurers look to support their clients through the difficult times they may encounter. Bereavement or coping with an injury or illness might spring to mind as the core reason for clients needing counselling, however insurers list a range of areas where their counselling can help: 

Death, serious illness, injury or any other hardship can have an impact on the whole family not just the person affected. Like many of the other emotional support services offered by insurers, counselling is often not just offered to the main life assured(s) but to their wider family also. This means that the life assured’s partner/spouse/civil partner and children may be able to access the services to help them cope when times are tough. 

If protection is “all about the claim” considering the different ways in which clients can claim on their policy should be a must. The counselling services offered within protection policies highlight that insurers, now more than ever, are considering the emotional well-being of clients and providing valuable support not just at the point of claim but throughout their time as a client.

The fact that AIG, Legal & General, Royal London and Zurich offer counselling face-to-face, via telephone, video call or email means that clients can seek help via a route that suits them and makes them feel most comfortable.

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