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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Income Protection Update

We have provided some answers below to commonly asked questions. Please check your policy documents and policy schedule to understand in more detail all the features of your policy.

Your Income Protection plan with Shepherds Friendly is designed to pay you benefit when you are incapacitated by illness and as a result are unable to work. If you are not fit and able to work, you may be able to make a claim for benefit. When you make a claim, you will need to prove to us that it is your illness or injury that is preventing you from being fit and able to work and not any other reason.

When can I make a claim?
To make a valid claim you must be incapacitated by illness or injury and as a result are unable to work and have suffered a loss of income. We do not pay benefit unless your symptoms last longer than the waiting period. (see below)

Am I covered for self-isolation?
No. your income protection plan only pays benefits when you are incapacitated by illness or injury and as a result are unable to work. If you are unable to work for any other reason, such as being in isolation, looking after dependents or if your previous job is no longer available, the plan does not provide benefits.

Am I covered for a reduction in my income caused by being put on reduced hours, or put on the Furloughed scheme, or the Self-Employment Income Support scheme?
No. Only loss of income caused by incapacity due to injury or illness is covered by the plan. If your income has reduced since you took out the plan, you must tell us.

What is a waiting period?
You will find your waiting period on your policy schedule, or by using our online tool. This is the period (in days or weeks) that you chose to wait (following the first day of your incapacity) before benefit is paid to you.

By way of example, if you chose a 4 week waiting period, you will not be entitled to receive benefits until the 5th continuous week of your incapacity.

If your incapacity does not last longer than your waiting period, you will not be paid any benefits.

Do I need a sicknote?
Yes. You need to provide us with medical evidence for each day of your incapacity including throughout your wait period. We will currently allow you to self-certify for the first 7 days of your incapacity. We will also agree to review any medical evidence that you provide to support your incapacity if you are not able to obtain a GP certificate (for example a hospital admission record).

Will you accept a 111 isolation certificate as evidence of incapacity?
No. The policy does not provide cover if you are unable to work because you are isolating for your own benefit or others and have no symptoms.

Do I need to provide evidence of my loss of income?
Yes. You will need to provide evidence of your loss of income and that it has been caused by your incapacity.

I have become unemployed but I am now sick, can I make a claim?
In most cases no. Your incapacity needs to have been the cause of you stopping work and losing income. You need to be engaged in paid employment at the start of your incapacity unless your policy includes house persons benefit. If it does and you can prove you have been unable to perform the activities of daily living for longer than your wait period, you may be able to make a claim. Please check your policy terms and schedule.

How do I make a claim?
The easiest way to make a claim is to use our online claim request form. Alternatively, you can email [email protected] Our claims team is extremely busy at the moment, so please allow up to five working days for a response.

For anyone who has been affected financially by the coronavirus, we’ve put together some useful content highlighting key updates from the Government that are aimed reducing financial loss for individuals at this unprecedented time. You can access that here.

Last updated 09/04/2020

Please note: All information within our news stories is correct at the time of publication, and we make every effort to keep content accurate. However sometimes information may be out of date. You should not rely on this information when making financial decisions as no financial advice has been given.