Frequently asked questions:
Income Protection

Popular questions we get asked about our Income Protection plan

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Opening a plan

Who can apply for Income Protection?

Anyone from age 16 and over can apply for a plan. The maximum age allowed on application is 63. The only other requirements are that you have been registered with a UK medical practice for at least three years, are subject to UK taxation and hold a UK Bank or Building Society account.

Which jobs are covered?

You can apply for income protection no matter what your profession may be.

Information about the plan

How much will cover cost me?

The monthly premium you pay will depend on the percentage of your monthly income you want to cover and the waiting period you choose before you begin to receive benefits. Cover can start from as little as £5 a month which is our minimum premium.

How long will the cover last for?

The minimum term for a plan is five years, and the maximum term is limited by your age. Cover will cease when you reach age 68.

How much of my income will the plan cover?

If you are employed we can cover up to 70% of your regular gross income. If you are self-employed you can cover up to 70% of your net profit. Benefits will be paid to you monthly free of tax. You can also select to include inflation cover. The maximum benefit at the start of your Income Protection is £49,000 per year. The minimum benefit is determined by the requirement to have a minimum premium of £5 per month.

How do I cancel my plan?

You have 30 days in which to cancel your plan and we will refund any premiums paid. After this date, if you cancel your plan you will not receive any money back.

To cancel your plan please email our Member Services Team on [email protected] with your full name and plan number.

Please note: If you stop paying premiums under this plan your benefit will cease.

What is a Defaqto rating?

Defaqto is a financial information business which was established to help financial institutions and consumers make better informed decisions. They give financial products a Star Rating to indicate where a product or proposition sits in the market based on the quality and comprehensiveness of the features it offers. A 4 or 5-Star Rating indicates that a product or position represents one of the highest quality offerings on the market.

Will Shepherds Friendly help me get back to work?

We aim to make your claims experience as stress free as possible and do what we can to facilitate your return to work. This includes, in certain scenarios, us funding various rehabilitation treatments.

What happens if I stop paying my premiums?

If you do not pay your premiums, we will be unable to pay your benefit when you make a claim.

What is the waiting/deferred period?

The waiting period/deferred period is the length of time between the first day of your incapacity to the date when we start to pay your sickness benefit. If you are not sure of your waiting period, refer to your plan documents.

You can choose the waiting period at the start from 2 weeks, 4 weeks, 8 weeks, 13 weeks, 26 weeks and 52 weeks. The longer the waiting period you select, the lower your monthly premium will be.

Making a claim

How do I make a claim?

As soon as you think you may need to make a claim, please contact us by phone on 0800 526 249. The claims department will explain the claims process and send you a claim form.

How long will it take for the claim to be accepted?

If the relevant documents, and all supporting documents, are returned completed correctly then it is possible for us to accept your claim within five working days of receiving the documents from you. Upon acceptance we will contact you to let you know. If you are late in submitting a claim we will make the first payment as soon as we can, but we will not back date it to the start of the illness. However, we will not apply this condition if your incapacity has physically prevented you from meeting it or if you have been confined in hospital.

What if further information is required?

Every claim is different, and in some instances we may need to request medical information from your GP before accepting a claim. In this instance, we will contact your GP once we have received the required information back from you. Once your GP provides us with the information we require we will then update you within five working days about the decision.

What happens once my claim is accepted?

We will notify you about a successful claim in writing. Your sickness benefit will then be paid monthly in advance into the bank account from which the premiums for your plan are paid.

What happens if I die while outside of a claim period?

In the event that the insured dies outside of a claim period, then the plan will end. Our Income Protection Insurance has no investment element within it, meaning that there is no payment on death and no encashment value at any time.

How do I inform Shepherds Friendly of change of my home address?

In order to let us know of your change of home address, the plan holder can contact our customer services department on 0800 526 249.

How soon do I need to notify you about a claim?

It is important you notify us as soon as possible. However, we ask for at least 14 days notice of the first expected benefit payment, unless your incapacity has prevented you from submitting your claim.

What information will I need to give you when I contact you with a claim?

We will need your contact and plan details, as well as the full detail of the reason for your claim.

What evidence will you need when I need to make a claim?

When you need to make a claim, we will need an original medical certificate, your last 2 months wage slips and latest P60 if your are employed. If you are self employed, we will need your last 3 years account and tax returns.

We will also require a copy of your photo identity.

How quickly will I receive my payments?

Once we have accepted your claim, we will make a payment to you on our next available payment date. Our payment dates are either the 5th or 20th of the month.

How long does the claims process normally take?

The process length of time is dependent on the type of claim. For most claims, we can make a decision within 48 hours of receiving your completed form and documents. However, there are some occasions where we will need further medical or financial evidence, which may cause slight delays in us reaching a decision.

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0161 428 1212

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You can call us any time between 8am - 7pm Monday to Thursday or 8am - 4pm Friday.