Legal & General paid out £636 million in Individual Protection Claims in 2017

Legal & General has today released data showing how much it paid out on individual protection claims in 2017. The FTSE 100 insurer has paid out a total of £636m across its Life, Critical Illness, Terminal Illness and Income Protection insurance products in 2017, the equivalent of £1.74m every day.

  • Figures show a £30m increase on 2016, with an average of £1.74m paid to customers every day in 2017
  • Legal & General paid £209m in Critical Illness claims in 2017, up £28m on 2016
  • £112m was paid in Terminal Illness claims in 2017, up £5m on 2016
  • The insurer also paid £313m in Life Insurance claims, with 98% of all claims paid
  • Over the past five years, Legal & General has paid a total of £2.7 billion in Individual Protection Claims

The figures represent a £30m increase on 2016 and raises the total amount Legal & General has paid in individual protection claims over the last five years to £2.7bn. More than 13,000 Legal & General UK customers and their families have benefited from individual cover and the figures highlight both the prevalence of critical events, such as the death or severe illness of a family member and the importance of protection in providing financial security in everyday life.

Life Claims

Legal & General paid out £313m in Life claims in 2017 across 9004 claims, the equivalent of 25 claims a day. The figures mean the insurer paid 98% of all life insurance claims last year. The top three conditions were cancer (39%), cardiovascular (17%) and respiratory illnesses (16%). The largest claim paid was £1.5m and the average age of claimants was 66 years old.

Critical Illness Claims

Legal & General paid 92% of Critical Illness claims in 2017, with the insurer paying a total of £209m across 3041 claims, the equivalent of eight claims a day. The most common conditions behind the claims were cancer (64%)*, heart attacks (10%) and strokes (6%). The largest claim was £804,342, whilst the average claimant age was just 47.

Children’s Critical Illness Claims

Legal & General paid out 93% of Children’s Critical Illness claims, with the largest claim paid being £25,000. A cancer diagnosis was the reason behind two-thirds (66%) of claims, whilst strokes (7%) and benign brain tumours (6%) were the next biggest causes. Sadly, the average age of claimants was just 7 years old and 45% of claims were from policyholders with children aged 0-5 years old.

Terminal Illness claims

Legal & General paid out £112m across 1077 Terminal Illness (TIC) claims in 2017, representing 95% of all TIC claims. Nearly all claims were caused by a cancer diagnosis (99%). The average age of claimants was just 55 and the largest claim was worth £1.5m.

Income Protection

Legal & General paid out £1.2m across 441 Income Protection claims in 2017.** In total, this represented 95% of all claims. The average age of a claimant was 42 and the average pay out was £732.

For claims admitted in 2017 only, musculoskeletal conditions (36%) were the most common reason for a claim, followed by mental health (22%) and cancer (14 %).

Steve Griffiths, Managing Director, UK Protection at Legal & General said: “Managing a critical or terminal illness, or overcoming the death of a loved one, is an extremely stressful and challenging time for anyone involved. At Legal & General, we’re committed to supporting policyholders and their families when they are at their most vulnerable, helping to provide financial security and peace of mind in their time of need, and we are proud to have supported our customers by paying out £636 million in individual protection claims last year.

“Over the past five years, we have paid out £2.7 billion in individual protection claims, and these figures clearly show the crucial role that protection continues to play in supporting thousands of people day to day.

“However, the UK continues to suffer from a protection gap that leaves many families at financial risk should they or their loved ones be diagnosed with a critical illness, be unable to work or pass away unexpectedly. As an industry, we must continue to highlight the risks of a critical event and we hope that advisers can use these figures to showcase the benefits of protection to consumers across the UK.”

* Not all types of cancer are covered under critical illness plans

** Includes new claims admitted in 2017 and those already being paid before 1 January 2017 that continued to be paid in 2017

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The information contained in this press release is intended solely for journalists and should not be relied upon by private investors or any other persons to make financial decisions.


The Legal & General Group, established in 1836, is one of the UK’s leading financial services companies.  As at 31 December 2017, we had over 9.5 million customers in the UK for our life assurance, pensions, investments and general insurance plans.

Legal & General Assurance Society Limited. Authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. Registered office: One Coleman Street, London EC2R 5AA.