- Tip 1 - Ensure you are covered
Most of our members undertake what they regard as recreational scuba diving. Your insurance company may regard such activities as extreme sports – and your diving may not be covered under a standard insurance policy. Hopefully you will never need insurance, but making a claim which could be delayed or refused at what would be a difficult time for the claimants is something which can easily be avoided.
Take expert advice from Scuba Financial Services.
- Tip 2 - Take advantage of special rates for BSAC members
Confirm you are a BSAC member when contacting Scuba Financial Services to obtain the special rates we have negotiated on your behalf.
- Tip 3 - Joint policy or two single policies?
The cost of two single life policies does not cost much more than a joint policy.
eg. A couple aged 35, both non-smokers, require £200,000 if one of them dies during the next 20 years whilst their young family are financially dependent on them. Both are BSAC Dive Leaders & Club Instructors, qualified on Trimix to 60m, and enjoy wreck diving within visible and clear access to an external entry or exit point.
A joint policy that pays out £200,000 if one of them dies, costs £21.70 per month.
But what if they were involved in a fatal RTA together? Would £200,000 still be enough for their children’s guardians to bring them up without struggling financially?
Two single life policies for £200,000 cover each would cost just £3.40pm extra for this couple to potentially provide £400,000 in this scenario.
If you already have a joint policy, consider converting this to two single policies.
- Tip 4 - Decreasing or Level Insurance?
If your life insurance is to protect your mortgage then you should consider what type of mortgage you have. Is it a capital repayment mortgage or interest only?
If you have a capital repayment mortgage where the capital is repaid monthly, then the mortgage liability will reduce during the term. A decreasing policy is designed to just clear any outstanding balance owed, as the cover will reduce in line with your liability. A level term policy is normally used to protect an interest only mortgage.
Check that you have the right policy. A decreasing term assurance is cheaper than a level term assurance.
- Tip 5 - Review your existing cover
Do you still dive to the same depths and locations you did when you took out the policy? Did you shop around when you took your cover out? If your diving activities have changed since you took out the policy then any loading an insurance company may have imposed may be removed if the perceived risk is not as great.
Or perhaps you felt obliged to go with the company your mortgage adviser recommended. Different companies have different stances on sporting risks.
You may save money on the cost of your cover even if your diving is similar.
- Tip 6 - Tax-efficiency for directors of their own limited company
It is now possible for a limited company to take out a life insurance policy on its employees for the benefit to be placed in trust for a nominated beneficiary other than the company. Thus a director may arrange their own life insurance, paid through the company as a business expense, with any claim paid tax free to the director’s beneficiaries.
It is not treated as a benefit in kind, and as this is not paid out of an individual’s already taxed income it can save you money via your business.
- Tip 7 - Terminal illness or Critical illness?
Terminal illness cover is normally included free of charge within a typical life insurance policy as this just pays the life insurance out early if you are diagnosed with a terminal illness and have a life expectancy of less than 12 months.
Critical Illness pays out the benefit upon the diagnosis of a critical illness such as a heart attack or cancer, or becoming permanently disabled.
Do not confuse these two. You may think that you have critical illness cover when you haven’t.
Critical illness can be added to a life policy and need not be for the same sum assured, so at least you could have some cover if your budget is tight!
- Tip 8 - See a specialist
Different insurance companies have varying views on the risks presented to them.
A local Financial Adviser or Mortgage Consultant is unlikely to understand your ‘extreme’ diving activities, let alone know which insurer can offer you the best cover at the best price.
Your GP would refer you to a Consultant if they suspected you had a serious medical condition, so you could be recommended the best treatment currently available, and quickly.
Likewise, a specialist company that deals with ‘extreme’ sports on a daily basis should be knowledgeable enough to know which questions to ask you at your initial enquiry stage, and immediately know which insurance companies will impose a loading and which won’t.
Ensure you get the best available cover, at the best price, without unnecessary delay.
For more information and to obtain a quote call 0345 565 0936 or visit Scuba Financial Services online