BT Product Initiative

BT Financial Group has claimed a first-to-market initiative in extending its Terminal Illness Benefit provision from 12 to 24 months.

BT's national manager, life insurance products, Scott Moffitt

BT’s national manager, life insurance products, Scott Moffitt…’first-to-market’ initiative

In a release announcing this initiative, the company says it is the first retail insurer to act in response to an expansion of the Superannuation Industry Supervision (SIS) Act terminal medical condition of release, under which the life expectancy provision has been extended from 12 to 24 months.

The enhancement we’ve made… enables those members with BT life insurance to access their money earlier

The new advanced terminal illness payment benefit within the BT Protection Plans product range became effective from 1 October 2015. The company notes this enhanced benefit will be available at no additional cost to existing and new customers who hold BT Protection Plans Term Life cover, whether the product exists as a standalone product, within a platform service or inside superannuation.

BT’s national manager, life insurance products, Scott Moffitt, said that given the recent changes to the SIS legislation, it was important to deliver an advanced terminal illness benefit: “The recent changes to superannuation mean that members are now able to access their superannuation accumulated balance before their life insurance can be paid. The enhancement we’ve made to BT Protection Plans enables those members with BT life insurance to access their money earlier, providing a simpler insurance solution for both customers and advisers.” Mr Moffitt said.

Mr Moffitt noted the advanced terminal illness payment can provide eligible claimants assistance with meeting immediate costs such as:

  • Personal and palliative care
  • Specialist treatments
  • Transport to medical facilities and accommodation
  • Daily living expenses for family members who have ceased working in order to provide full-time care

BT has issued a new Supplementary PDS, effective from 1 October 2015, which also includes updates to Total and Partial Disability Benefits for medical practitioners and changes to some cancer definitions.

  • paulkate72

    Marvellous initiative in my view. Palliative care and other end-of-life circumstances have enormous effects on those delivering the care. Costs are just one of those, but an important one. This is a breakthrough step and one to be commended. Congratulations to BT Life.

    • rob

      a decent initiative – yes. marvelous? certainly not. a typical terminal illness diagnosis sees a client with less than 12 months to live. it is relatively uncommon that a person be diagnosed as terminally ill yet they still have 18 or 24 months to live. it obviously does happen, just not very often.
      We’ve had a few terminal illness claims and not one of them would have been impacted by this ‘product initiative’.

      • paulkate72

        Quite likely to be the case, I agree. Even so, it’s a step in the right direction and is better than going the other way. We can be thankful for small mercies at this point, I think.

      • Michael

        That’s great Rob but I doubt your personal experience is a very useful sample size of those with terminal illness. The government changed the SIS ACT legislation on the 1st of July this year in response to lobbying by people left destitute with terminal illness that had more than 12 months to live. When you consider that someone with 2 years to live also has a higher likelihood of recovery (e.g. the 5% that survive lung cancer beyond 5 years) this is actually a great outcome.

        Or as Richie Benaud would say “Simply marvellous”.

        Point of order on the “first to market” claim though: Industry funds actually moved inline with the SIS act changes on the day they came into force. They might suck at, well everything else but in this case they took the wicket. Howzat!!