Aviva pays out over €121 million in life protection claims in 2023

Sharp increase in income protection claimants suffering psychological issues

Aviva Life & Pensions Ireland DAC (Aviva), one of Ireland’s leading insurers, today reported that the company paid out €121.1 million in claims to customers with protection policies in 2023, the highest value paid to date (2022: €118.6 million).  The company paid €121.1 million to over 2,600 – (2022: 2,628) with life, specified illness, and income protection policies last year.  Income protection claims increased by €3 million and specified illness claims by €3.6 million, while life insurance claims reduced by €4.1 million last year. A further €250,000 was spent on rehabilitation for customers with claims, an increase of €50,000 over the 2022 statistics.

The Aviva claims statistics for 2023 include:

Income protection claims:

Aviva paid out €51 million (2022: €48 million) to 2,000 new and existing customers last year.  Of those claims submitted in 2023, 56% were from women, while men represented 44% of claimants.  Psychological issues remain the number one medical reason for claims on income protection policies at 33%.  However, this figure saw an increase in claims of 7% last year (2022: 26%).  Income protection claims as a result of psychological issues was higher amongst females at 36% (2022: 30%) than males at 29% (2022: 20%), with orthopaedic issues coming in in second place at 20%- higher amongst male claimants at 24% than females at 16%. The percentage of claims paid out because of cancer (20%), neurological (6%), and cardiac (5%) issues are broadly similar to the previous year.  The number of claims driven by people suffering from either long-Covid or complications having had Covid, some of whom had underlying medical conditions reduced to 3% from 5% in 2022. The average age of claimants is 46 (down 2) for females, with no change to the average for males at age 49 and the youngest claimants were aged 25 (males) and 23 for females (26 in 2022).

The average length of time that customers are out of work is now seven and a half years. The longest active claim in payment is 32 years, with the customer aged 29 when the claim commenced. The company also paid €250,000 in early intervention and rehabilitation support to its income protection customers through the year, up from €200,000 in the prior year.

Specified illness claims

Some 163 customers who were diagnosed with a specified illness were paid €17.8 million (2022: €14.2 million) in 2023.  Whilst breast cancer and other cancers has been the primary reason for specified illness claims from females for some time, the incidents of breast cancer reduced by 3% last year following a stark 21% increase in 2022, bringing the total claims for breast cancer to 52%.  This was followed by other cancers at 28% of claims and cardiac and stroke at 10% for female claimants, the latter up from 6% in 2022.  The primary cause of claims for males remains cancer at 56%, cardiac at 33% (+ 3%), with strokes at 6% (+ 2%).

The youngest female claimant was 32 years of age (35 in 2022) and the youngest male aged 38 (34 in 2022).  The earliest female customer claim was paid out after just six months of the policy being taken out, and 16 months for a male claimant.  The largest claim paid last year was €2.9 million, up from €950,000 in 2022.

Death benefit claims

Aviva paid out €52.3 million (2022: €56.4 million) on 454 (2022: 471) death benefit claims, with the largest single claim pay-out of €1.9 million. €700,000 more than the prior year.  There were no changes recorded in the top three reasons for the claims which continue to be cancer, cardiac and respiratory issues.

The value of holding life, specified illness and income protection cover is only fully realised when a claim is made. Paying claims is at the heart of what we do, and we are always pleased to support our customers in what is generally a very stressful time when dealing with the death of a loved one or coming to terms with a specified illness or having to stop working for a period due to illness or injury. Having a regular income or receiving a lump sum can help alleviate financial concerns when someone is dealing with an injury, illness, or the death of a loved one.

Siocha Costello, Aviva

The reality is that, in the unfortunate event that we experience illness or injury during our lifetime, we must continue to pay our bills that likely include our mortgage or rent, living costs and other expenses. We believe that having some financial protection is better than none and recommend that those in employment speak with a financial broker who can help them plan the best protection option suitable to their specific circumstances and budget. Customers taking out an income protection policy can protect up to 75% of their income, or choose a lesser amount if affordability is an issue. Our average annual benefit paid last year to individual income protection customers provided approximately €976.00 per week (males) and €940.00 per week to females. These sums represent a substantial uplift on the weekly State Disability benefit of €232.00 which is what individuals with no income protection cover can expect to receive if they are unable to work because of injury or illness for an extended period

Siocha Costello, Aviva

Aviva provides customers taking out protection policies with a range of free additional benefits for both themselves, and their family, including children and students up to 23 years old.  The free benefits, which can be accessed through a mobile phone app include: a digital GP service, with the ability to send prescriptions to the nearest chemist, best doctors second medical opinion, family care mental health support provided by qualified psychologists, and bereavement counselling support.

Media Centre

Visit our Media Centre page to find our latest new releases and media contacts details.

Aviva Group Services Ireland Limited, a private company limited by shares. Registered in Ireland No.322579. Registered Office: Cherrywood Business Park, Dublin, Ireland, D18 W2P5.