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REBA Wellbeing Congress 2020: Congress Blog - Group risk benefits: the unsung heroes of the benefits package

By Katharine Moxham 9 September 2020.

One of the greatest challenges the group risk industry faces from both employers and their people is the “it won’t happen to me” mindset. Group risk benefits aren’t always seen by employers as a priority and can often take a back seat to benefits that provide instant gratification.

With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, more businesses and their staff alike have realised that death, severe illness and lasting disability are a real risk for everyone, and many can see that “it could actually happen to me”. We’re all acutely aware that we might die, be extremely ill or be left with a lasting health condition as a result of contracting COVID-19. And we’ve still only scratched the surface in terms of understanding the ways in which this disease can affect the body.

As we try to return to some normality, employers are doing everything that they can to ensure the safety of their people. However, many employees are returning to their normal place of work after furlough or periods working from home with some apprehension as they potentially increase their exposure to the virus by doing so.

The invaluable support of group risk insurances

For those employers who already had group risk benefits in place for their workers, this choice may well have paid off.

As a result of COVID-19, the dependants of employees with group life provisions in place have been paid benefits valued at a total of nearly £57 million between 1 January and 30 June 2020, according to GRiD’s mid-year COVID-19 claims survey 2020. This represents 475 lump sum death benefit claims, plus the capitalised value of seven dependants’ pension claims where COVID-19 has been recorded as the primary or secondary cause of death on the death certificate or reported on the claim form.

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