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UK life insurers pay 90 million pounds in COVID-19 claims - trade body

Insurers received 7,000 life insurance claims from families of people who died from COVID-19 and 83% have been paid so far, the ABI said in a statement. Every life insurance claim has been accepted, it said.

Members of the military and private contractors help to prepare the ExCel centre in London on 30 March 2020, which has been transformed into a field hospital to be known as the NHS Nightingale Hospital, to help with the novel coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic. Picture: AFP

LONDON - British life insurers paid 90 million pounds in claims related to deaths from the COVID-19 pandemic in the three months to end-May, the Association of British Insurers (ABI) said on Thursday.

Insurers received 7,000 life insurance claims from families of people who died from COVID-19 and 83% have been paid so far, the ABI said in a statement. Every life insurance claim has been accepted, it said.

The average payout is expected to be 63,000 pounds for an individual policy and 137,000 for a group policy.

Life insurers have been hit by the pandemic but their losses are seen as limited.

Although they are paying life insurance claims, worsening life expectancy will mean pensions, often the bulk of their business, are paid for a shorter period, industry sources say.

The ABI has said it expected its members to pay 1.2 billion pounds in pandemic-related claims this year, in sectors such as business interruption and event cancellation.

Industry sources say that figure could reach billions if the Financial Conduct Authority wins a test case against insurers over business interruption policy wordings. A decision is expected in mid-September.

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