Income protection gives you a regular monthly income if you can’t work because you have had an accident or injury, or you become ill. It will usually cover you until you’re fit to return to work, or the policy comes to an end as a result of normal retirement or death.
Your monthly premium is based on your individual circumstances, for example, your age, health, occupation and lifestyle. Any valid claim paid is usually based on a percentage of your earnings until you can go back to work - and it's tax free.
Things to check:
There are different definitions of ‘incapacity’ (ie: unable to work) and these will affect if/when your policy pays out. Make sure it’s right for you – if you’re not sure, speak to an insurance provider or your financial advisor. It doesn't cover redundancy, so you may wish to consider additional or other types of protection.
The deferral period
Most policies specify a 'deferral period' before any benefits can be paid out. You may have to wait some time before your insurer will pay any benefits. You may choose to set your payments to start after any sick pay or after any other insurance policy ends if you have one. Usually, the longer the deferral period, the lower your premiums.
Income protection can be complicated so make sure you’re covered adequately before you need to use it. You can speak to an insurance provider or a financial advisor about taking out an income protection policy.