Largest claims for death cover

29 July 2020

The life insurance industry paid $12 billion to 101,821 Australians in 2019, with death cover having the most cover in force at 13.4 million with the top cause being cancer at 43%, according to data. 

Data from KPMG on behalf of the Financial Services Council (FSC) found total and permanent disability (TPD) claims followed at 11.1 million covers, with the highest cause of claim being mental health at 25%. 

Income protection/disability income had 5.8 million covers in force with 33% for accidents, and trauma insurance had 1.1 million covers in force with cancer being the highest cause at 58%. 

FSC senior policy manager for life insurance, Nick Kirwan, said: “Life insurance companies pay out almost $33 million to 279 Australians and their families every single day, 365 days a year.  

“Payments are made to people who have lost a partner, a parent or a loved one, or to help people support themselves and their family when they are too ill to work, after a critical illness or who are not expected to be able to work ever again. 

“When we see the collective data, and especially the many and varied causes of claim and just how often they occur, it reveals the scale of the human tragedies that Australians and their families can, and all too often do, go through.” 

LIFE INSURANCE CLAIMS DATA FOR 2019 

 

Life Insurance 

Pays a lump sum on your death or the diagnosis of a terminal illness. 

13.4 million covers in force 

Number of claims paid 

Acceptance rate 

Amount paid ($m) 

19,974 

97% paid 

$3,644 

Top 5 causes of claim 

% of total claims paid 

Amount paid ($m) 

Cancer 

43% 

1,580.7 

Accident 

17% 

630.9 

Circulatory System 

14% 

507.2 

Abnormal Clinical Findings 

10% 

379.6 

Nervous System 

3% 

121.6 

 

Total and Permanent Disability (TPD) Insurance 

Pays you a lump sum if you are not expected to work ever again due to illness or injury. 

11.1 million covers in force 

Number of claims paid 

Acceptance rate 

Amount paid ($m) 

17,266 

90% paid 

2,579 

Top 5 causes of claim 

% of total claims paid 

Amount paid ($m) 

Mental Disorders 

25% 

649.2 

Musculoskeletal System 

22% 

575.4 

Accident 

15% 

374.2 

Nervous System 

12% 

311.5 

Cancer 

9% 

240.3 

Income Protection (IP) / Disability Income (DI) Insurance 

Pays you an income after an initial waiting period if you are not well enough to work due to illness or injury. 

5.8 million covers in force 

Number of claims paid 

Acceptance rate 

Amount paid ($m) 

37,465 

95% paid 

$4,342 

Top 5 causes of claim 

% of total claims paid 

Amount paid ($m) 

Accident 

33% 

1,450.4 

Cancer 

14% 

595.1 

Mental Disorders 

14% 

594.4 

Musculoskeletal System 

13% 

554.1 

Circulatory System 

9% 

370.7 

 

Trauma insurance / Critical Illness Insurance 

Pays you a lump sum on diagnosis of a specified critical illness. 

1.1 million covers in force 

Number of claims paid 

Acceptance rate 

Amount paid ($m) 

5,159 

86% paid 

$1,056 

Top 5 causes of claim 

% of total claims paid 

Amount paid ($m) 

Cancer 

58% 

609.2 

Circulatory System 

24% 

249.2 

Nervous System  

5% 

58.1 

Accident 

3% 

30.3 

Abnormal Clinical Findings 

2% 

17.2 

. 

 

Whole Market 

Life, TPD, IP, Trauma, Funeral, Accident, and CC Insurance 

34.9 million covers in force 

Period of Report 

Number of claims paid 

Amount paid ($m) 




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