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Friends life insurance review 2022

Life insurance gives peace of mind and financial support to loved ones who might depend on you and your income. If this is what you’re looking for, let’s look at some insurance providers and their product offerings to see if they are the right fit for you.

Who Are Friends Life Insurance?

Friends Life was bought in 2015 by Aviva Insurance, having been set up in 2008 in order to provide a new offering to the British life insurance industry. Whilst Friends Life has ceased trading under its own name, its existing Life policies are still managed by Aviva. Although Friends Life has ceased trading, its terms will continue as per the policy document.

Summary of Friends Life Insurance Products

Friends Life Insurance offered several types of life insurance with an add-on option for customers to choose.

Level Term Cover

The payout received is fixed in time, and will not reduce over the duration of the policy. So, if you chose a £20,000 lump-sum at the beginning of a policy that protected you over 25 years, you will still receive that £20,000 at the end of those 25 years.

Decreasing Term Cover

Your potential payout reduces over time. This will give you a cheaper premium option, and is useful when your primary financial concern is the ability to pay off a long-term loan, that also reduces in time. If you select £20,000 of protection for a 25 year policy, this will reduce to £0 by the end of the policy term in 25 years. Friends Life also offered a Mortgage Protection Policy that decreases in line with mortgage repayments with the appropriate interest rate.

Both Level and Decreasing Term covers are fixed premiums set for the entirety of the policy period from beginning to end.

Renewable Term Cover

Premiums are reviewed on an annual basis, and can increase or decrease over time. This allows a policyholder who is improving their health and lifestyle on an upwards trajectory an annual review which could result in a cheaper product for them.

Critical Illness Cover

Friends Life allows policyholders to add Critical Illness Cover onto their Life Insurance policies, or indeed purchase this as a standalone policy. Life Insurance pays out upon death of a policyholder or a terminal illness, while Critical Illness pays out upon diagnosis of serious illness. It is designed to ease your financial burden in this event especially if you are left unable to work and continue to earn an income. This will enable you and any dependents you have to pay off debts or meet other financial obligations.

Friends Life Life Insurance Product Offerings

Name Age Range at Application Cover Range Terms Pays Out Joint Cover
Term Cover 18-74 No specified Minimum. £10m Maximum.

Critical Illness £3m

5 to 40 years (but policy must end before you turn 84) If you die or get a terminal illness during the cover period. Either Level or Decreasing Terms Yes, but the policy will only be paid out once
Mortgage Protection Term Cover 18-74 No specified Minimum. £10m Maximum.

Critical Illness £3m

5 to 40 years (but policy must end before you turn 84) If you die or get a terminal illness during the cover period Yes, but the policy will only be paid out once
Renewable Term Cover 18-65 No specified Minimum. £10m Maximum.

Critical Illness £3m

5 to 10 years (but policy must end before you turn 70) If you die or get a terminal illness during the cover period Yes, but the policy will only be paid out once

Life Insurance Features

  • Pays out a lump sum on death or diagnosis of terminal illness before the last twelve months of the policy. This terminal illness must be at an advanced stage and which would result in the policyholder’s death in twelve months.
  • Can choose between single or joint policyholders
  • Several policy types available:

    • Level Term, Decreasing Term, and Renewable Term Cover with a critical illness cover option
  • Accidental Death Benefit: between the time of application and acceptance, you will be covered in case of accidental death (as defined by policy wording)

    Additional Benefits

    • Fracture Cover: should you be involved in an occurrence that results in a fracture to your person, you will receive a benefit in relation to those medical expenses
    • Optional Total Permanent Disability: add on this cover at your preference, with an incident resulting in Total Permanent Disability being a claimable benefit.

    Minimum and Maximum Ages/Policy Term

    • Minimum age 18, maximum age 74
    • Maximum Term: 5-40 years or until your age is 84 (whichever comes sooner)

    Why Might Direct Line Not Payout?

    • Failure to provide accurate policyholder details given at time of application
    • Self inflicted injury or suicide within 12 months of the policy start date
    • If you have elected to add on Critical Illness Cover, a diagnosis for valid payout must be for one of the three illnesses listed on the policy document
    • Failure to maintain policy premium payments

    N.B. Policyholders must reside in England, Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland (not including the Isle of Man or the Channel Islands)


    • Flexible coverage options available, with different Term Covers (Level, Decreasing or Renewable) to suit your needs. Not many insurance providers allow for a premium to be reviewed annually, but this will benefit those whose lifestyle and health will see improvement over time, as cheaper premiums should follow.
    • No maximum coverage amounts specified, but payout amounts of £10,000,000 were available, much greater than other Life Insurance Products
    • Also able to choose between single or joint coverage for a cost-effective way of protecting both yourself and your partner.
    • Have the choice of keeping life insurance cost fixed: if you don't change your policy, the monthly cost stays the same, keeping you safe in the knowledge there’ll be no surprises to your bank account.


    • Term limits. Maximum terms up to 40 years or until you reach 84 years old, whichever is sooner. Some insurers offer Whole Life coverage.