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1 March 2011

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Are there insurance policies that cover practices paying their staff through occupational sickness schemes? If so, on what basis?

The short answer is ‘yes’, but there are a few choices that you will need to make in order to make sure that the insurance cover fits your requirements:

You will need to decide whether you want to cover your members of staff on an ‘occupation cover only’ basis or on a ’24-hour cover’ basis (both of these I think are self-explanatory). In addition, do you want to provide cover while members of staff are on holiday abroad? If so, then the ’24-hour cover’ on a worldwide basis fits the bill. The cost difference is minimal.

Are you looking to tie the cover in with the contract of employment for each member of staff? If so, the benefit you insure for and length of payment vary with each member of staff.

So far you have decided what type of cover you require, the benefit and the period over which the payment is needed.

Finally, you have to look into your crystal ball and make a judgement on when you want the insurance company to start paying the benefit. The period before the payment is made is known as the ‘deferred period’ and the longer the deferred period, the cheaper the premium.