British Friendly income protection review

British Friendly (also known as British Friendly Society) are income protection specialists, offering a range of policies to cater to a range of needs.

In this review of British Friendly income protection, we’ll be looking at their policies to help you establish if they are the right provider for you.

British Friendly income protection

Reassured can also help you compare income protection quotes from British Friendly (as well as all other UK providers) to help you find the best available deal.

The service offered by Reassured is FCA-regulated and quotes are provided free of charge.

So, why not get in touch for your personalised and no-obligation quotes?

British Friendly income protection key points

  • Policies are available to those aged between 18 - 59 (your policy must end by age 70)
  • Up to 65% of your usual income could be protected (if you earn up to £60,000, if you’re earning more than £60,000 you’ll be able to protect up to 45% of your earnings)
  • Policy options include the ‘Protect’ policy and the ‘Breathing Space’ policy
  • With a Protect policy the maximum benefit can be £4,750 per month or £57,000 per year
  • With a Breathing Space policy the maximum benefit can be £541 - £1,250 per month or £6,500 - £15,000 per year
  • Own occupation definition of incapacity - meaning you can claim if you’re unable to do your specific job
  • Access to Mutual Benefits at no extra cost when you take out a policy
  • You have the option to have your benefit paid monthly or weekly
  • British Friendly income protection can’t be purchased directly, you’ll need to secure cover through a financial advisor or broker service
  • In 2022, 90% of all new British Friendly income protection claims were paid out[1]

Who are British Friendly Society?

British Friendly Society were founded in 1902 and started life providing sickness benefits to commercial travellers.

Since then, they’ve developed into income protection insurance specialists, with over a century of experience.

It’s important to note that British Friendly are not regulated to provide financial advice - meaning you’re unable to buy their products directly from them.

Instead, you’ll need to secure cover through a financial advisor or broker service (such as Reassured).

Simply get in touch today to compare British Friendly income protection.

British Friendly income protection terms and conditions

The terms and conditions offered by British Friendly can vary depending on which of their policies you take out.

British Friendly offer two income protection policies:

  1. Protect - A traditional income protection policy, available on a short-term or long-term basis
  2. Breathing Space - Requires no financial underwriting during the application process, making it an ideal option for those who earn an irregular income (such as the self-employed or gig economy workers)

Below you’ll find a breakdown of each policy’s terms and conditions:

Protect income protection from British Friendly

Protect

  • Benefit amount (how much will be paid out): Up to a maximum of £4,750 per month or £57,000 per year, depending on your income at the time (you’ll need to provide proof of income at the time of the claim)
  • Policy term (how long your cover will last): Can be a minimum of 5 years and must end between the ages of 50 - 70
  • Payment period (how long you’ll receive payments): This can be long-term (which could pay out until the policy term comes to an end) or short-term (which can last for either 1, 2 or 5 years per claim)
  • Premium type (how you’ll pay for cover): You have the option of level guaranteed (won’t change over time) or age-costed guaranteed (will increase each year as you get older at a guaranteed rate)
  • Deferred period (when you’ll receive payments): Options include day 1 (only available with age-costed premiums with a long-term payment period), 1 week (only available with age costed premiums) or 4, 8, 13, 26 or 52 weeks. This period must pass before you’ll receive any payments
  • Definition of incapacity (what makes you eligible to claim): Comes with own occupation definition. This means you’ll be able to claim if you’re unable to do your specific job
  • Cover basis: You can opt for level cover (remains the same) or increasing cover (will increase in line with Retail Prices Index)
  • Age at entry: 18 - 59
Breathing Space income protection British Friendly

Breathing Space

  • Benefit amount (how much will be paid out): Between £541 - £1,250 per month or £6,500 - £15,000 per year (this amount won’t be linked to your income as no financial underwriting is required)
  • Policy term (how long your cover will last): Can be a minimum of 5 years and must end between the ages of 50 - 70
  • Payment period (how long you’ll receive payments): Comes with a short-term (or limited) payment period. You can choose for your payment period to last either 1, 2 or 5 years per claim. There’s no limit to the amount of claims you can make during the policy term
  • Premium type (how you’ll pay for cover): Age-costed guaranteed premiums (will increase each year as you get older at a guaranteed rate)
  • Deferred period (when you’ll receive payments): Any of the following deferred periods are available regardless of other policy terms - 1 or 4, 8, 13, 26 or 52 weeks. This period must pass before you’ll receive any payments
  • Definition of incapacity (what makes you eligible to claim): Comes with an own occupation definition. This means you’ll be able to claim if you’re unable to do your specific job
  • Cover basis: You can opt for level cover (remains the same) or increasing cover (will increase in line with Retail Prices Index)
  • Age at entry: 18 - 59

To find the policy with the best terms and conditions to meet your needs, it’s essential to compare quotes.

Not only can Reassured help you compare quotes from British Friendly, but they can provide you with quotes from other leading providers.

This allows you to find the best available price on a policy that ticks all your boxes. Simply get in touch.

British Friendly income protection reviews

The products offered by British Friendly Society are rated ‘Excellent’ on Trustpilot, with 4.4 stars out of 5, (as of 16/05/23).

Furthermore, both their Protect and Breathing Space policies are rated 5 stars on Defaqto.

This shows that the products offered by British Friendly are rated highly by both their customers and independent bodies.

What can British Friendly income protection cover?

The payments received from a British Friendly income protection policy can help you to keep up with your current living costs.

You can use your monthly (or weekly) payments to cover whatever you would typically use your pay cheque for.

From essentials like keeping a roof over your head, to allowing you to maintain your favourite hobbies - you can use the payments however you wish.

Commonly income protection is used to help cover:

Re payment mortgage house

Monthly mortgage repayments

Cover rent cost

Monthly rent payments

Bills utilities

Household bills & utilities

Childcare cost baby

Childcare costs

Family living

Daily family spending

Debts

Monthly debt or loan payments

Icons transport

Transportation costs

Daily costs

Leisure or hobby expenses

If you need your income protection payments to help cover your mortgage repayments, British Friendly offer the ‘mortgage payment option’.

With this option you can have your payments made directly to your mortgage lender when you claim.

Reassured can discuss your needs to help you find the most suitable income protection policy. Simply get in touch for your free quotes.

Why not put your monthly financial commitments into our handy income protection calculator below?

How much British Friendly income protection do you need?

Enter your monthly financial commitments to calculate the level of British Friendly income protection cover you require.

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£723 a month is the average monthly mortgage payment in the UK, with the average monthly rental price coming in at £700.

The majority of our monthly income will go towards rental or mortgage payments.

For this reason, it’s essential to have precautions in place to ensure you could keep up to date with your payments if you weren’t receiving your usual income.

Monthly income protection payments can help to cover this large expense and ensure you can stay in your home.

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According to the Money Advice Service, the average household spends £340 a month on household bills.

This includes electricity, gas, TV and broadband.

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Childcare costs are on the rise with it now costing £137.69 per week for part-time nursery for a child under the age of two.

That’s over £550 per month - is this an amount you’d be able to keep up with if you were unable to work?

Becoming ill could also result in the need for additional childcare while you attend doctors’ appointments or medical treatment.

£
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The average household in the UK spends around £97 a week on their food shop, totaling £388 a month.

While this may seem like a small amount in comparison to some of the other expenses mentioned, the food shop is often where we try to scrimp and save when we fall on hard times.

Income protection can take care of the cost of your weekly food shop, as well as many other essential costs.

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At the beginning of 2020, credit card debt in the UK was at £2.1 billion, with almost 27 million UK residents in some kind of debt.

Becoming unable to work could make it hard to keep up with credit card or loan payments (including car finance or other financed goods).

Failure to keep up with payments could result in additional interest being incurred or late fees issues - resulting in a higher total needing to be paid.

£
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The average spent on public transport each month comes to an average of £94.

This includes the cost of public transport, as well as petrol and diesel vehicles.

While this amount may reduce while you’re unable to work as you won’t need to commute there may be additional spending on public transportation if your illness or injury leaves you unable to drive.

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Your total cover estimate

£ 0

Let us find your best quotes.

British Friendly Mutual Benefits

Mutual Benefits is a discretionary programme available to both new and existing members.

It comes with your income protection policy at no extra cost and provides you with support and rewards in the form of:

Clinic in a pocket - Access to healthcare services for both you and your family such as:

  • Digital GP consultations (unlimited sessions)
  • Physiotherapy (6 sessions)
  • Mental health support (6 sessions)
  • Second medical opinions (2 sessions)
  • Health check (1 session)


Cash in your pocket
- You’ll be entered for a chance to win £100 each month.

  • 5 winners will be randomly selected each month
  • The money will be paid directly into your bank
  • No limit on the amount of times you can win
  • You don’t need to register as you’ll automatically be entered
  • You can use the money however you wish

To be eligible for these benefits, your premiums must be up to date.

If you don’t want to have access to these benefits, you can opt out at any time.

As they are discretionary, British Friendly have the right to withdraw these benefits at any time.

How much is British Friendly income protection?

The price you pay for British Friendly income protection will depend on your personal circumstances and the policy type you choose.

With a Protect policy, your premiums will be calculated using the following information:

  • Policy term
  • Benefit amount
  • Deferred period
  • Premium type (level guaranteed or age-costed guaranteed)
  • Age
  • Current health
  • Medical history
  • Lifestyle
  • Smoking status (with level guaranteed premiums only)
  • Occupation (with level guaranteed premiums only)

With a Breathing Space policy, your premiums will be calculated using the following information:

  • Age
  • Current health
  • Medical history
  • Deferred period
  • Policy term
  • Benefit amount


(You only have the option of age-costed premiums with this policy type).

The table below shows the price of British Friendly income protection through Reassured.

Quotes are based on a non-smoker, in good health, with an annual income of £30,000. The policy term is until age 65 with a 13 week deferred period:

AgeBritish Friendly Protect price per month (1 year payment period with level guaranteed premiums)British Friendly Protect price per month (full payment period with level guaranteed premiums)British Friendly Breathing Space price per month (1 year payment period with age-costed premiums)
20£11.18£21.46£15.88
25£11.18£28.55£15.88
30£11.18£29.52£15.88
35£12.34£34.91£17.50
40£15.54£43.07£19.50
45£18.89£52.39£22.00
50£26.09£56.66£30.12


The price that you pay for British Friendly income protection could be more or less than the prices shown depending on the factors mentioned above.

It’s also important to note that the underwriting processes used by each provider can vary. For this reason, it’s essential to compare quotes to find the best deal.

A friendly member of the Reassured team can help you compare income protection quotes from the whole of the market.

This includes other leading providers, some who offer cover from just 20p-a-day.

How do I make a claim with British Friendly?

To claim with British Friendly, you can fill out an online form.

British Friendly ask that you provide the following details when filling out this form:

  • Policy number
  • Details of the illness or injury
  • Date of first absence from work
  • How long you expect to be off work (if known)
  • Preferred time and day to be contacted (morning or afternoon)
  • Relationship to policyholder (if claiming on someone else’s behalf)

You’ll also need to provide contact details such as your first and last name, email address and phone number.

Alternatively, you can email claimsenquiry@britishfriendly.com to make a claim. Your email must include the details mentioned above.

What are the top reasons people claim with British Friendly?

In 2022, British Friendly paid out 90% of all new income protection claims. Their top claim reasons were:

  • Musculoskeletal-related issues - 46.7%
  • COVID-19 - 14.2%
  • Mental health conditions - 7%
  • Other surgeries (not covered in other categories) - 6.4%
  • Chest/lung/nose/throat conditions - 5.8%[1]

Over the last 16 years, British friendly have paid out an average of 95% of all their income protection claims[2].

British Friendly additional policy benefits

  • Waiver of premiums - Once your claim has been in place for 28 days, you won’t need to pay your premiums
  • Guaranteed insurability (GIO) - You can increase your cover amount, without additional medical underwriting, if your circumstances change (for example, you get married, become a parent, move to a larger house or your family grows)
  • Terminal illness cover - If you’re diagnosed with a terminal illness, with less than 12 months to live, the deferred period will be waved and you won’t have to wait to receive payments
  • Occupation promise - If you change jobs after you take out a policy, your premiums and cover amount won’t change
  • Back to work support - If you’re unable to return to your pre-incapacity job and need to return part time or with reduced hours, or need to return to a new job with a reduced income, British Friendly will continue to pay you a reduced amount of your benefit when you return to work
  • Mortgage payment option - If you have a mortgage you can opt to have your income protection payments go directly to your mortgage lender to help cover your repayments
  • Sick pay protection - If you work as a teacher or an NHS doctor, surgeon, nurse, midwife or dentist your payments can match up with your sick pay schedule. You’ll need to choose a 52 week deferred period to benefit from this
  • Inflation linked cover - You have the option to choose an increasing cover amount. This means your benefit amount will increase in line with Retail Prices Index - helping to protect your payments from inflation. Your premiums will also increase in line with your new cover amount
  • Overseas cover - You could still be able to claim outside of the UK if you were a UK resident when you took your policy out. Certain restrictions may apply with some countries
  • Mutual benefits - Can help to provide you with additional support with ‘clinic in a pocket’ and ‘cash in your pocket’.

You’ll also have access to BF Care, a discretionary benefit which gives you access to additional financial support if you experience a life changing event. These include:

  • Death benefit
  • Bereavement benefit
  • Terminal illness benefit
  • Care assistance benefit
  • Recovery support benefit

Is British Friendly income protection right for me?

Hopefully this review has helped to outline the key features of British Friendly income protection.

Ultimately, whether they are the right option for you will depend on whether they offer the tight terms and conditions to meet your needs.

When making your decision it can help to weigh up the pros and cons:

PROsCONs
Own occupation definition of incapacity (so you can claim if you can’t do your own job, some other definitions may require you to work in another role if you’re unable to do your own)Relatively low maximum benefit amount in comparison to some other providers (a maximum of £4,750 per month or £57,000 per year with the Protect policy or £541 - £1,250 per month or £6,500 - £15,000 per year with the Breathing Space policy)
Protect policy offers both short-term and long-term payment periodsCover can’t be bought directly through British Friendly, you need to buy a policy through a financial advisor or broker service
Breathing Space policy doesn’t require financial underwriting, which is ideal for those with an irregular income or who have recently become self-employedIf you’re on a tight budget, there are cheaper income protection options available
Age costed premiums could help those with ‘risker’ occupations secure cover as occupation won’t be taken into consideration when calculating premiums
Good range of additional policy benefits
A 95% pay out rate over the last 16 years (on average)[2]


Alternatively, why not contact Reassured? an expert member of the team can take your personal circumstances into consideration and provide you with the most suitable options to meet your needs.

Compare British Friendly income protection quotes

British Friendly income protection can’t be bought directly through them, so you’ll need to use the services of a financial advisor or a broker - like Reassured.

By using the broker service offered by Reassured you can compare quotes from British Friendly, as well as all other UK providers.

Comparing quotes is the best way to secure the right policy to meet your needs, at the best available price.

All quotes provided by Reassured are personalised, no-obligation and completely fee-free.

You’ll also have access to a dedicated member of team to answer any questions you might have along the way.

Simply get in touch today.

Sources:

[1] https://www.covermagazine.co.uk/news/4087272/british-friendly-income-protection-pay-outs-exceed-gbp-million-2022

[2] https://theintermediary.co.uk/2022/05/british-friendly-paid-94-of-all-new-income-protection-claims-in-q1/

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