Press releases

Legal & General updates Critical Illness Cover to reflect changing customer lifestyles and medical advancements

Legal & General has made multiple updates to its Critical Illness and Critical Illness Extra (CI Extra) products, including extending cover for cancer and increasing the reach of its children’s cover.

29 Apr 2024

Full press release

Legal & General has updated its Critical Illness Cover (CIC) product offering to reflect changing lifestyles and family structures in the UK. 

Expanded definitions and new coverage for skin cancer and other severe illnesses have been added to Legal & General’s CI Extra products, as medical advances including early detection mean an increase in treatment for less advanced illnesses,

Greater coverage for children

For Children's CI Extra, the maximum age a child can be covered to is increasing from their 22nd to their 23rd birthday, with the policy remaining in place whether or not the child is in full time education. 

This update reflects the fact that many young adults are completing their studies later or taking gap years, while others are choosing to live at home with their parents for longer. Legal & General’s Bank of Family research, for instance, found that 31% of parents and grandparents have welcomed adult family members to live with them to make it easier to save for a deposit1.

Meanwhile, both Children’s CIC and CI Extra now include coverage for children under the legal guardianship of a policy holder, expanding upon coverage for adopted and stepchildren. This reflects changing family structures in the UK.

Additionally, payments for conditions covered under Children’s CI Extra and Child’s Terminal Illness will increase from 50%/£35k to a maximum of 50%/£40k of the original sum assured.​ 

Broader cancer and severe illness definitions

For CI Extra, Legal & General has also expanded its policies to better reflect the modern medical landscape. More people are receiving treatment for severe illnesses at an earlier stage, and therefore expanding definitions and adding coverage for conditions like skin cancer allows for crucial financial support for these customers.  The updates include:

  • Broadening cancer definitions to include some progressive cutaneous lymphoma and sarcomas, while now also including low-grade thyroid cancer
  • Cover for skin cancer of a specified severity has also been added, reflecting earlier detection and treatment rates for the condition through medical advances.
  • In addition, the definitions for Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis are now covered under the broader definition of severe bowel disease, which also covers diverticulitis and intestinal ischaemia
  • Severe mental health illnesses have now been included
  • The insertion of a pacemaker and infective endocarditis has also now been included under additional payment terms

In addition to the above, payments for additional cover conditions under CI Extra policies will increase from 50%/£30k to a maximum of 50%/£35k of the original sum assured.

Julie Godley, Director of Intermediary, Legal & General Retail: "We are happy to announce that our Critical Illness products now cover more areas and give our customers more options at a time when lifestyles in the UK are changing. Working with our intermediary partners and responding to the changing needs of our customers remains a key priority for us.

“Adding broader definitions for cancer, other serious illnesses and extending the number of customers covered by our Children's CI Extra policies, demonstrates our commitment to improving our protection cover and ensuring our products match the changing needs of our customers.

“We encourage all our intermediary partners to familiarise themselves with these details to help potential customers make the most informed decisions when taking out a policy. We’re also giving adviser’s the opportunity to hear directly from our experts about the changes in a series of webinars, which they can register for via our website."


1 Legal & General Bank of Family Research released August 2023.

Further information

Fallback Thumbnail Video 16:9 Landscape

Koren Byrne-Hunte

PR Manager

Legal & General Retail

Notes to editors

Established in 1836, Legal & General is one of the UK’s leading financial services groups and a major global investor, with £1.2 trillion in total assets under management (as at FY23) of which c40% (circa £0.5 trillion) is international.

We have a highly synergistic business model, which continues to drive strong returns. We are a leading international player in Institutional Retirement, in Retail Savings and Protection, and in both public and private markets through our Asset Management division. Across the Group, we are committed to responsible investing and dedicated to serving the long-term savings and investment needs of customers and society.

As at 7 June 2024, we estimate the Group’s Solvency II coverage ratio to be 224%.

As at 11 June 2024, Legal & General has a market capitalisation of £14.6 billion.

Legal & General Retail helps create brighter financial futures for all our customers. The division covers the savings, protection and retirement needs of our c.14 million retail policyholders and workplace members.  

In 2023, we had total individual annuity sales of £1,431 million, and issued £299 million of Lifetime Mortgages and Retirement Interest Only Mortgages. Our Workplace pension platform served 5.2 million members, while our Protection businesses gave peace of mind to several million direct, group and US customers, taking in £1,991 million of UK and $1,584 million of US gross written premiums.