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Best Crit­i­cal Ill­ness Insur­ance: Find the Per­fect Cov­er­age for Your Health 

Find the best critical illness insurance coverage to meet your needs.

Matt Balascak Headshot

By Matt Balascak, Content Writer and Podcast Host


Assurity Critical Illness Insurance

Critical illness insurance is simple, affordable coverage that pays you money directly if you’re diagnosed with a serious illness or condition like heart attack, cancer or stroke. It helps you stay on top of your finances when faced with sudden large expenses, making this coverage vitally important for anyone who might be exposed to high medical costs.

In this article, we’ll examine how you can find the best critical illness insurance, including why you should consider coverage and factors to consider when picking a policy. You’ll learn:

  • The Importance of Critical Illness
  • Understanding Critical Illness Insurance
  • What is Covered by Critical Illness Insurance?
  • Why Having Critical Illness Insurance is Vital
  • Factors to Consider When Choosing Critical Illness Insurance
  • Best Critical Illness Insurance Companies of 2023
  • FAQs
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The Important of Critical Illness Insurance

With the rising popularity of high deductible health plans (HDHPs), it’s more likely than ever that your health coverage comes with significant out-of-pocket costs that you must cover before insurance kicks in. While it’s a great way to keep your regular health insurance premiums down, it can expose you to massive costs if you face a serious health emergency. Not only could you be required to pay thousands of dollars for medical costs, there are hidden expenses that your health insurance won’t cover at all: travel, time off work for recovery, childcare and more. That’s where critical illness insurance comes in.

By providing a lump sum of cash with no restrictions on how or where you can spend it, critical illness insurance gives you the freedom to pay for whatever you need and keep your finances on track. You can use the payment (or benefit) to cover medical costs, stay on top of your other bills, or pay for any unexpected expenses that arise during your treatment. Purchasing critical illness insurance when you’re healthy helps you protect your financial goals during unforeseen health challenges.

Understanding Critical Illness Insurance

Critical illness insurance is one of the only insurance products that wasn’t invented by an insurance company – instead, a doctor created it when he saw his patients struggling with medical costs after experiencing sudden health events. It’s designed to cover the gap between what health insurance covers and what needs to be paid by providing money that can be used for anything you need.

Typically, critical illness insurance covers only major health events – a common cold, stomachache or broken arm won’t qualify for a payment. Unlike disability insurance, critical illness insurance gives you your money up front in one payment. And unlike life insurance, you don’t need to die to receive the benefit.

What is Covered by Critical Illness Insurance?

The exact illnesses and conditions covered by a critical illness policy will depend on where you get your coverage and what kind of coverage you choose. Some plans are very broad, covering everything from a ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease) diagnosis to a coma or paralysis. Most policies will cover common conditions like heart attacks, strokes and cancer; others cover more uncommon conditions like Multiple Sclerosis (MS) or severe burns. Additionally, you may be able to expand your coverage to other conditions for an additional cost.

It’s important to examine the policy you choose to see which diseases and conditions are covered, and to know that policies that cover more conditions are often more expensive or may require medical exams or other information before you qualify. Assurity Critical Illness insurance is streamlined to keep coverage affordable and cover some of the most common serious illnesses: cancer, stroke, heart attack and Advanced Alzheimer’s Disease.

Why Having Critical Illness Insurance is Vital

Imagine facing a sudden serious illness: would you be able to pay thousands of dollars for diagnostic tests and treatments? If you’d struggle, you’re not alone – it’s why so many people turn to unreliable ways of paying like crowdfunding and charity, and why many go into debt. With critical illness insurance, you don’t have to worry about how you would pay. The money would be in your hands shortly after diagnosis and you could pay for whatever you needed, helping you to reduce stress in a difficult time and focusing on getting well again.

Factors to Consider When Choosing Critical Illness Insurance

Like any purchase, there are factors you should consider before buying a critical illness policy. You should know what’s covered and how much your policy will pay you (the benefits), as well as what isn’t covered and whether there are any limitations to coverage. We’ll examine each of these factors in detail below.

Policy Coverage and Benefits

When evaluating a critical illness insurance policy, begin by looking at what it covers. Like we discussed above, most plans will cover common serious illnesses like heart attacks, cancer, organ transplants, renal failure and more. Other more comprehensive plans might cover specific surgeries, ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease), Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and loss of sight or hearing. It’s important to look closely at what’s covered – some policies only pay a portion of your benefit for certain conditions.

Policies are typically more expensive as they cover more conditions. A streamlined plan like Assurity Critical Illness is more affordable and easier to apply for, but won’t cover as many conditions. Consider what’s most important to you to find a plan that meets your needs.

Critical illness benefits can range from $5,000 all the way to $500,000 – this is the amount you’ll receive if you’re diagnosed with a serious illness or condition. A larger benefit will come with a higher monthly cost (or premium), so choose an amount that makes sense with your circumstances. We recommend $25,000 as a good starting point for most people.

Exclusions and Limitations

Most policies will have some limitations and exclusions. For example, if you already have a condition like cancer before you buy a critical illness policy you aren’t eligible for benefits for that diagnosis. Additionally, there might be factors that prevent you from receiving payment, like if you developed a condition as a result of high-risk activities or illegal drug use. Be sure to examine the limitations and exclusions of any policy before purchasing it to see the full list of disqualifying factors.

Waiting Periods

Some policies will have a waiting period, or the amount of time you need to have a policy before it will pay out. This isn’t a concern for most healthy individuals, but you might not receive your benefits if you’re diagnosed in this timeframe. For instance, Assurity Critical Illness won’t pay benefits for a cancer diagnosis within 30 days of purchasing the policy. Other plans might have waiting periods as long as six months or a year – this is another important factor to consider when choosing coverage, and a good reason to get coverage while you’re healthy.

Premium Costs

Premium costs are probably the most important factor for most people – this is the monthly price of your coverage. There are several factors that can add to your monthly costs: What’s covered, your benefit amount, and any expanded coverage (or riders) you may have purchased.

Generally, policies that cover more conditions will have a higher premium cost. Likewise, a larger benefit amount will also add to the price. If you choose to expand coverage to include more diseases, that will also add to the cost of your coverage. Think about which diseases and conditions you might be worried about and how much you’d like to pay each month to try and find a balance between coverage and affordability and find the best coverage for your needs.

Best Critical Illness Insurance Companies of 2023

Assurity Critical Illness Insurance: Best for No Waiting Period

Assurity Critical Illness Insurance is a great choice for most people – it’s notable for having no waiting period for most conditions as well as no medical exams to qualify. In addition, it’s streamlined to cover four of the most common critical illnesses: heart attack, stroke, cancer and Advanced Alzheimer’s Disease. By keeping coverage simple, it’s easier for you to get coverage at a rate that fits into your budget. You can get your personalized price today to see how much it would cost.

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What is critical illness insurance?

Critical illness insurance is an insurance plan designed to help offset the costs of serious medical events and illnesses like cancer. It pays a lump sum payment upon diagnosis to help people stay on top of their finances while undergoing treatment.

What does critical illness insurance cover?

The exact illnesses covered by critical illness insurance depend on the policy you buy, but a critical illness plan will generally cover major medical events like cancer and heart attacks. It won’t cover minor injuries or illnesses, nor is it a replacement for traditional health insurance.

Is there a waiting period before the policy becomes effective?

Whether or not there’s a waiting period depends on your coverage. For Assurity Critical Illness Insurance, there’s no waiting period for most illnesses – there is, however, a 30-day waiting period after purchasing your policy where benefits won’t be paid for cancer diagnoses.

Are there any exclusions or limitations on coverage?

Yes – almost every policy will have some limitations and exclusions for coverage. Generally, any event caused by high-risk or illegal activity won’t be covered by the policy. You should look at the specific limitations for your policy before making a purchase.

How are premium costs determined?

Premium costs depend on what’s covered, how much coverage you purchase, and whether or not you’ve selected any optional riders to expand coverage. The premium cost generally increases with a higher benefit amount and more covered conditions. Premium costs will also be higher for older individuals.

Are there additional coverage options available?

Some critical illness plans will offer additional coverage for more uncommon diseases and conditions. To keep things simple and affordable, Assurity Critical Illness only offers one base plan with no additional options.

How does the payout and benefit structure work?

Some policies will only pay a portion of the benefit amount for certain conditions – for instance, you might only get 50% or 25% of your benefit for some diagnoses. Assurity Critical Illness pays you the full benefit amount for any of the main covered conditions: Invasive cancer, heart attack, stroke and Advanced Alzheimer’s Disease. Less serious forms of cancers, such as non-invasive cancer and skin cancer are paid at a lower benefit amount.

Can individuals with pre-existing conditions get coverage?

You may be able to get coverage with certain pre-existing conditions, but benefits won’t be paid for a condition you had when you applied for coverage.

Is there an age limit for purchasing critical illness insurance?

Yes, most policies won’t offer coverage past a certain age – the age limit depends on your specific coverage. Additionally, costs for coverage go up as you age, so coverage for a 60-year-old will be significantly more expensive than coverage for a 25-year-old. It’s a smart idea to get coverage while you’re young and healthy to lock in low monthly rates.

How does critical illness insurance work with other policies?

Critical illness insurance is a great way to complement your health insurance, but it’s not a replacement – in fact, some states won’t let you purchase critical illness insurance if you don’t have health insurance. It works best with other insurance products to make sure you’re covered no matter what happens.

Final Thoughts

Critical illness insurance is one of the best ways to prevent high costs when facing a serious illness or condition – and the peace of mind it can provide is priceless. It’s a great choice to complement a high deductible health plan or to add additional protection in case of unexpected health events. If you think you’re someone who could benefit from critical illness insurance, you should now be more prepared to find the best coverage for you. If you’re ready to take the next step, get your personalized, no-commitment price today to see how affordable your coverage could be.

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Additional Disclosure Information


Pre-existing Condition. Pre-existing condition means a sickness or physical condition for which, during the 12 months before the issue date or last reinstatement date, the insured person received medical consultation, diagnosis, advice or treatment from a physician or had taken prescribed medication. No benefits will be paid for a critical illness that is caused by a pre-existing condition unless the date of diagnosis is after the policy has been in force for 12 months from the issue date or last reinstatement date.

Waiting Period. Waiting period means the 30 days following the issue date or ten days following the last policy reinstatement date. The date of diagnosis of a covered critical illness must be made while the coverage is in force and after any waiting period. No benefits will be paid if a diagnosis or a medical consultation that leads to diagnosis of invasive cancer or non-invasive cancer occurs during the waiting period. If cancer is diagnosed during the waiting period, benefits will be paid for a subsequent diagnosis of cancer if the insured person is symptom- and treatment-free for at least 12 consecutive months and in complete remission prior to subsequent diagnosis.

Misstatement of Age and/or Gender. If the insured person’s age and/or gender has been misstated, an adjustment in premiums, coverage or both will be made based on the correct age and/or gender. If, according to the correct age, the coverage provided by the policy would not have become effective or would have ceased, Assurity’s only liability during the period in which the insured person was not eligible for coverage shall be limited to a refund of premiums.

Misstatement of Tobacco Use. If, during the first two years of the policy, the tobacco status of the insured person has been misstated, Assurity will revise the policy’s benefit amount to the amount the premium paid would have purchased using the correct tobacco status on the issue date.

The policy will not pay benefits for losses that are caused by or are the result of an insured person:

  • being exposed to war or any act of war, declared or undeclared;
  • actively serving in any of the armed forces or units auxiliary thereto, including the National Guard or Army Reserve, except during active duty training of less than 60 days;
  • engaging in hang-gliding, hot air ballooning, bungee jumping, parachuting, scuba diving, sail gliding, motor vehicle racing, parasailing, parakiting, mountain or rock climbing, B.A.S.E. jumping, sky diving or cave diving;
  • being addicted to drugs or suffering from alcoholism;
  • being intoxicated (as determined by the laws governing the operation of motor vehicles in the jurisdiction where loss occurs) or under the influence of an illegal substance or a narcotic (except for narcotics used as prescribed to the insured person by a physician);
  • committing or attempting to commit a felony;
  • being incarcerated in a penal institution or government detention facility;
  • engaging in an illegal occupation;
  • intentionally self-inflicting an injury; or
  • committing or attempting to commit suicide, while sane or insane.

Policy Form No. I H1820 underwritten by Assurity Life Insurance Company, Lincoln, NE.

IMPORTANT NOTICE— CRITICAL ILLNESS INSURANCE PROVIDES LIMITED BENEFIT COVERAGE. It is not a comprehensive major medical plan or Medicare supplement policy and does not satisfy the requirement for minimum essential coverage under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). It is not a substitute for major medical insurance and may not be appropriate for Medicaid recipients.

This policy may contain reductions of benefits, limitations and exclusions. Click here for standard Limitations and Exclusions. Product availability, features, rates, limitations and exclusions may vary by state. The state specific policy form is the ultimate authority for any questions about this product.

*In some states, diagnosis of cancer during the first 30 days following the policy’s issue date results in a significant benefit reduction or policy cancellation. The percentage benefit amount payable for invasive and non-invasive cancer combined cannot exceed 100%.

**Heart attack does not include established (old) myocardial infarction occurring prior to the issue date, sudden cardiac arrest, cardiac arrest or cardiopulmonary arrest.

Assurity reserves the right to order, at the company’s expense, evidence of insurability which the company feels is necessary for the prudent evaluation of the risk.

Assurity is a marketing name for the mutual holding company Assurity Group, Inc. and its subsidiaries. Those subsidiaries include but are not limited to: Assurity Life Insurance Company and Assurity Life Insurance Company of New York. Insurance products and services are offered by Assurity Life Insurance Company in all states except New York. In New York, insurance products and services are offered by Assurity Life Insurance Company of New York, Albany, NY. Product availability, features and rates may vary by state.