Cover now, underwrite later

There are times when we’ll need to request additional medical evidence before we can complete our assessment of a client's application, which can sometimes cause delays.

But with our Underwrite Later option cover can be started straight away whilst we wait for the medical information we need to fully assess the application – giving your clients peace of mind that their business is protected.

Business Protection can take longer to process than personal protection because there are usually more people to be covered and the cover amounts are generally higher.

You might need to provide additional medical evidence which can increase the time it takes to underwrite the application. This could mean your client decides not to go ahead - meaning lost business for you.

But Royal London has the solution. With their Underwrite Later option, cover can start right away – after a very quick assessment. This way, almost all applicants can have life cover in place while they wait for the underwriting to be completed.

With Underwrite Later, there are no additional standard exclusions and your client’s plan will start, right away. They’ll have six months to supply their medical evidence – which could be handy if it’s difficult to arrange a face-to-face GP appointment at short notice.

So, there’s less likelihood that your client will lose interest or cancel. And, in most cases, there won’t be any changes to the terms of the plan once they’ve provided all their medical evidence.

What’s more, with Royal London you’ll have access to your own dedicated case manager and underwriter to help you through the entire process. They’ll look after all your applications, giving you regular updates by phone or email so it’s easy to keep your clients up to date.

To find out more about Underwrite Later, visit adviser.royallondon.com/underwritelater today.

Benefits of Underwrite Later

  • Up to 93% of business applications could start immediately - currently 49% of business protection applications are able to start after our initial assessment. With Underwrite Later, this could increase to 93%.
  • Full cover with no standard exclusions - clients who start their cover through Underwrite Later are fully covered with no extra exclusions added as standard. Some ‘Immediate Cover’ options in the market automatically exclude things like pre-existing conditions, travel and hazardous pursuits. Underwrite Later doesn’t automatically exclude any of these things.
  • Relieves uncertainty over the availability of face to face medicals - clients may be unable or hesitant to attend a face to face medical examination at the time their application is submitted. Being able to start the plan immediately gives the client peace of mind that they’re covered straight away and they can then go for their medical any time in the following six months.
  • Enough time to underwrite - we allow up to 6 months for underwriting and expect that around 97% of applications will complete underwriting during this time.
  • Client stays engaged - greatly reduces the risk of the client losing interest during a lengthy underwriting process and deciding not to proceed. Most clients will receive their policy documents within days of applying. 
  • Commission flexibility - commission is paid as soon as we start the plan. To reduce the risk of clawback in the event that our final underwriting decision means a reduction in premium or the plan is cancelled, you can choose to start the plan on a non-indemnity basis. This can be updated on a case by case basis on our online application. Once we have completed underwriting, you can then change your commission back to an indemnity basis and receive the rest of your initial commission as a lump sum. All you need to do is call our servicing team and we’ll do the rest.

How does it work?

We’ve created a sales aid covering all you need to know about Underwrite Later. This includes a simple diagram explaining the different stages of the process once the application has been received, as well as an example case study that demonstrates how Underwrite Later could work and benefit you and your clients.
Download sales aid

Next steps

To get a quote, or find out more information, log in to our online service.
Get a quote

Underwrite Later FAQs

No. The application still needs to be looked at by an underwriter before we can agree to start it. Although most applications will be eligible (we expect about up to 93% of applications will be able to start after this initial assessment), some applications may be too risky to start without evidence due to particular health issues the client may have.

We will assess it as normal. We expect that in most cases there will be no change to the terms offered at outset but in some cases, customers may not have disclosed or been aware of all the relevant information. In these cases, we may have to change the terms of the plan. So, the more accurate the information on your original application, the more chance we have of getting the right decision first time.

Any change in terms will we backdated to the date the cover started. This ensures that all customers pay the same premiums, whether they use Underwrite Later or not. If we increase the premium, the arrears will be collected with the next premium. If we reduce the premium, the excess paid will be refunded straight away.    

Commission is paid a soon as the plan starts. If we then change the terms of the plan on completion of underwriting, additional commission may be paid or some may be clawed back. If an adviser is concerned about the small risk of a claw back, they have the option to start the plan on a non-indemnity commission basis. Once the underwriting is completed, they can change this back to indemnity terms in order to receive the rest of the commission as a lump sum.

We’ll complete underwriting with the information we can get before any claim is paid. For example, if we’d requested a GP report, we’ll wait for this before assessing the claim.  If we requested the client goes for a medical that they had not yet attended, then if suitable, we may request alternative evidence, such as a GP report instead.

Free cover is still available on all our plans and could apply if a plan has not started with Underwrite Later. However, Free Cover comes with some standard exclusions, including any pre-existing conditions your client may have. Underwrite Later has no standard exclusions, so the cover is comprehensive. Free Cover also has some further restrictions. The cover is limited to an amount of £1m and can only last for a maximum of 90 days. There is also a maximum age of 60. Underwrite Later has a maximum cover amount of £3.5 million, can stay on risk for up to six months whilst we underwrite and has no age restrictions.  

Yes. If you’re applying online Underwrite Later is integrated into the application journey and can be applied for with the click of a button. However, if you prefer to apply through a paper application, you can still choose Underwrite Later but there’s a separate form that must be downloaded and submitted along with the main application.

Yes. If the quote for your application was started on or after 21 January 2021 and then you decide you want to use the Underwrite Later option, you can get your client to read and agree to the terms and conditions on this form. The plan owner must email this to us using the email address they provided on the application. Alternatively they could sign and post it.

This website is intended for financial advisers only and shouldn't be relied upon by any other person. If you are not an adviser please visit royallondon.com.

The Royal London Mutual Insurance Society Limited is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. The firm is on the Financial Services Register, registration number 117672. It provides life assurance and pensions. Registered in England and Wales number 99064. Registered office: 55 Gracechurch Street, London, EC3V 0RL.