I finally started thinking about getting some kind of financial protection on Monday, but I've since discovered most insurers won't pay out for alcohol abuse - which could be a problem in my career as a journalist!
It’s a well-known fact journalists tend to drink quite heavily at industry lunches and parties because it's a key networking opportunity for contacts and stories, and then get very little time in bed to recover.
Taking out some sort of financial protection would probably be sensible, but after doing a Google search for income protection (IP) and critical illness (CI) cover I came across various websites saying alcoholism is usually excluded from such policies.
Indeed, Kevin Carr, senior technical adviser at Lifesearch, tells me if a policyholder has a self-inflicted injury – such as alcoholism – which specifically and directly causes the illness they claim on, most insurers are likely to exclude it.
This is more common in CI claims, but some insurers also exclude self-inflicted injuries from IP policies as well.
Fortunately I don’t think I’m an alcoholic just yet, but it depends how the industry interprets the term and whether this interpretation will change with the rise in binge drinking.
The Collins dictionary definition of alcoholism reads: “Condition in which dependence on alcohol harms a person’s health, social functioning, or family life.”
The word ‘or’ is slightly disconcerting because I’m sure all the alcohol I consume at various industry events is damaging my health in one way or another!
As a result, I’ve decided to keep a running track of how many pints/glasses/shots I drink as a sort of ‘beer rating’ of industry parties.
I’m off to the Edinburgh Fringe with a well-known life company this weekend, and it’s more than likely the beer rating will be “I consumed my weekly recommended allowance in one evening”.
I’d be really interested to hear what sort of cover IFAs would recommend to someone whose job requires - okay maybe not requires but tends to make it difficult to say no - the consumption of vast quantities of alcohol.
If you have any comments you would like to add to this story or would like to speak to its author about a similar subject, telephone Emily Perryman on 020 7968 4554 or email [email protected].IFAonline
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