End of cheap life cover looms for women

Women have just a small window of opportunity to make the most of cheap life insurance premiums before EU rules on gender kick in, significantly pushing up prices.

Life cover has traditionally been much cheaper for women than men because of their greater life expectancy, and premium prices have recently fallen to historical lows.

But this will all change by the end of the year and consumers could see premiums jump by up to a third as gender discrimination is eradicated in response to the request from Brussels.

"Life insurance is designed to protect your dependants if the breadwinner of the family dies and can no longer provide financially for the family," says Matt Morris of protection specialist adviser LifeSearch.

"Anyone who has dependants or is expecting to have children soon should consider buying life insurance while prices are low.

With premiums rising by the end of the year, make sure you buy your policy asap as underwriting takes time and anyone who has not been accepted by 21 December may be affected by the increases."

More than half the UK's population have no life cover, rising to 60 per cent among women, insurance provider Beagle Street has found.

"With tax changes also impacting some providers from January 2013, the life insurance industry is facing irreversible changes to the way it does business," adds Matthew Gledhill, managing director.

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