06/12/11

By Matt Haswell, Associate Director in Smith & Williamson’s Employee Benefits Team

Companies could be saving thousands of pounds by negotiating cuts in premiums for staff insurance schemes, but time could be running out to make the most of this opportunity.

There are some great bargains to be struck at the moment, but it’s doubtful that today’s attractive rates from insurers will be sustained.

Insurers are currently offering competitive terms on popular employee benefits like income protection policies, healthcare, critical illness and other group risk insurance schemes. We’ve seen employers reduce premiums by around 30% — without cutting staff benefits — but most firms are simply unaware of what’s out there.

Businesses with relatively high employment costs are particularly well-placed to benefit, but it’s up to employers to make the most of the situation while they can. We don’t know how long insurers’ terms will remain competitive, so it’s a case of ‘buy now while stocks last’.

Given that insurance schemes are frequently renewed at the beginning of the year, now is the time to talk to your adviser or broker, or get an alternative quote. Don’t leave it too late to try to renegotiate.

The main point to remember is that it should not be necessary to cut staff benefits to achieve savings in premiums, so this is a win-win situation for both employers and employees.

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But why are there bargains out there now? The move towards flexible benefits platforms has increased competition in the group insurance market. Increasingly, group risk schemes are being administered on these platforms and insurers recognise the efficiencies that this can allow. Insurers are therefore offering very competitive premium rates in order to win market share.


To talk about how to make the most of this opportunity and reduce your insurance premiums, contact Matt Haswell on 020 7131 4459 or email matt.haswell@smith.williamson.co.uk

Disclaimer: By necessity, this article can only provide a short overview and it is essential to seek professional advice before applying its contents. No responsibility can be taken for any loss arising from action taken or refrained from on the basis of this publication. Details correct at time of writing.

Smith & Williamson Employee Benefit Consultants is a division of Smith & Williamson Financial Services Limited which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority. The FSA does not regulate all the services mentioned above.


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