Our customers

Record £900m paid to Aviva's protection customers in 2017

We paid out more than £900 million last year to individual protection customers, with 97.2% of all claims accepted. It's made a real difference to more than 25,000 customers and their families as we settled more claims than ever before.

  • More claims settled than ever last year as 25,000 customers and their families benefited from individual protection payments
  • Around £2.5 million was paid every day to individual life, critical illness and income protection customers and their families in 2017 – that’s £1,700 every minute
  • 98.9% of life insurance, 93.2% critical illness and 88.8% of income protection claims were paid in 2017
£2.5 million

Paid out every day by Aviva in protection claims


Life insurance claims paid


Average sum paid for critical illness claims

42 years old

Average age of customers making an income protection claim

More than £900 million was paid out last year to customers with Aviva individual protection policies, an increase of £30 million from 2016, with just 2.8% of all claims received being declined.

The UK’s largest insurer paid more than £525 million to the families of life insurance customers who had died or to customers diagnosed with a terminal illness last year. £337 million was paid out to customers diagnosed with critical illness, and more than £38 million of benefits were paid to customers with income protection cover or fracture claim benefits.

The statistics reveal that more than 25,000 customers and their families benefited from life, critical illness and income protection insurance policies during 2017, an increase from 23,000 in 2016. This includes more than 16,000 customers claiming for life and terminal illness, more than 4,000 claiming for a critical illness and more than 4,000 income protection and fracture cover claims.

Many of these customers were also supported by additional services such as Aviva’s rehabilitation case management for income protection customers, Second Opinion by Best Doctors ® and a counselling and carer support telephone service by Workplace Options.

During the year, 98.9% of life insurance claims and 93.2% of critical illness claims were paid, up from 92.3% in 2016. For income protection, 88.8% of claims were paid based on the new ABI methodology of stating new claims received in the year that were accepted, an increase from 84% of claims paid in 2016 based on the same methodology.

Of the small number of critical illness claims which were not paid, 1.2% were declined due to non-disclosure and 5.2% for conditions not being met. The most common reasons for an income protection claim being declined was due to the definition of disability not being met, followed by misrepresentation of important medical information either before the policy was taken out or following an accepted claim.

Most common causes of critical illness claims

  • Cancer


  • Heart attack


  • Stroke


  • Children's critical illness


  • Other


Key statistics for 2017 include:

  • The average sum paid to critical illness customers was £79,162.
  • Cancer remains the most common cause of critical illness claims at 62% of all claims, followed by heart attack (9%), stroke (6%), children’s critical illness (5%) and multiple sclerosis (4%).
  • Mental health conditions accounted for the majority of income protection claims at 28%, followed by musculoskeletal (15%) and cancer (9%).
  • The average age at which customers claim is 42 years on income protection and 47 for critical illness.

"Our claims data shows the sheer scale of the vital financial support that we provide to customers and their families, helping them at some of the most difficult times of their lives. Last year saw our biggest ever payout of £900 million, making a real difference to the financial wellbeing of more than 25,000 customers and their families. 

“We know that consumers are doubtful and worry that insurers don’t pay claims but these figures and the wider protection industry’s claims data show that this is simply not true. At Aviva we are committed to paying as many claims as we can, shown through the increase in our claims paid rates and our overall rate of 97.2% of all claims paid. We are equally committed to providing our customers with an exceptional, quick claims service and additional support services to help them when it matters most.”


Media enquiries:

Melissa Loughran: 07800 691947 or Melissa.loughran@aviva.com

Notes to editors:

  • Aviva provides life insurance, general insurance, health insurance and asset management to 33 million customers.
  • In the UK we are the leading insurer serving one in every four households and have strong businesses in selected markets in Europe, Asia and Canada. Our shares are listed on the London Stock Exchange and we are a member of the FTSE100 index.  
  • Aviva’s asset management business, Aviva Investors, provides asset management services to both Aviva and external clients, and currently manages over £350 billion in assets. Total group assets under management at Aviva group are £490 billion.
  • Aviva helps people save for the future and manage the risks of everyday life; we paid out £34.6 billion in benefits and claims in 2017.
  • By serving our customers well, we are building a business which is strong and sustainable, which our people are proud to work for, and which makes a positive contribution to society.
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