Aviva pays over £413 million in Group Protection claims during 2023

Two people hugging
  • More than £1.1 million paid every day for employees and their families through Group Protection policies
  • £1.15 billion paid in group protection claims over the past 3 years
  • 83% of employees helped by Aviva’s rehabilitation services remained in or made a successful return to work

Aviva paid £413,783,489 in Group Protection claims for 8,077 employees and their dependants in 20231.

Last year’s Group Protection claims payment is the equivalent of paying out more than £1.1 million for employees and their families every day across group income protection, group critical illness and group life insurance claims.

Aviva’s 2024 Group Protection Claims and Wellbeing Insight Report, published today, also reveals that Aviva has paid more than £1.15 billion in Group Protection claims over the last three years. Cancer continues to be the leading cause of claim across all three products.

Together with the recently announced Individual Protection claims figures, Aviva paid more than £1.59 billion claims to protection customers and their loved one’s last year, totalling more than 58,600 claims.

Group Income Protection

In 2023, over £116 million was paid in Group Income Protection benefit for new and existing claims to 5,361 claimants, with an average amount of £21,820 paid in the year per claim.

In 2023, over £116 million was paid in Group Income Protection benefit for new and existing claims to 5,361 claimants, with an average amount of £21,820 paid in the year per claim.

Consistent with previous years, cancer was the most common reason for making a claim accounting for nearly a quarter (24%) of new claims.

Mental health conditions made up almost a fifth (19%) of new claims, followed by orthopedic (16%) and neurological conditions (12%).

For 2023 new claims, the average age of an insured member was 48 years old. The youngest was 19 years old and the oldest was aged 69 years.

Rehabilitation continues to be a key strength for Aviva. The number of employees receiving rehabilitation support last year increased by 11% compared to 2022. 

A total of 2,782 employees received support across 286 UK employers in 2023. Over 900 employees with more complex conditions were referred to Aviva’s rehabilitation partner network for private treatment and specialist support.

Over four fifths (83%) of employees who received rehabilitation support either remained in or made a successful return to work.

Half of the cases requiring early intervention support were for mental health, up slightly from 47% in 2022. Almost nine in ten (87%) employees completing mental health rehabilitation in 2023 successfully returned to – or remained at work and, of these, 96% returned to work within the scheme deferred period, meaning that their employer didn’t need to make a claim on their Group Income Protection policy.  This was up from 93% in 2022.

Musculoskeletal conditions made up (15%) of total referrals for rehabilitation support in 2023. Over nine in ten (95%) employees returned to work and 96% of these returned to work within the deferred period, up by 4% compared to 2022.

Just under one in ten (9%) of our new rehabilitation cases were to support people living with cancer and 70% of cancer survivors we supported returned to work or remained at work.  

While neurological conditions only accounted for 5% of all referrals for rehabilitation support, 2023 saw a 35% uplift in the number of cases for conditions like stroke, brain injury and multiple sclerosis being referred for specialist support from the Neurological Pathway.

Although still a concern for employers, the proportion of cases relating to long COVID decreased in 2023, making up just 5% of referrals. This may be a result of improved prognosis related to new cases of the condition. However, the long-term impact of COVID-19 continues to be monitored by group protection providers.

Neurodiversity accounted for 3% of all referrals for rehabilitation in 2023. Nearly eight in ten (79%) employees seeking help through the Neurodiversity Pathway returned to work and 100% of these did so within the deferred period. 

As employers increasingly turn to their group risk benefit providers to offer wellbeing support, Aviva also saw increased engagement with many of the added value services available with its Group Protection policies.

Group Critical Illness

In 2023 Aviva paid out more than £41 million on 572 Group Critical Illness claims, with an average amount of £71,746 paid out.

Almost two-thirds (64%) of claims were paid for those aged between 40-59, with the average age being 48 and the youngest being children who were diagnosed with a covered condition at birth.

With seven in ten (70%) claims relating to cancer, it was by far the most common reason for claim. This was followed by heart attack (7%), stroke (6%), Multiple Sclerosis and benign brain tumour (both 3%).

For Children’s Critical Illness claims, Aviva paid £375,928 for 30 children, at an average claim amount of £12,531.

Through ‘Project Teddy’ Aviva’s claims team took the time to support each family and learn about the child and their siblings to send appropriate toys and gifts.

Group Life Insurance

Aviva paid 2,144 Group Life Insurance claims last year totalling more than £255.7 million.
The average amount paid out was £117,663.

Cancer made up over a third of Group Life claims (38%), followed by heart disease (16%), stroke (3%), suicide (3%), and respiratory conditions (3%).  Over half (54%) of claims were made for insured members aged between 40-59 years.

For new claims made in 2023, the youngest insured member was 16 years old and the oldest aged 74 years (Lump sum). The average age of insured members was 54 years.

We’re pleased to share the second edition of Aviva’s Group Protection and Wellbeing Insight Report, and proud of the value that we continue to deliver for employers and their employees through our group protection support.

Jason Ellis, Group Protection Sales Director at Aviva said: “We’re pleased to share the second edition of Aviva’s Group Protection and Wellbeing Insight Report, and proud of the value that we continue to deliver for employers and their employees through our group protection support. 

“The insight clearly demonstrates how we’re supporting employees and their loved ones through difficult times, not only financially, but also through specialist wellbeing services and rehabilitation expertise.

“Through our group income protection, we remain focused on helping employees stay at work, or return to work as soon as possible. Last year four in five employees referred for rehabilitation support had this positive outcome.

“This success was enabled through the dedication and commitment of our claims and rehabilitation experts, and through pathways introduced to support more complex conditions such as cancer, neurological conditions, mental health, and neurodiversity.

“For group life our focus continues to be on making it as quick and easy as possible to access financial support. On average, it took just over 3 days to settle our group life claims, helping to make life slightly easier at a challenging time. Through services such as Red Apple Law,2 available to help with life planning and estate administration tools, we’ve extended this support further.

“Through our group critical illness, Project Teddy enables our claims teams to go one step further, by hand-picking gifts for customers to help bring some light to a difficult time.

“Our 2023 report clearly shows the continued need for group protection and the value it offers to employers and their workforce. As growth continues to be strong in the market, it’s reassuring that more employers are recognising the benefits of looking after the physical, mental, and financial wellbeing of their workforce, both to manage business risk and to retain and attract talent.” 

Group Protection claims summary - 2023:


Group Life Group Income Protection Group Critical Illness (inc. Child Cover)

Number of claims paid

2,144 5,361* 572

Total paid

£255,766,240 £116,978.322* £41,038,927

Average paid

£117,633  £21,820 £71,746

Youngest age at claim

16 19 At birth

Average age at claim

54 48 48

Oldest age at claim

74 (Lump sum) 69 69

Most common claims conditions


Heart condition





Mental illness




Heart attack


Multiple sclerosis

Benign brain tumour

*Includes new and existing claims



1. All data quoted is provided by Aviva’s claims and rehabilitation department and is based on January-December 2023 outcomes.

2.These services are non-contractual benefits Aviva can change or withdraw at any time. 


Amber Scott

Protection and Health, Regulation

Notes to editors:

  • We are the UK's leading diversified insurer and we operate in the UK, Ireland and Canada. We also have international investments in India and China.
  • We help our 19.2 million (as at 31 December 2023) customers make the most out of life, plan for the future, and have the confidence that if things go wrong we’ll be there to put it right.
  • We have been taking care of people for more than 325 years, in line with our purpose of being ‘with you today, for a better tomorrow’. In 2023, we paid £25.6 billion in claims and benefits to our customers.
  • In 2021, we announced our ambition to become Net Zero by 2040, the first major insurance company in the world to do so. We are aiming to have Net Zero carbon emissions from Aviva’s operations and supply chain by 2030. While we are working towards our sustainability ambitions, we recognise that while we have control over Aviva’s operations and influence on our supply chain, when it comes to decarbonising the economy in which we operate and invest, Aviva is one part of a far larger global ecosystem. There are also limits to our ability to influence other organisations and governments. Nevertheless, we remain focused on the task and are committed to playing our part in the collective effort to enable the global transition. Find out more about our climate goals at www.aviva.com/climate-goals and our sustainability ambition and action at www.aviva.com/sustainability
  • Aviva is a Living Wage, Living Pension and Living Hours employer and provides market-leading benefits for our people, including flexible working, paid carers leave and equal parental leave. Find out more at https://www.aviva.com/about-us/our-people/
  • As at 31 December 2023, total Group assets under management at Aviva Group were £376 billion and our estimated Solvency II shareholder capital surplus as at 31 March 2024 was £8.5 billion. Our shares are listed on the London Stock Exchange and we are a member of the FTSE 100 index.
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