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Compare income protection quotes

Find a policy that can help cover your outgoings if you’re unable to work due to an accident, sickness or redundancy.
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*Based on mortgage cover with accidents, sickness & unemployment selected, for a 30-year-old, non-smoking male (May 2024)

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What is income protection insurance?

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Income protection is sometimes called accident insurance, redundancy insurance, or sickness insurance. It can help you or your family if you're unable to work because of illness or redundancy.

It can provide some much-needed cash at a difficult time so you’re able to pay your household bills and meet other costs.

How much cover you need depends on several factors, including whether you have dependents and what your regular outgoings are.

Sickness benefits

It’s worth noting up-front that not everyone needs income protection. For example, sick pay may already be included in your workplace benefits or pension scheme.

But if it isn’t or you don’t have a workplace pension with these benefits, or you’re self-employed, you might benefit from having income protection cover.

If you don’t have any income protection insurance or long-term sickness pay at work, or you’re self-employed or freelance, then you might benefit from having income protection cover.

How does it work?

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How does income protection insurance work?

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With income protection insurance you pay a monthly premium in return for cover. In this case, a proportion of your lost pay as a result of an inability to work, so you can afford to continue managing the household budget.

The amount you may pay in premiums, plus the level of cover will differ between policies. Some people will pay up to 60% of their income until they’re able to return to work, up to, for example, £60,000 a year. 

Shop around for the best type of income protection cover to suit your needs.


  • Your household costs 

  • Your salary

  • Members of your family who might be dependent on you

  • Your intended retirement age

As long as you continue to pay your premiums, you'll be covered.

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Income Protection options

You can buy various types of income protection insurance, with options that are designed to suit specific requirements. The main ones are:

Mortgage protection insurance

This covers the cost of repaying your mortgage if you are unable to work due to sickness, injury or redundancy. Find out more about how mortgage protection insurance works.

Redundancy insurance

This is often called unemployment insurance because it pays out if you lose your job and need cover for household expenses should your income drop as a result.

Accident and sickness insurance

If you're injured or ill and unable to work this covers you until you’re well enough to restart work by paying a regular replacement income based on the sum you have insured.

Loan protection insurance

If you have a lot of personal loans, or one large loan, and you’d struggle to make repayments if your income dropped, this cover can help you pay the monthly instalments.

What are the different types of income protection insurance?

You can buy cover for the short term – for up to five years, or you can set up a long-term income protection policy which might cover the whole of your working life.

Short term income protection cover


Short-term income protection insurance pays out a monthly sum from the insurer if you need to make a claim and the claim is successful. 

This type of cover can help you pay bills and meet expenses in the short term.

Although short-term cover is cheaper, there are likely to be more exclusions and it may cover fewer illnesses or issues. 

Also, the monthly payment will be paid out for a set time, and not for the rest of your working life, so you’ll eventually have to find other ways to pay for your outgoings.


Short-term income protection insurance can be a welcome help for a time while you recover, find a new job, or adjust to a new way of working.

Long term income protection cover

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Long-term income protection insurance is sometimes known as permanent health insurance.

This is a much more comprehensive policy, but it is also much more expensive than short-term cover.

If you make a claim, you’ll receive a regular income until you can return to work. If you’re unable to return to work, the policy will pay a regular sum until the policy term ends, or until you die or retire. The exact payment terms and policy details will depend on the type of policy you buy, and what options you pick.


As this is a much more comprehensive product and the benefits are greater, your monthly premium will also be higher than for a short-term insurance policy.

How much will income protection insurance cost?

When you receive a quote for income protection cover it will be the monthly cost of the premium. 

Depending on your policy, your premiums will either be:

  • Fixed for the term of the policy, which means they won’t rise

  • Variable, which means that your policy could become more expensive over time

The best way to find a good-value income protection policy is to shop around. You can do this quickly and easily by comparing quotes with Uswitch. 

Understanding income protection

How much income protection insurance cover do I need?

This depends on your salary, lifestyle and current costs. 

You may not need or be able to afford insurance to cover your total salary in your income protection plan. But the monthly payout should be enough to cover your current household costs and other expenses.

Which costs need to be covered if you're out of work?

Go through your recent bank statements and work out what you spend on food, mortgage, rent, travel, living and other costs in an average month. This’ll give you a basic idea of how much you’d need to find just to pay for essentials.

After this, you can work out where you might have to economise if you were unable to work.

Comparing and Switching Life Insurance Policies

Finding the right insurance policy can allow you to relax in the knowledge that your family is protected. Compare, buy or switch life insurance policies within minutes.

Finding life insurance with no medical

Can you get life insurance with no medical? Read our guide to find out whether you fit the requirements, then get a quote for no medical life insurance.

Life insurance for women

Traditionally, men have been the more likely to get life insurance, but it is just as important for women, especially for those planning to start a family.

Over 50s life insurance

When you're over 50 life insurance can provide important financial security. But choosing the right policy could save you money and better protect your family

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Uswitch Income protection insurance service is provided by Howden Life & Health Ltd of Ageas House, The Square, Gloucester Business Park, Brockworth, Gloucester, GL3 4ZP Howden Life & Health Ltd registered in England & Wales company number 3040737. Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Firm reference number 176392 as detailed on the Financial Services Register. Our service is free and compares a wide range of trusted household names. is an intermediary and receives commission from Howden Life & Health Ltd which is based on a percentage of the total annual premium if you decide to buy through our website. We pride ourselves on impartiality on independence - therefore we don't promote any one insurance provider over another.