HIV policy

The Association of British Insurers (ABI) issued a Statement of Best Practice on HIV and Insurance during 2005, which all members, of which we are one, had to comply with by 30 September 2005. We support the Statement of Best Practice and were fully compliant by this date.

For further details of the most recent statement of best practice refer to PDF file: ABI Statement of Best Practice on HIV and Insurance PDF size: 96KB .

Key Points

Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS) is caused by the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). The body's immune system is damaged by the virus and results in opportunistic infections or rare types of malignancy.

Despite advances in treatment, AIDS remains extremely relevant to underwriting as the short-term mortality risk remains high and there is no known cure.

We currently decline applicants with AIDS, or who are infected with HIV.

Each insurance company needs to have a policy on requesting HIV tests - a copy of our PDF file: Policy on asking an applicant to take an HIV test (Q32252) PDF size: 36KB is available.

Requesting a HIV test is through direct correspondence with your client. We are unable to disclose to an adviser that their client is required to have a HIV test. For details of the insurance guidelines visit: British Medical Association website or Association of British Insurers website

We will not:

  • Ask a client about their sexuality.
  • Request random HIV testing.
  • Request HIV testing solely due to an applicant's occupation or solely for joint life applications on the lives of two males.

Underwriting considerations

  • The application form asks whether an applicant has ever tested positive for HIV or whether a result is outstanding.
  • The applicant is not asked whether they have ever had a negative HIV test.
  • HIV testing for high sums assured.
  • If a client refuses to undergo a HIV test we will be unable to offer cover.

Requirement for a HIV test

The following circumstances will result in a HIV test being requested:

  • Having been diagnosed with a sexually transmitted disease(s) with long-term health implications.
  • Being resident or visiting in a non-UK country with high HIV prevalence within the last five years.
  • Routine evidence request for clients under 60 applying for a total sum assured of £1,000,001 and above and for clients 60 or over for total sum assured of £2,000,001 and above.
  • Intravenous drug use over 5 years ago (if within 5 years the case will be declined)
  • Blood transfusion or product outside the following countries: The United Kingdom, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, The Channel Islands, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Holland, Isle of Man, Italy, Luxembourg, New Zealand, Portugal, Republic of Ireland (EIRE), Spain, Sweden and the USA.