Is my UK insurance policy still valid after moving to the Emirates?

I have a life policy that I took out before I moved to the UAE from an insurance company in the UK. I have heard conflicting views about whether it is still valid and my UK broker doesn’t seem to know. How do I find out if I am still insured? EM, Dubai

If the plan is a UK life assurance policy and is for death benefits only, then provided it was taken out before you had any intention of moving to the UAE and premiums are paid by direct debit from a UK bank account, then the plan will be valid in the majority of cases. However, you should still notify the insurance company of your current address and also request formal clarification. The matter is complicated if the plan includes critical illness cover, as few UK insurers will provide continued cover if that is part of the plan. The UK broker who arranged the plan ought to be able to assist, but you can also seek advice locally or contact the insurance company directly for confirmation. I strongly recommend that if you are told it is still valid that you get the confirmation in writing. Anyone who has a UK life policy, particularly one that includes critical illness cover, should notify the insurer that they are now resident in the UAE, as this is part of the standard policy conditions. It would also be wise to check that they are still insured. There is little point paying premiums for a plan that is invalid. It would be a major worry if you think you have protected your family to find this is not the case. Insurers will always seek to verify a situation in the event of a claim. Someone who is resident in the UAE cannot arrange new life assurance policies with UK-based insurers, so advice should be sought in the offshore market for replacement cover if required.

Keren Bobker is an independent financial adviser with Holborn Assets in Dubai, with more than 20 years’ experience. Contact her at Follow her on Twitter at @FinancialUAE.

The advice provided in our columns does not constitute legal advice and is provided for information only. Readers are encouraged to seek appropriate independent legal advice.

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