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Protect your lifestyle with critical illness insurance

Nobody wants to spend time thinking about the possibility of a major illness. But life is unpredictable. And it pays to be protected and prepared, if you or a family member are diagnosed with a life-altering illness and you’re suddenly unable to work. The right critical illness insurance can offer financial stability at an especially challenging time, allowing you to focus on what’s most important: a strong and full recovery.

What we offer

If you’re shopping for critical illness insurance in Canada, Critical Assist® or Critical Assist® – Head Start from Co-operators is a great place to start. Adding to your standard coverage (for a wide range of conditions) are valuable benefits, like family-counselling services and direct access to medical experts. Read more about our solutions below and see if critical illness insurance is worth it for you.

Critical Assist®

Critical Assist® provides you and your family with a tax-free1 lump-sum payout – ranging from $25,000 to $2,000,000, depending on your level of coverage – if you’re diagnosed with one of 25 covered illnesses, or one of four Early Assist conditions. If the illness falls under our Early Assist program, you’re eligible for a partial payment — 10% of the policy face amount, up to a maximum of $50,000 — that offers financial support for these less severe conditions, and allows your policy to remain in force should you need to make a claim for the full amount in the future. In either case, the benefit can be used any way you wish. For example, it can help you:

  • Pay off a mortgage or loan
  • Cover childcare, housekeeping and other day-to-day costs
  • Subsidize additional health care that isn’t covered by a provincial plan
  • Keep up on TFSA, RRSP and RESP contributions

What's covered?

Critical Assist® provides coverage for 25 full-payout conditions. Here is the list of critical illnesses that are covered:

  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Aortic surgery
  • Aplastic anemia
  • Bacterial meningitis
  • Benign brain tumour
  • Blindness
  • Cancer (life-threatening)
  • Coma
  • Coronary artery bypass surgery
  • Deafness
  • Heart attack
  • Heart valve replacement
  • Kidney failure
  • Loss of independent existence2
  • Loss of limbs
  • Loss of speech
  • Major organ failure while on waiting list
  • Major organ transplant
  • Motor neuron disease
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Occupational HIV infection
  • Paralysis
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Severe burns
  • Stroke

Note: Coverage for full-payout conditions (except for loss of independent existence2) begins on the policy date3 and ends at expiry (age 75). Once you've received payment for a full-payout condition, your Critical Assist® coverage ends.

Beyond the covered conditions listed above, you’re also covered for four Early Assist partial-payout conditions. That means a partial benefit – equal to 10% of the face amount, up to a maximum of $50,000 – is payable, upon diagnoses of one of the following:

  • Coronary angioplasty
  • Non-invasive cancers:
    • Ductal carcinoma in situ of the breast (DCIS)
    • Stage T1a or T1b (stage A) prostate cancer
    • Stage 1A malignant melanoma (melanoma less than or equal to 1.0 mm in thickness)

Note: The policy will continue to cover you after a partial payment is made. You are eligible for only one Early Assist partial payment. There is no reduction of the policy face amount, if an Early Assist benefit is paid.

What's available?

At Co-operators, we offer four Critical Assist® plans to suit your needs:

  • Level premiums for 10 years and renewable for successive 10-year periods to age 75 (CA 10)
  • Level premiums for 25 years and renewable for successive 20-year periods to age 75 (CA 25)
  • Level premiums to age 75 (CA 75)
  • Level premiums for 20 years with coverage to age 75 (CA 20-Pay)

Note: The policy is available for ages 18 through 65 for CA 10 and CA 75, or ages 18 through 50 for CA 25 and CA 20-Pay.

Critical Assist® - Head Start

Critical Assist® – Head Start is designed to bring financial peace of mind, if your child is diagnosed with a covered condition. This helps you meet new or ongoing expenses, while you focus on your child’s illness and recovery. Benefits are paid in a tax-free1 lump sum and can range from $25,000 to $250,000, depending on the level of coverage you choose. You can initiate a plan for any child between the age of 30 days and 17 years. Every policy expires at the anniversary nearest age 75.

What's covered?

In addition to the 25 full-payout covered conditions and the four Early Assist partial-payout conditions, Critical Assist® – Head Start offers full-payout coverage for seven childhood-specific conditions:

  • Autism
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Congenital heart disease
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Muscular dystrophy
  • Rett syndrome
  • Type 1 diabetes mellitus

What else you should know

A variety of additional features can be accessed through different Critical Assist and Critical Assist® – Head Start policies:
Premium payback at death
If you pass away while your policy is in force, and if no full-payout claim has been paid, we will refund all of the premium payments you’ve made. This money will be paid directly to your beneficiary.
Conversion privileges
It’s easy to convert a 10-year or 25-year policy into longer-term coverage. Choose from level premiums to age 75 or level premiums for 20 years. No additional underwriting or proof of insurability is required.
Teladoc Medical Experts®
You have instant access to Teladoc Medical Experts®, a global network of more than 50,000 leading medical specialists. These experts can confirm your diagnosis, offer additional information and guidance about your condition, and help you find medical support in your area.
Counselling benefit
Upon diagnosis of a covered condition, you or your family members can take advantage of up to three hours of complimentary phone counselling.
Optional riders and benefits
You can customize your 75-year policy or 20-pay policy by adding optional critical illness riders and benefits, including: the Premium Payback at Expiry rider, the Premium Payback at Surrender rider, the Disability Premium Waiver benefit, and the Automatic Waiver of Premium (upon owner’s death or disability).

Find your critical illness coverage

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View our Getting Started Guide to initiate the life insurance discussion with your loved ones.

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Download our Advisor Discussion Guide to help start the conversation with your financial advisor.

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