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Insurance information for people with muscular dystrophy

Insurance is a financial product sold by insurance companies. It protects you from the financial loss caused by an unexpected event. For people with muscle wasting and weakening conditions, finding certain kinds of insurance may be harder as insurers may see you as more likely to make a claim. They legally cannot refuse to insure you; however, they can charge higher premiums because of this risk.  

Types of insurance you may need

There are several types of insurance that you may need or should consider. Some are legally required, such as Third-Party car insurance, and some are advised, such as travel insurance.

Types of insurance you may need include:

  • Travel insurance
  • Equipment insurance
  • Car insurance
  • Life insurance

It’s important to get advice to make sure you have all the information you need before taking out an insurance policy.

Getting insured with a disability or life-limiting condition

The Equality Act 2010 exists to protect you from discrimination. However, the law does allow insurers to differentiate between disabled and non-disabled people if there is evidence that a disabled person is at a higher risk of making a claim.

When you buy insurance, you enter into a contract with an insurance company. Either a one-off payment or regular payments are made to the insurance company, who will provide you with cover. If a situation arises, such as needing medical treatment abroad or damage to your wheelchair when travelling, they will then pay your claim (if it’s covered in your policy). The amount you’re paid depends on your policy. 

Disclaimer: Whilst we have listed insurance companies on this page, we do not endorse them. When choosing insurance, please make sure you have read the terms and conditions of the policy in detail to make sure it is suitable for your needs. 

Getting travel insurance

Travel insurance can provide financial protection if you encounter certain problems while you are on holiday or travelling, such as becoming ill, damage to your luggage or equipment, or cancellations.

When applying for travel insurance, you will be asked questions about your medical history. it is important to be completely honest and to tell them of any conditions that you have. These are called ‘pre-existing’ conditions. If you do not tell them and then you need to make a claim, they may not pay out.

If you have a pre-existing medical condition, we recommend using MoneyHelper’s travel insurance directory to get quotes from different suppliers. MoneyHelper is provided by HM Government and the Money and Pensions Service.
The companies listed below provide travel insurance for people with medical conditions and disabilities.

All Clear Travel

Tel: 0808 281 2982


Tel: 0239 241 9080

Tel: 0330 024 9952


Tel: 01604 552925

Apply for the UK Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC)

In addition to travel insurance, you can apply for the UK Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC). This is a free medical card that lets you get state healthcare at the same cost as citizens of the country in which you are traveling. Please note, the GHIC card does not replace travel insurance.

Insuring your equipment

If you have specialist equipment, it is advisable to get equipment insurance so that both your equipment and you are protected.

If you have a powered wheelchair or scooter, it is important to consider two types of insurance:

  • Third party insurance. This covers you in case you have an accident and injure someone else or damage property.
  • Insurance against the theft of, or damage to, your powered scooter/wheelchair.

Companies that provide insurance for mobility scooters and wheelchairs include:

First Senior Group

Tel: 01582 840 067

Fish Insurance

Tel: 0333 331 3770

Lockton Mobility Risk Services

Tel: 0345 602 8000

Mark Bates Ltd

Tel: 01476 512190


Tel: 01268 200 020

Car Insurance for your vehicle

Car insurance provides financial protection if you have an accident in your car or your car is damaged or stolen.

Car insurance for disabled drivers is the same as for other drivers. Providers cannot charge you more for having a disability, but you may need additional cover if you have an adapted vehicle, as it can be more costly to replace. Some minor adaptations do not warrant price increases, so it is important to clarify what adaptations your car has had.

You must tell the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) of a medical condition or disability which may affect your ability to drive. This includes muscle wasting or weakening conditions. If you do not tell them, you may be subject to a fine.

As well as telling the DVLA, you must also tell your insurance company. Your insurance may become invalidated if you fail to tell your insurers about your condition and about any special adaptations made to your vehicle.

Getting a life insurance policy

Life insurance is designed to provide your loved ones with financial support if you pass away. However, most people with a muscle wasting condition find it difficult to get life insurance.  

It may be possible to get it from some insurers, but at a higher price than people without a pre-existing condition. Unfortunately, some insurers may decide not to provide cover to someone with a shortened life expectancy. 

Alongside general enquiries about age and lifestyle, insurers are likely to ask about the onset of your condition, treatment, and hospitalisation records. Your consultant or GP may be able to supply further information to insurers at your request. 

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