Frequently asked questions – New customers 

We want to make sure that our customers have the answers to any questions they may have at this time.

Take a look at our FAQs below to discover the answers to a number of the questions you may have as one of our new customers.

If you can’t find what you’re looking for and you’d like to speak to us, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

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Guaranteed income for life, Secure Lifetime income, Care funding plan and Defined Benefit pension buy-out customers

My adviser has recently applied for a new policy from you on my behalf – will you still process it?
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Yes, we will process your application in the usual way. The majority of our colleagues are working from home, we have given them the most up-to-date technology so they can continue to operate our core systems remotely and provide you with help.

My adviser has recently applied for a new policy from you on my behalf – can I withdraw the application?
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We recommend you contact your adviser in the first instance, but if they are unwell and can't help you please click here to select the email address or telephone number to contact us and we will explain how we can help you.

My adviser says you may need a General Practitioner (“GP”) report in order to process my application – is that the case?
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Yes, that’s correct. During the height of the pandemic we temporarily altered our approach to avoid putting additional pressure on GPs. Most GPs are now able to supply GP reports as usual, but if a GP is still too busy we will ask customers to supply us with copies of their prescription or medical letters instead of a GP report; in these cases we may request a GP report later when that GP surgery has the capacity to respond to these requests.

We will keep these arrangements under review and update this area as the situation changes, so do check back from time to time.

If you do request and receive a GP report after the policy has commenced and find there is a difference in the information you received to make your underwriting decision what happens to the income paid to the customer?
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In most cases we find the differences in disclosure by the customer compared to the information provided in the GP report are not material and therefore the underwriting assessment and the level of income paid to the customer remains unchanged.  In a minority of cases where the difference is significant we may make a change to the underwriting assessment and change the income paid to the customer.  This can be an increase or a reduction in income. We have the right under the contract to backdate these changes to the policy inception date.

My care home says it is too busy to provide a Care Managers Report. I want to secure an income to pay for my care fees as quickly as possible what other options do I have?
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Regretfully, without either a GP report or a Care Managers Report we will not have enough information on the client’s individual circumstances to be able to provide an accurate quote.

Lifetime mortgage customers

I have recently applied for a lifetime mortgage from you - will you still process it?
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Yes, we will process your application. The majority of our colleagues are working from home and we’ve given them the most up-to-date technology so they can continue to operate our core systems remotely and provide you with help.  

I am in the process of applying for a lifetime mortgage with you but my circumstances have changed and I would like to borrow a larger sum than originally planned – what should I do?
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We recommend you contact your adviser in the first instance, but if they are unwell and cannot help you please click here to select the email address or telephone number to contact us and we will explain how we can help you.

I have recently applied for a lifetime mortgage from you but I would like to withdraw it – what can I do?
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We recommend you contact your adviser in the first instance, but if they are unwell and cannot help you please click here to select the email address or telephone number to contact us and we will explain how we can help you.

I'm in the process of applying for a lifetime mortgage but I'm worried about coronavirus and I don't want to meet with a solicitor face to face – what should I do?
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The Equity Release Council (the trade body who sets standards for the industry) has agreed a new way to make sure customers can still access quality, independent legal advice but without having to leave their homes.

The new approach involves a combination of written advice and documented video or telephone calls. It is a temporary measure for this period of lockdown and social distancing, and the Council will keep it under review.

Face-to-face and in-person legal advice is still the gold standard because it allows solicitors to ensure the customer can understand the terms and conditions of the equity release contract and be confident that no coercion is being applied to the customer. Please be aware that if you choose not to see a solicitor in person, and the solicitor is not satisfied that these requirements have been met, then your application may be paused until you are able to see a solicitor in person. You can find more information on the Equity Release Council’s website here.

I am in the process of applying for a lifetime mortgage with you but I'm worried about coronavirus and I don't want the valuer to visit my house in person – what can you do?
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We understand your concerns. We have agreed with our surveyors/valuers for them to provide a valuation without requiring access to the property if you do not want them to enter your home.  This allows customers to proceed with their lifetime mortgage application now. At a later date we will arrange a full valuation when access to the property is possible. Please let us know if you would like to make use of this facility so we can make sure our surveyors/valuers are aware.

I'm in the process of applying for a lifetime mortgage with you but I'm self-isolating or unwell and can't arrange for the documents to be witnessed – what should I do?
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Some documents must be witnessed before they become legally binding. This is to protect the borrower and the mortgage lender. We recommend you contact your adviser/broker in the first instance, but if they are unwell and cannot help you please click here to select the email address or telephone number to contact us and we will explain how we can help you.

You may have options available you haven’t considered such as asking a family member who is not named on the lifetime mortgage to witness the document.  You might like to consider showing the witness the document, and asking the witness to view you signing the document, through a closed window – then posting the document through the letterbox for them to witness and return to you.

We and other lifetime mortgage providers are working with the legal profession to identify how it could be possible to find alternative solutions to help customers.

My adviser says you may need a General Practitioner (“GP”) report in order to process my application – is that the case?
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Yes, that’s correct. During the height of the pandemic we temporarily altered our approach to avoid putting additional pressure on GPs. Most GPs are now able to supply GP reports as usual, but if a GP is still too busy we will ask customers to supply us with copies of their prescription or medical letters instead of a GP report; in these cases we may request a GP report later when that GP surgery has the capacity to respond to these requests.

We will keep these arrangements under review and update this area as the situation changes, so do check back from time to time.

If you do request and receive a GP report after the lifetime mortgage has commenced and find there is a difference in the information you received to make your underwriting decision what happens to the offer made to the customer?
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In most cases we find the differences in disclosure by the customer compared to the information provided in the GP report are not material and therefore the underwriting assessment and the offer made to the customer remains unchanged.  In a minority of cases where the difference is significant we may make a change to the underwriting assessment. We have the right under the contract to backdate any changes to the policy inception date but in practice we do not expect to effect this in practice.

General questions

Has your business been affected by coronavirus?
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It has been very much business as usual and we’ve remained fully open to support you. When lockdown began, we gave our colleagues the most up-to-date technology so they could continue to operate our core systems remotely and provide you with help.

Did you have plans in place in case your business was affected by coronavirus?
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Yes. Our major incident team is led by one of our Group Executive directors and has been in place since January. The team has been focused on protecting our colleagues at Just and, by protecting our colleagues, enabling Just to continue to deliver its key customer commitments and business services.

Are your staff able to work from home?
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The vast majority of our colleagues are equipped with secure IT systems for remote working. Our technology has worked well to support our colleagues in delivering our services from their homes. We routinely test our ability to cope with extreme scenarios which enables us to move quickly to support you at times like this.

When will your staff be returning to the office?
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We continue to monitor the situation and regularly review our plans as government guidelines are updated. For now, our colleagues are working well from home and ensuring we meet our key commitments and deliver business services to all our customers. So we don’t expect our colleagues to return to the office in the very near future.

 

Does the stock market volatility affect the stability of your business?
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The current outbreak of the coronavirus and the volatility in the financial markets does not impact our ability to honour our financial commitments to you.  At Just we set aside substantial prudent resources against economic shocks. Protecting the guarantees we have made to you, our customers, is and has always been our priority at Just.

How can policyholders be sure that they will continue to receive what you have promised them?
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The current outbreak of the coronavirus and the volatility in the financial markets does not impact our ability to honour our financial commitments to you. At Just we set aside substantial prudent resources against economic shocks. Protecting the guarantees we have made to you, our customers, is and has always been our priority at Just.

In addition to the substantial financial resources Just holds to back the promises we make to policyholders our surplus capital resources beyond that required to pay policyholders were around £750m at our last financial reporting date, 31 December 2019.

Our policyholders are also protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme. Policyholders who have long-term insurance products are covered 100% by the scheme with no upper cap.

Are you able to respond to customer queries?
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Yes. We remain fully open to help you in any way we can. 

Have you stopped any services?
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No. Currently, all our services are operating as normal.  We’ll use this area on the website to keep you updated of any changes. 

How can I keep up to date with your plans during the coronavirus epidemic?
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We’ll use this area on the website to keep you updated of any changes so please check back regularly. 

Where can I find further information about the Financial Services Compensation Scheme?
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You can find out more on their website: https://www.fscs.org.uk/

Where can I find further information about the government’s plans for managing coronavirus?
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The government website has further details on the government’s plan.