In terms of annualized premiums, critical illness insurance sales slid by 1 per cent in the third quarter of 2021 versus Q3 2020, according to LIMRA's Canadian Individual Critical Illness Sales Survey. Sales were $31.2 million in the third quarter of 2021.

By comparison, the number of policies sold increased by 2 percent in the third quarter of 2021 compared with the third quarter of 2020. In Q3 2021, 84,122 policies were sold.

LIMRA research analyst Matthew Rubino notes that seven of the 15 participating companies reported a decline in their CI insurance premiums, and that permanent products were the only products whose premiums declined versus the same
period last year.

At the end of the first nine months of 2021, critical illness insurance premiums totalled $95.8 million. Limited period level CI sales accounted for 51 per cent of this total. Permanent insurance made up 28 per cent and renewable CI 21 per cent. 

For the same nine-month period in 2021, 84,122 critical illness policies were sold. Renewable policies garnered 43 per cent of total sales. Sales of limited period level policies accounted for 42 per cent and permanent policies 15 per cent. 

Rubino comments that independent distributors saw a 1 per cent increase in premiums over last year. Affiliated distributors sustained a 5 per cent decrease in premiums. The independent distributor category includes independent advisors, MGAs and national accounts. The affiliated distributor category includes exclusive life and health insurance (career) agents and exclusive agents of companies that sell both property and casualty insurance (known as multiple-line exclusive agentsor MLEA).

For the first nine months of 2021, CI insurance in-force premiums were $1.2 billion. Limited period level insurance represents nearly half of this total, at $548.2 million.

Of the 1,134,175 policies in force at the end of the first nine months of 2021, 493,381 were limited period level policies.