Most people taking on mortgages are ignorant about the limited level of state benefits they would receive if they lost their job.

Fewer than a quarter of mortgage holders quizzed by the Association of British Insurers (ABI) about payment protection insurance appreciated what would happen if they became unemployed.

The research looked at consumer attitudes to, and awareness of, all types of creditor insurance, particularly mortgage payment protection insurance (MPPI).

One in five of those questioned believed the government would give them financial assistance with their mortgage if they were unable to work.

Around a third of those without MPPI said they would rely on savings and investments to pay regular bills if they were out of work.

Many MPPI policyholders said they had little idea about the specifics of their cover, showing a need for better information during and after the sales process.

But those who had made a claim on a payment protection policy were very satisfied with both the payout and the process of claiming. Almost three-quarters of people who had received claims payments felt it had been easy.