What is the Right way to Renew Health Insurance Policy?February 1, 2020
Health insurance policy offers coverage for medical expenses incurred by the insured member during a policy year. Depending on the type of health cover one opts for, the medical expenses can include hospitalisation costs, day-care procedures, domiciliary hospitalisation, pre and post-hospitalisation costs, etc. There are various add-ons or riders that can be attached to a standard health insurance policy to get well-rounded coverage.
Health insurance renewal
Like life insurance or car insurance, health insurance has to be renewed at the end of every policy year to enjoy continuous coverage. Health insurance can be purchased online through the insurer’s website or offline through an insurance agent. Similarly, health insurance renewal can be done online through the insurer’s website or offline at the nearest branch office of the insurance company.
Before purchasing a health insurance plan, it is important to compare various policies across the top insurance providers to choose the one that best serves your needs. You can compare health insurance policies online through a third-party website and get an instant quote on your chosen policy
3 things to consider at the time of health insurance renewal
Although health insurance renewal is a simple and easy process, especially when done online, there are few things to keep in mind before renewing the existing policy:
- Review the renewal terms: Policyholders will be sent a renewal reminder by the insurance company 45 days prior to the renewal date. The reminder email will contain policy details such as the sum assured, number and types of claims made, and no-claim bonus. Policyholders must be diligent and keep the insurance company informed if there is any discrepancy in the policy details specified in the reminder mail.
- Before renewing, check out other options: Porting a policy from one insurer to another is an option when the policyholder is dissatisfied with the existing insurer either due to higher premium costs and sub-limits or lower benefits. An advantage of health insurance portability is that the policyholder will not lose out on the policy benefits such as waiting period and No-Claim Bonus when transferring it from one insurer to the next.
- Assess insurance needs: With the steady rise in healthcare costs, an existing policy will not offer sufficient insurance coverage. That is why, it is necessary to assess present and future health insurance needs. Depending on the needs, choose a higher sum insured or add a rider to the standard base policy.
Tips to renew health insurance policy
Health insurance like two-wheeler insurance has to be renewed annually to keep the policy active and enjoy continuous coverage. Here are some tips to renew health insurance on time:
- Policy renewal before due date: When a policyholder fails to renew the policy on time, a 15 to 30-day grace period is provided to pay the premium dues. If the premium payment isn’t made within the grace period, then the policy lapses. Therefore, the policyholder has to remember to renew the policy on or before the due date. Health insurance premium can be higher than other insurance premiums. Therefore, like that of a personal loan EMI payment, put aside funds to make health insurance premium payment.
- Tax benefits: Health insurance like life insurance provides tax benefits as per the Income Tax Act, 1961. Enjoy tax deductions on premiums paid towards health insurance and critical illness riders. You can change the policyholder to get better tax benefits.
- Review insurance needs: It is important to review one’s insurance needs before renewing the existing policy. If a couple is planning to have a child, a maternity benefit plan can be added to the base policy can be added to the base policy at the time of renewal.
- Disclose new illnesses at the time of renewal: Be honest with the medical details furnished at the time of policy purchase and renewal to avoid any hassle when a claim has to be made in future.
- Choose higher sum insured: At the time of policy renewal, policyholders have the option to increase the sum insured. This requires medical tests and a revision of the claim history. Sum insured can’t be increased further if the existing sum has already met the sum insured limit of the policy. In such a case, the policyholder can opt for a Super Top-up Plan to get a higher sum insured.
- Read policy document carefully: Check the policy terms and conditions like claim guidelines, renewal clause, exclusions, etc.
Keep in mind these tips when you go for renewing your existing health insurance policy. The insurance company has the right to deny a policyholder’s health insurance renewal.