What is the treatment cost of Cancer and how to protect it Financially?

In 2015, about 90 million people had Cancer and 8.80 million deaths occurred due to this dreaded disease which is also the second leading cause of death globally. According to World Health Organization (WHO) nearly 10 Lakh new cases are reported every year in India. Unfortunately, nearly 5 Lakh people annually die in India due to cancer and this number will go up and projected to raise five folds by 2025, according to WHO.

During 2016, estimated 1.5 lakh new breast cancer cases have been registered (over 10 per cent of all cancers) in India. Breast Cancer is the number one Cancer followed by lungCancer with estimated 1.14 lakhs cases, according to a premier medical research organisation in India.Cervix is the third most common cancer in India with estimated 1 lakh new cases reported in 2016 according to The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR).

The alarming statistics above can make any one depressed and anxious but the fact is that Cancer is now a common disease globally and different types of cancer are being diagnosed every day.

costs

What is the treatment cost of Cancer?

The treatment of Cancer is spiralling with discovery of new drugs and technology. As you may know, in India, the cost is so high that it may wipe out the entire savings of the family and thus ruin the financial future of the family.

In a Cancer treatment, it is next to impossible to put up a cost rate because every cancer case is different.

Difference arise from the organ affected  ( Primary organ and secondary organs that cancer has metastated to ) Further, the mode of treatment and drugs usage changes as per stage of cancer. Hence, the closed estimate of treatment can be provided only after evaluation of your medical reports like CT scan,USG,Biopsy reports etc..

However, there is a way by which you can protect this – the answer is Cancer Protection Plan offered by life insurance companies. But before we discuss that, let us see some example of the tentative costs involved (it may vary from one institute to the other) in treatment of Cancer.

The cost of treating cancer may range from Rs 5 lakh to Rs 25 lakh approximately in six months’ time frame depending upon the stage of diagnosis. Also, people diagnosed with cancer may not be able to continue with their routine income-earning job which may result in loss of regular income.

  • Breast cancer surgery can cost Rs 3,00,000 to Rs. 5,00,000
  • Chemotherapy – The cost depends on the drug applied and the number of sessions. Approximate cost can vary between 50,000 – 100,000 for each session
  • Radiation – This therapy can cost Rs 150,000 – 250,000 per cycle
  • A PET-CT Scan can alone cost Rs 25,000 – 40,000

Source: For costing

Cost of Cancer Treatment in India for all major cancers

How to protect oneself from Cancer

If you have a regular health insurance plan or mediclaim insurance, it pays for the hospitalization cost upto the extent of the sum assured taken. Also, if you have taken a critical illness rider, the life insurance company pays the rider amount immediately on diagnosis of the disease without submission of any bill.

However, as you have seen, the cost of Cancer treatment is so high that, a regular health plan may not be enough to recover the entire treatment cost. Likewise, the coverage in a critical illness rider policy is limited and if you add that too, still it may not be sufficient to recover the entire treatment cost involved for the prolonged period.

The Best Health Insurance Plan for the Diabetic Patients

The answer lies in taking a cover exclusive to Cancer – The Cancer Protection Plan.

How the cancer Protection Plan works

Cancer Protection Plan is normally offered between age 18 to 65 years and it can be taken for 10, 15 or 20 years or 80 year minus age at entry. Sum assured taken can be from 10 Lakhs to maximum 40 Lakhs.

Cancer Protection Plan may come in many variant. For example – Lump sum cover and Lump sum cover with income benefit. In ‘Lump Sum Cover’ the fixed payout is made on diagnosis of cancer and in ‘Lump Sum Cover with Income Benefit’, one can receive a fixed percentage of the Cancer cover amount monthly for few years,over and above getting the lump sum amount on diagnosis of Cancer.

The other benefits of Cancer Protection Plan are that premium for these plans are generally low and in most cases medical examination is not required.

Our country continues to be one of the most under-penetrated in the world, as far as taking health protection plans are concerned. Not even 1% of the total population is insured for health coverage even though there has been a growing awareness of health insurance products. Since Cancer treatment is long-term in nature, it also translates into a recurring expenditure and loss of pay due to a prolong absence from work. This is the reason why one must have a Cancer Protection Plan exclusively over and above the regular health plan.

Even though Cancer is dreaded and the treatment can be prolonged, a Cancer Protection Plan can help not only fight with Cancer but also helps to protect your life’s savings.

 

 

 

(Insurance is the subject matter of the solicitation. For more details on the risk factors, term and conditions please read sales brochure of the respective companies carefully)

 

Source : Priyanka Chakrabarty

 

Why do I need a personal accident Insurance Policy?

These days due to increasing number of vehicles in the country, the number of accidents are happening. Life is capricious or uncertain. Anything can happen to anyone at any point in time. People purchase insurance to protect themselves financially against such unfortunate events. A good insurance portfolio ensures that all eventualities cover you or your finances. Life insurance proceeds will ensure that your family achieves the financial goals in your absence. A health insurance plan will provide quality health care for you and your family. Many people of us are inclined to feel that if we have adequate life, health or critical insurance, your finances are protected.

What about an accident or an illness that causes total or partial disability, which in turn compromises your ability to earn income at the level before the accident. Life insurance will typically not cover such a scenario. Health insurance covers only hospitalization expenses. You can see there is a gap, which is not covered. It is in such cases that a Personal Accident Cover can come in handy. Personal Accident Insurance plans offer limited coverage but are still better than nothing.Under your term cover, you might get the accident benefit rider on extra payment but it will mostly pay off in the cases of permanent total disability, thereby leaving all other temporary and partial disabilities. 

accidentAccidents are categorized as one of fatal health hazards worldwide. When this health hazard is put into the frame of a country where one person dies by accident every four-minute, it does require our attention. According to World Health Organization (WHO) report, about 12.5 crore people die every year due to accidents and between 200-500 crore sustain injuries.

A personal accident policy covers death, permanent total disability, permanent partial disability and total temporary disability due to an accident. First of all, these events have to happen in an accident. If the insured person dies or gets totally or partially disabled through a natural illness, such disability (or death) will not be covered under a personal accident policy.

If one day on your way back home you meet with an accident which may leave you paralyzed for life? It is scary. But, this can happen and might leave a long-lasting impact on your life. With lives lost daily and injuries rising rapidly due to accidents, we come across many cases of permanent total or permanent partial disability. A personal accident cover helps in such a scenario by providing coverage for disability, which is not typically covered under either life or health insurance.

personalWhat if you fall victim to temporary total disablement, how would you meet the income/Job loss caused by it. In such a case, your personal accident cover comes handy with income coverage part. This means, if for some time you are completely bedridden due to injury, you will be paid a certain percentage of your sum assured weekly to compensate the income/Job loss scenario.

When you are young, your chances of meeting with an accident are higher. According to WHO report, people aged between 15 and 44 years account for 48% of global road-traffic deaths; If this is just the data for deaths, imagine the rate of disability prone youth. Hence, it is always advisable to opt for a personal accident cover when you first start earning. The plan provides a considerable protection for a very low premium. While you get 100% payout in case of permanent total disability, in partial disability you get paid depending on the extent of the loss. For example; for the loss of an eye, the policy will pay 50% of the total coverage, for the loss of a leg it will typically pay 50-70% of the total coverage.

Say a strict no to Guaranteed Life Insurance Plans

Regardless of the fact whether you got hit by a two-wheeler or a four-wheeler, your personal accident insurance will cover even minor things like falling off a bike, among others. Not only this, even small injuries like broken bones, fractures, cuts, burns, etc. which do not require hospitalization, get covered under a personal accident cover.

The rule of thumb says you should go for a cover that is eight to ten times your annual income. The personal, emotional or mental trauma triggered by accident often leaves a permanent scar on life. Therefore, having a personal accident insurance can decrease that stress and can make your life a little less stressful. It can brace you from the financial hardships.

plan

The premiums for an accident cover are abysmally low. For a sum assured of Rs 5 lakh, your premiums can be as small as Rs. 600/- p.a. for death, total and partial disability coverage. This is probably equivalent to what you may pay for a meal for two when buying a food delivery app. However, we suggest that you should always buy a cover, which is at least ten times your annual salary. This is because your accident cover acts as your income in the event of death or disability. The product currently is an evolving one, and most insurers provide a protection of up to Rs 30 lakh online. The higher sum assured can be brought offline only.

HOW CAN YOU SETTLE YOUR INSURANCE CLAIM IF REJECTED?

Personal accident cover is required only to take care of permanent disability (total or partial). Your life insurance, health insurance, and emergency corpus should take care of accidental death, accident-related hospitalization and temporary loss of income.

Permanent disability, total or partial, can compromise your earning ability. In fact, it can even add to your expenses. You may require domiciliary treatment (treatment at home), physiotherapy sessions or nurse support. No health insurance coverage will cover such costs beyond a point.

LIC CANCER COVER PLAN – REVIEW

LIC had launched its second health insurance related plan which is named as LIC Cancer Cover (Plan-905) on 14th November 2017. LIC’s Cancer Cover is a regular premium payment health insurance plan which provides financial protection in case the Life Assured is diagnosed with any of the stages of Cancer during the policy term. This plan covers both the early stage cancer and significant stage cancer.

It is an online health insurance plan which has low premiums, and it comes with some benefits and add-on features.

LIC CANCER PLANFeatures-

It comes with numerable benefits like lump sum benefit, premium waiver benefit, income benefit which would be paid till ten years every month, and many more.

  • This plan has one month grace period.
  • Loan facility is not available in this policy as the policy will not acquire any paid-up value or surrender value.
  • The term period of policy is 10-30 years.
  • Tax rebate available under Income Tax under section 80D for premium amount paid.
  • It comes with two sum assured plans, i.e., Level 1 and Level 2.
  • This policy is non-linked and regular premium paying health insurance plan.
  • Basic sum assured is between Rs 10 Lakhs to Rs 50 Lakhs.
  • Free look period of 15 days if the policyholder is not satisfied with terms and conditions of the policy.
  • The policy will lapse if premium not paid within the grace period, though it can be revived but within two years of first unpaid premium.
  • The policy can be bought through online on LIC website.
  • No third party agencies are involved in this policy.
  • Nominations are available in this plan.
  • Policy can be assigned under as per Sec 38 of Insurance Act 1983.

Say a strict no to Guaranteed Life Insurance Plans

Sum Assured Options-

  • Level Sum Insured

The basic sum insured will remain the same throughout the policy term period.

  • Increasing Sum Insured

The sum insured increases by 10% of basic sum insured each year for first five years starting from the first policy anniversary or until the diagnosis of  first event of cancer, whichever is earlier. On diagnosis of any specified cancer as mentioned above, all the claims will be based on the increased sum insured at the policy anniversary coinciding or prior to the diagnosis of the first claim and further increases to this sum insured will not be applicable.

Benefits-

  • Lump sum Benefit-
  1. Early stage cancer In this stage, the early stage cancer is diagnosed, 25% of sun insured would be paid immediately to be insured.
  2. Major stage cancer in this stage of cancer, 100% sum insured would be paid on being diagnosed.
  • Premium Waiver Benefit-
  1. Early stage cancer In this stage of cancer, first three years premium would be waived and later the premium payment to be continued.
  2. Major stage cancer In this stage, all future premium payments would be waived off.
  • Income Benefit-
  1. Early stage cancer benefit is not available.
  2. Major stage cancer In this stage, 1% of basic sum insured would be paid every policy month for ten years irrespective of the policy term, i.e., even if policy tenure is over, this benefit amount has been paid.

LIC Jeevan Shikhar Plan : Tax Saver or Loser

  • Tax Benefit-

Tax benefits are available under section 80D of medical insurance but not under 80C as this is health insurance plan and not life insurance plan.

  • No Maturity and Death Benefit is available in this plan.

Eligibility Criteria for this plan-

LIC TABLEPremiums Payable under this plan-

For 20 years of term period and sum insured of Rs. 10 lakhs would have premiums accordingly:

  • Male whose age is 30 years For level 1 premium is Rs. 1,404 and for level 2 premiums is Rs. 1,841.
  • Male whose age is 40 years For level 1 premium is Rs. 3,044 and for level 2 premium is Rs. 4,224.
  • Male whose age is 50 years For level 1 premium is Rs. 9,936 and for level 2 premium is Rs. 14,101.
  • Female whose age is 30 years For level 1 premium is Rs. 2,856 and for level 2 premium is 3,953.
  • Female whose age is 40 years For level 1 premium is Rs. 5,546 and for level 2 premium is 7,753.
  • Female whose age is 50 years For level 1 premium is Rs. 9,900 and for level 2 premium is Rs. 13,476.

Waiting periods in this plan-

A waiting period of 6 months will be applied from the date of issuance of policy or date of revival of risk cover whichever is later, to the first diagnosis of any stage of cancer.

What are the Reasons Behind Most Women not Having a Health Insurance Cover?

Exclusions-

  • Any Pre-Existing Condition.
  • If the diagnosis of a Cancer was made within 180 days from the Date of issuance of policy or date of revival of risk cover whichever is later.
  • For any medical conditions suffered by the life assured or any medical procedure undergone by the life assured if that medical condition or that medical procedure was caused directly or indirectly by Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS), AIDS-related complex or infection by Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV).
  • For any medical condition or any medical procedure arising from the donation of any of the Life Assured organs.
  • For any medical conditions suffered by the Life Assured or any medical procedure undergone by the Life Assured, if that medical condition or that medical procedure was caused directly or indirectly by alcohol or drug (except under the direction of a registered medical practitioner).
  • For any medical condition or any medical procedure arising from nuclear contamination; the radioactive, explosive or hazardous nature of nuclear fuel materials or property contaminated by nuclear fuel materials or accident arising from such nature.

 

DISCLAIMER

All matter published here is purely for educational and information purposes only and under no circumstances should be used for making investment decisions. Readers must consult a qualified financial advisor before making any actual investment decisions, based on information published here.

HOW CAN YOU SETTLE YOUR INSURANCE CLAIM IF REJECTED?

Reason behind the rejection of claim

  • Lack of information on the proposal forms

The life insurance customers always make a common mistake that they hire the agents to fill the form on their behalf just because they find the form filling process very time to consume and complicated.

These agents may sometimes fill incorrect or incomplete information which will cause the rejection of your form. So, always fill your form yourself and recheck it after completing.

  • Not revealing (hiding) personal information

The personal information like age, occupation, family history, smoking habits, pre-existing diseases, alcohol consumption, details of other policy you are holding, etc. is vital to fill in the form for the insurance claim, which is used by the insurers to fix the premium. And if there is any mistake or conceal in this information, your form may get rejected.

claim

  • Pre-existing Diseases

If you have any of the pre-existing diseases and you claim for the insurance but do not reveal the fact of your disease in the form. In this case, your claim would get rejected as because it is essential to disclose certain facts in the form.

  • Settle the claims before the policy gets expired

It is essential to pay the premium on time so that your policy would be active. And if you fail to pay the premium, your policy will get expired and your claim would get rejected. So, to avoid the policy lapse, do not miss paying premiums on time.

Ways to settle your claim

 Go to the insurance company to resolve the claim

You can go and meet the Grievance Redressal Officer (GRO) of the insurance company and give him/her the complaint in written along with the required documents. And do not forget to take a written acceptance of the complaint with the date. Your complaint should get settled by the insurance company within 15 days from the filing of the complaint. And if the insurance company or the insurer fails to settle the issue within the mentioned time, you can approach the IRDA (Insurance Regulatory & Development Authority of India) Within the period of 1 year from the complaint filing date.

  • Register your complaint to IRDA

You can register your complaint via email to the IRDA ([email protected]) or you can mail or post your complaints to IRDA head office in Hyderabad. To register the complaint to IRDA, you should clearly specify the insurance holder’s name and address along with the name of the branch or office of the insurer against whom you have to file the complaint. And you have to state all the facts which give rise to register you a complaint. Also, required documents must be attached to the complaint. The nature and extent of the loss caused to the complainant and the relief requested from the Insurance Ombudsman (an official appointed to investigate individuals).

Say a strict no to Guaranteed Life Insurance Plans

The Ombudsman gives his advice or suggestion within one month if parties agree to conciliation; otherwise, an award is passed within three months from the date of receipt of all requirements from a complainant. Then the insurance company has only 30 days to observe the suggestions given by the Ombudsman. And if the complainant is not satisfied with the results, then he/she can go to the consumer forum.

  • IGMS (Integrated Grievance Management System)

Besides all the above solutions, the IRDA has a new system to resolve the issues of the policyholders and stated it as IGMS. The system can be used by the policyholders to register and track their complaint with both the insurer and the IRDA. You just have to follow these simple steps:

  • Go to the IGMS website (igms.irds.gov.in) and create a profile on the name of the policyholder for further registration of complaint.
  • Fill up the asked details about your issue with the insurer.

Then you will receive an email along with IRDA token number which will be used by the IRDA and the Insurance Company to track the complaint. After the confirmation of the process from you, the complaint would go to the insurer’s system as well as the IRDA repository.

After the insurer makes the resolution, if you are not satisfied with that, then your complaint would be sent to the IRDA for a review for a potential violation of Regulations through IGMS.

After this act, there may be a surety for the complete satisfaction from your side and may be all your grievances would get solved.

Say a strict no to Guaranteed Life Insurance Plans

Guaranteed Life insurance plans are the basic product offered by almost all insurance companies. These plans attract a wide customer base especially during the last few months of the tax saving season. Also, in a state of falling interest rates, such guarantees attract those individuals who want life insurance for availing tax benefits.

In these plans, Insurers declare a ‘guaranteed addition’ (GA) or ‘guaranteed return’ instead of bonus which varies depending upon the profits made by the insurer. Apparently, such plans appear attractive with lots of guarantees thrown in at different stages of the policy. All in all, the maturity amount is guaranteed and so are the monthly payouts.

Such plans may come up with the offers of guaranteed addition of 7-9 per cent of premium per annum or guaranteed payouts of 126-138 percent of the annual premium each year.

INSURANCE PLAN

The gap between guaranteed and actual returns

The guaranteed addition is not equivalent to the actual annualized returns. These guaranteed benefits accrue only on maturity and hence the actual return will vary from the one which is guaranteed to the customer. Guarantee always comes at a cost, therefore, the returns, after adjusting for the costs because of the guarantee, are low in such plans.

Although actual returns would depend on one’s age, term and premium amount, the average IRR (internal rate of return) in most traditional plans, including money-back, endowments, lie between 2 to 6 per cent per annum. The plans with guarantees would carry even lower returns.

PLAN

An illustration

Let’s assume that there’s a guaranteed plan for a 10-year term, but with a premium paying eight-year term. The plan offers guaranteed payout of 150 percent of premium every year after maturity of 8 years.

It means that the premium is to be paid for 8 years, but life cover will run for 10 years. After maturity, payouts will happen for the next 8 years. Illustratively, if the premium is Rs 20,000, it has to be paid for the initial 8 years. Thereafter, from 10th till the 17th year, there will be an annual payout of Rs 30,000. The IRR in the above plan comes to 2.9 per cent per annum!

Types of guarantees

The structure of the guaranteed plans is not the same across insurers.

  • Insurers may offer a guaranteed return based either on the premium or on the sum assured.
  • The guarantee may also differ based on the term of the policy or even the premium paying term.
  • In some plans, the guaranteed returns get added to the policy from the second year onwards, while in some, it may start at a later date.
  • Some of these plans are similar to money-back plans wherein there is a regular flow of income at regular intervals, while in some, there could be a lump sum payment on maturity.
  • Further, in a few of them, payouts happen after maturity for a certain number of years.

LIC Jeevan Shikhar Plan : Tax Saver or Loser

Guaranteed traditional plans gets complex

The offering could be anything, but hidden beneath the complex workings of insurance plans is the payout structure. There has been a vast change in the traditional life insurance which earlier represented the endowment and money back kind of policies. The terms and conditions of the payout are so complicated that understanding it may not be an easy task for many.

The premium, for a specific age and sum assured (SA), is paid for a limited period (say, 5 years) while the term of the plan is 15 years. Based on these parameters, the insurer will calculate a guaranteed maturity value and depending on that, will start paying a certain percentage of it as guaranteed cash amount starting the non-premium payment period (from the 6th year) till the end of the term.

Similarly, there could be a guaranteed plan in which every 5th year, 125 per cent of the premium is paid out, while the GA is added to policy each year, to be had on maturity along with SA (less amount paid every fifth year). In few other guarantee plans, the payout could be entirely on maturity, including GA and SA.

Contrary to the past when these policies were simple and straightforward, the newer versions are very complicated to understand. With guarantees thrown in, such plans may appear attractive, but the actual return in them is around 4 per cent per annum, or even lower.

Tip for insurance buyers:

One must not buy a life insurance for the purpose of saving tax. Traditional plans are inflexible and lock in funds for 15-30 years with a return of 2 to 5 per cent. so people must avoid buying traditional insurance plans, with or without inbuilt guarantees. Rather they should get a pure term insurance plan and park their savings in Public Provident Fund (PPF) or Equity Linked Savings Scheme (ELSS) for meeting long-term goals, while keeping the tax the tax liability at bay.

The Best Health Insurance Plan for the Diabetic Patients

In India, diabetes is one of the major health issues. Every 1 person out of 5 is suffering from diabetes. And this number is increasing day-by-day. The number of diabetic patients in year 1980 was 108 million and this number goes up to 422 million in the year 2014. It is being predicted that diabetes will become the 7th leading cause of death on a global level till the year 2030.

So, in the case of any emergency related to diabetes, health insurance will take care of you and your family after you. There are various health insurance plans for diabetic patients, so you need to select best out of it.

Unknown facts about Diabetes in India

  • There were approx 69.1 million cases of diabetes in India in the year 2015.
  • It has been predicted that, every 5th diabetic patient in the world will be an Indian by year 2025.
  • Our India is popular as the diabetic capital of the world having a 2nd position in the number of diabetic patients worldwide.
  • The number of death from diabetes in the year 2012 was 1 million.
  • In India, 87 million cases of diabetes by the year 2030 are being predicted by World Health Organization.
  • According to research, 1 out of 5 corporate workers suffers from diabetes or hypertension.
  • In India, a number of male diabetic patients is 13% higher that of the female.
  • The risk of contracting diabetes is 50% more for the people between ages of 60-70 years.

Age-wise Claim for DiabetesAge wiseState-wise Claim for DiabetesState wiseAfter a look at all these charts, you can see how this issue of diabetes is capturing the whole India. Now, it becomes must buy a health insurance plan for diabetic patients.

There are many companies in India which cover diabetes as a pre-existing disease in their health insurance policy which also includes specific health issues arising due to diabetes. But, maximum people are not aware of these policies.

Critical Illness treatments now in Installment/EMI form will be a mode of relief

Types of Diabetes and their policies

 1st Type– It is the type of diabetes in which the body stops producing insulin, which is very much needed to convert glucose into energy, and is known as insulin-dependent diabetes. In this type, the patient needs regular shots of insulin.

There is no policy which covers this type of diabetes.

  • 2nd Type In this type of diabetes the level of sugar (glucose) in the body goes higher than the normal and the cells of our body becomes insulin resistance and the amount of insulin produced is not sufficient.

Policies covering this type– Star Health Diabetes Safe, National Insurance Varishta Mediclaim, Energy Plan by Apollo Munich Health Insurance Plan.

  • 3rd Type– it is the type of diabetes in which opposition of insulin occurs in the brain and it is the type of Alzheimer disease.

Gestational diabetes

This occurs in a female at the time of pregnancy and if not cured, it gets converted to the type 2 diabetes.

Policies covering this type– Maternity benefit of health insurance policy cover this type of diabetes.

Premium amount for Diabetes health insurance plans

The premium amount for a diabetic patient is mostly higher than the normal premium amount because the risk is also high. The diabetic patient gets a higher chance of claim due to the frequent medical attention. So, always go for that policy which gives you maximum benefit at minimum cost.

Minimum premium amount of different policies (A person of 45 years of age and cover of 3 lakhs)Name of the policy newWaiting Period of the Plans

Each and every health insurance policy has its waiting period for which you can claim for your pre-existing disease. Waiting period varies from company to company, but mostly it is of 4 years. You should go for the policy with a minimum waiting period.

Protect a Lady by Gifting Health protection

Sum assured

Your conclusion to the sum assured should be based on your diabetes condition age, city, hospitalization requirement and the inflation rate of health care. Choose the best which offers you a wide range of sum assured.

Age & Cover for the disease arising due to Diabetes

Always inspect before your buy. Check the age limit of your health insurance policy. It should be flexible because flexibility in the age limit will allow you to get insured at advanced age also. It will also cover problems arising in other body parts due to diabetes.

Points to be remembered

Always try to buy health insurance as early as possible, especially when you have the medical history of diabetes.

  • Always get a specialized and specific plan which covers you from the inception of the policy.
  • Terms and conditions related to the policy are very important to understand.
  • In India, the number of insurance companies covering diabetes is very less but there are sufficient plans to choose the best one. Think, understand, insure, and then buy.

Recent Claim Settlement Ratio issued by IRDA : Top Leading Insurance Companies In 2017

According to the data of claim settlement ratio, we’ll be able to finalize the best insurance companies for the coming year 2017.

  1. Claim Settlement Ratio
  2. Average Claim Settlement Amount
  3. Average Claim Rejection Amount of Life Insurers in 2015-16
  4. Claim Pending Status of Life Insurance Companies in 2015-16
  5. Top Life Insurance Companies in 2017
  6. Few points to be considered before selecting Life Insurance Companies.

1. Claim Settlement Ratio

It works as an indicator for the life insurance companies which tell them how much death claims have been settled in the particular financial year.

You can calculate it by dividing total number of claims received by total number of claims settled.

However, this claim settlement ratio is the raw data. But we can assume that how many death claim deals are made by the life insurance companies.

IRDA Claim Settlement Ratio 2015-16

The given chart shows the Claim Settlement Ratio of 2015-16 i.e. up to March 31, 2016.

In the chart, life insurance companies are differentiated by the colour code.

90%-100% are indicated by blue colour.

80%-89% are indicated by red colour.

70%-79% are indicated by green colour.

And lastly, 60%-69% are indicated by purple colour.

CLAIM SETTELEMENTAs per the given chart, there are 24 life insurance companies and 12 companies are above 90% in claim settlement ratio. And LIC comes first in the rank by providing 98% in the list.

Let us see the claim amount settled by each company to serve their best:

Reliance life comes with the great increase in the claim settle ratio as compared to that of previous one. The previous data shows it as 84% but this year it goes up to 94%.

Birla Sunlife had a drop this year. The previous data shows that its settlement ratio was 95%. But this year it decreased to 85%.

Star Union is also facing loss this year. As per previous data its settlement ratio was 94% but this year it falls to 81%.

PNB Met Life dropped down from 93% to 85% this year.

Edelweiss Tokio has done a massive increase in their settlement ratio this year. Previously it was 60% and it came up to 85%.

IDBI Federal Life had a change of 9%. It rises up from 76% to 85%.

DHFL Pramerica had a huge increase of claim settlement ratio this year from 57% to 84%.

Aegon Religare Life has a slight increase in settlement ratio. It rose from 90% to 95%.   

As we can see above, most of the new companies are moving their position towards the highest peak. Very few of them dropped from higher position. So, how could to decide which life insurance will give highest claim settlement ratio in the coming future. It might be very difficult for you.

2. Average Claim Settlement Amount

As the claim settlement ratio doesn’t give us the transparency of the type of products the insurance companies settle. So, this average claim ratio will clear our doubts.

IRDA CLAIM SETTELMENT

Here we can see that LIC which was leading in claim settlement ratio is standing in the lowest position in average claim amount settled by insurance companies along with Exide, Sahara, Reliance Life, and Future Genereli (mentioned in the graph by green colour).

The graph shows that even though LIC had settled highest number of claims but maximum the claims are below Rs 200,000 which unveils that the LIC claim settlement is mostly in the group of Endowment Plans but not Term Insurance.

3. Average Claim Rejection Amount of Life Insurers in 2015-16

If we study about the Claim Settlement Ratio 2015-16 in depth, we can analyze how many claims the insurance companies had rejected.

AVG CLAIM

The graph shows that LIC is in the second position in claim rejection amount just after Sahara. LIC’s claim rejection is less because the quantum of claims it handles is high but value is less.

4. Claim Pending Status of Life Insurance Companies in 2015-16

The fast growing settlement of claims in the life insurance companies is the topic of consternation for all of us.

CLAIMAs in the graph we can see that, Kotak Life, Reliance Life, SBI Life, Shriram and LIC are leading in pending cases which are more than a year. We don’t know the reason but it may be fault of insured or the insurer.

5. Top Life Insurance Companies in 2017

According to the Claim Settlement Ratio 2015-16 issued by IRDA I got these selected life insurance companies. But your idea may differ that of mine. My choices are:

ICICI, HDFC, Aviva etc..

6. Few points to be considered before selecting Life Insurance Companies

  • Claim Settlement Ratio is a Primary/Raw data.

It means that it will not provide you with the transparency of data i.e. data will not be clear or up to the mark.

So, never depend on only this much data while choosing your life insurance company.

  • Focus on product, not on company

Go for the product will is as per your requirement and premium cost which you can afford. Do not conceal any fact and material.

  • Section 45 of Insurance Act will help you

According to Section 45 of Insurance Act “No policy of life insurance shall be called in question on any ground after the expiry of 3 years from the date of the policy, i.e. from the date of issuance of the policy or the date of commencement of risk or the date of revival of the policy or the date of the rider to the policy, whichever is later”.

  • Reveal all facts perfectly

When you decide to buy certain life insurance products, you have to fill a proposal form on your own. Do not ask or allow anybody else to fill it. And open up all the facts properly which will help you anyway. And will not give any chance for the insurers to reject your claim.

A WAY OF SUCCESS FULL FINANCIAL PLANNING

My years of practice as a financial planner, I met several successful from common person to  CEO’s MD’s  of the company’s business men ,respected intellectuals  in their fields earned millions of rupees but paid little attention to their financial planning. While analyzing their investment portfolio I observed some common mistakes people often commit. Some of the commonly committing mistakes I have narrated it below. If avoid these mistakes even a common person can make his financial planning successful to the large extent.

1. Setting financial targets

2. Importance of liquidity

3. Over exposure to either fixed income  or equities

4. Treating life insurance as an investment tool

5. Inadequate amount of health insurance coverage

6. Over weight to previous performers/ track record of the scheme

7. Exersing the option of selling

Setting financial targets :-

It is a first & most important step. It should be more realistic than dramatize. We need to consider many major & minute issues such as monthly income, monthly & annual fixed expenses, age, responsibilities, current life style & aspiration of post retirement life style, all such issues should co relate with present inflection & adoptive of future inflection also.

So for the better planning & implementation purpose target should divide in three phases that is short term, medium & long term goals. Periodical review & changes in goals after accomplishing the first is a better option & for these reasons policies have to be flexible & accommodative.

Importance of liquidity :-

Human life is full of surprises. How so ever people try to make full proof plan, destiny always has an upper hand & prepared to surprise us. To cope up with those surprises only available option with us is through contingencies plan by maintaining sufficient cash reserve or liquidity. I have seen people with good monthly income facing difficulties in just couple of months when they lose their jobs. Thanks to poor financial planning & thanks to credit cards as well which tempt people to reckless shopping.

Financial planning

Over exposure to either fixed income  or equities :-

It has been observed that people are either over cautious & skeptical or over aggressive in investment. Both things are not good. With over cautious approach people prefer fixed income options where return on investments are low. While second strategy of over aggressive in equity we carry excessive amount of risk which is just uncalled for. Instead of it there should be balanced approach. Decision about equity & fixed income investment depends upon many things i.e. age, income, financial targets, responsibility, risk appetite capacity etc.

Treating life insurance as an investment tool :-

Why people are so fond of insurance policies is a million dollar question now a days. Without accessing an amount of coverage required, without getting in to the schemes details people purchases those randomly purely as an instrument for the purpose of tax saving. But we forget the basis difference in two concepts i.e. purpose of investment is creation of wealth where as life insurance purpose is financial compensation from the life threats. Over exposure to any type of insurance policies are likely to the overspending on it than to receive from it.

Inadequate amount of Health insurance coverage:-

Similar to life insurance people in general are least informed about their health insurance policies. The way medical treatments cost is souring up in its proportionate amount of coverage should also needs to increase besides the age, medical history, hereditary, etc. but unfortunately neither at the time of investment nor at the time of its renewal we considers all these issues. As well as another blunder mistake in health insurance is family floater. If any one insured family member required expensive medical treatment then in that case other family members remains unprotected till the next policy renewal.  Option of Add on shopping is not supposed to apply in all areas & at least not in finance / insurance.  So better to have separate health insurance coverage for every family person.

Over weight to previous performers/ track record of the scheme: –

The concept is more related with market related investment instruments. Market dynamics because of industrial cycle, govt. Rules & policies, tax policies can affect or change the scheme/stocks future performance. So these things should also be considered while observing past performance. After all it does not give guaranty of future performance, so shall not over emphasis on past performance.

Exersing the option of selling :-

As the entry or purchase decision is important, selling of stock / units ( in case of mutual fund investment)  are equally important. Any market related investment be it equity or mutual fund, to book the profit / exit from the scheme or stock is equally important. In its absence that profit remains only on the paper. It is observed that people once invest in any stock or scheme remains invested, without keeping track record of their investment.

 

Critical Illness treatments now in Installment/EMI form will be a mode of relief

Over the last decade, the cost of medical treatment has grown at a rate of 10 percent.

Let us first understand the kind of critical illnesses that are covered by various insurance companies which are cancer, end stage renal failure, multiple sclerosis, benign brain tumour, motor neuron disorder, end stage lung disease, major organ transplant and heart valve replacement.

As per a WHO report published in 2014, heart disease was the biggest killer of people around the globe and in India too, where it killed more than 12 lakh people. It was followed by Lung Disease and Stroke which killed 1,061,863 and 881,702 people, respectively.

Cancer too is quickly emerging as a major cause of death among Indians with 548,015 cancer deaths reported in 2014. Among the different types of cancers, Oral Cancer is the biggest threat, followed by Breast Cancer. Diabetes, Liver diseases, and Kidney diseases also took more than 6 lakh lives in the India in 2014.

The below diagram states the estimated deaths per 1 lac people in the world according to World Health Organization :

Critical illness

This diseases are mainly caused due to the changing work patterns, long working hours, high-stressed jobs, junk food, smoking and alcohol, little or no exercise leading towards the so-called lifestyle diseases. The traditional health policies pay for hospitalization and domiciliary expenses and certain critical illness policies provide coverage to only a few critical illnesses. Therefore this leads to less adoption and ignorance towards opting for such health insurance policies.

The differences between a regular Health Insurance policy and Critical Illness policy offered by Insurance Companies are as below:

Differencr between Health insurance and critical illness

As per IRDA (Insurance Regulatory & Development Authority), India still continues to have the highest levels of under-penetration of health insurance and med claim in the world, with only 0.16% of the total population insured for health. Little wonder then that 70% of healthcare expenses are met from one’s pocket. This healthcare expenses cause greater financial burden on the family, more chances which lead deaths due to untimely treatments, high stress levels on the family members, etc.

The below diagram shows the approximate cost of medical treatments of the critical illness diseases :

Rising cost of medical Treatments

Therefore, such higher cost of treatments can be relaxed by designing products which can offer Installment/EMI option facility which are tied up with the hospital & insurance companies. The way the installment can be routed is through a credit card in which an empaneled list of hospitals is provided to the credit card holder. The patient has to inform the Center for the drug or medical service to be undergone and its confirmation for opting EMI facility thereby to finance the necessary formalities.

The advantages of such plans provided by hospitals & Banks will hence lead to deferred financial burden, more effective treatments with no waiting period leading to savior of deaths, assigned payment period from (3– 60) months period based on the financial profile and the debt paying capacity of the borrower, no lump sum cost to bear, inducting knowledge towards adopting health insurance policies at earlier age etc.

Thus in my opinion, a country where poor and low income groups still qualifies for more than 80% of the population in the vast majority of India’s 1.2billion citizens such medical plans will add to the convenience, savior to life and a mode of relief to such income groups.

LIC Jeevan Labh Plan : Reviews/Features/Return Sheet

The expected returns are in between 5.6% to 6.8%.

Similar to the earlier post regarding ‘LIC Jeevan Shikhar”, this plan i.e., LIC Jeevan Labh Plan also has a similar kind of offering.

LIC Jeevan Labh is a limited premium, non-linked with profit endowment insurance plan which was launched on 4th January, 2016 for the sole purpose of attracting individuals who want to avail taxation benefits. The plan is suited to those who want premium commitment for short duration having life coverage and benefits for a longer period.

The limited feature in this plan lets you chose among the three variants of policy terms (duration) i.e., 16,21 & 25 years and premium paying years are 10,15 & 16 respectively.

Features & Benefits:

Minimum Entry Age: 8 years

Maximum Entry Age: 59 years

Minimum Sum Assured: Rs.2,00,000

Maximum Sum Assured: No LIMIT

Policy Term & Premium Payment Term(years) : 16 (10years), 21(15years) & 25(16years)

Maximum age at Maturity : 59/54/50 years

Payment option Facility :3/6/12 months

Additional Premium Benefit : Optional Rider as Accidental Death & Disability Benefit

Term Insurance Rider Benefit : Increases the Death Benefit with sum assured

Loan Facility – Duration 3 years

Surrender Benefit – Post 3 Years of premium

Though the tenure is 16,21 & 25 years you need to pay premiums only for specific period

Maturity Benefit : Sum Assured + Bonus + Final Addition Bonus

Death Benefit : Sum Assured + Bonus + Final Addition Bonus Sum Assured (Not less than 105% of total premium paid as on date of the death occurred)

Commencement of Risk : Immediate

Fixed Premium Deduction every year

Grace Period : 1 month

Bonus Rates (per Rs.1000 Sum Assured) of LIC Endowment Plans are in the below range:

• <11 years - Rs34 • 11years-15years – Rs.38 • 16years-20years – Rs. 42 • >20 years – Rs.48

LIC Terminal Bonus Rates:

LIC JEEVAN LABH TABLE

Source : LIC Website

Illustration:

If a 35 year old individual opts for a sum assured value of Rs.2 lacs for term 21 years for a premium paying term of 15 years then after completion of 22nd year he would receive maturity benefit of Rs.4.21 lacs(Inclusive Sum Assured + Accrued Bonuses + Final Addition Bonus.

The expected returns are in between 5.6% to 6.8%.

Higher the Age — Higher Premium — Lower Returns

Lower the Age — Lower Premium — Higher Returns

LIC JEEVAN LABH RETURN

The main intension to buy Endowment plans is avail the money back option, risk aversion & insurance plus investment benefits. The combination of Insurance + Investment is not a good option to invest as you get minimum Insurance coverage & minimum return on Investments. Therefore before buying any endowment product, check for two most important things, insurance coverage on which all diseases & return on investment.

Hence, buying LIC Jeevan Labh Plan is not a right decision for people looking for more than 10% returns p.a on their investment, over a lock in period of more than 10 years.