In today’s hectic world the lifestyle of people has changed drastically. People today have stressful and competitive long working hours and they hardly get time to look after themselves. Getting up early in the morning and giving time for one’s health and body by doing exercise is reducing day by day. The sedentary lifestyle has affected health of individuals. Now-a-days with such sedentary lifestyle it is imperative to buy an insurance policy to cover for oneself and the family from any unforeseen events.
Insurance can easily be purchased by people with no diseases but does that mean that people having existing health conditions like diabetes, blood pressure, heart disease, cancer, kidney problem or liver diseases are denied of Life Insurance? The answer to this is NO. In India, there are a high percentage of people having pre-existing diseases. Although it is often challenging to get best sum assured from a life insurance but it is better that you explore and weigh all the options and give it a shot. As Now-a-days all life insurance companies understand how much it is important for people with existing health conditions to be insured so companies have come up with various plans that are available and custom made for various pre-existing health conditions. Let us now understand which points should be considered by people having a history of illness before applying for an insurance policy.
What is Pre-Existing Medical Condition?
Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) defines pre-existing medical condition as: “Any condition or ailment or injury for which the insured person had signs or symptoms, and/or was diagnosed, received medical advice or treatment within 48 months prior to the first policy issued by the insurer.”
Pre-existing health situation not only includes long term diseases or illness but also covers any history of hospitalization, any signs or symptoms of illness, any skin disorder or history of any major accidental injury.
How will Pre-Existing Medical Condition impact the life insurance cover?
Let us now understand how the pre-existing medicinal situation affect the life insurance policy that an individual wants to avail. It is a known fact that availing a life insurance, term insurance or health insurance policy while having existing health situation is a bit tedious as the insurance providers are hesitant to insure people with pre-existing illnesses as such individuals have more chances to frequent claims and that too it might occur immediately after availing the policy.
So individuals who have a pre-existing health check form have to consider and take a note of certain pre requisites put up by the insurance companies before buying the policy.
- Individuals with Pre-open health situation have to pay higher premium this is called as premium loading. Premium loading is the extra amount that you pay than any other individual without any medical history. Kindly note that this extra premium is only applicable if the individual is having any pre-existing illness at the time of buying the policy. If the medical condition arises after issuance of policy then the insurance company cannot charge extra premium to its customer.
- When an individual with Pre-open health situation wants to purchase an insurance policy then the individual would have a waiting period mentioned in the policy. This waiting period is normally of 2-4 years depending on the type of illness and the plan that the individual wants to purchase.
- Few insurance companies have both waiting period and premium loading on their plans.
- Medical checkup will be a perquisite while opting for an insurance policy for individuals with pre-existing medical order.
- Some insurance companies provide an option of giving a cover without considering the prior medical condition. So if you agree to this then insurance company will provide you cover by excluding your existing illness.
Having a Pre-open health situation should not stop you from buying an insurance plan for yourself, so while applying for a life insurance kindly follow the following DOs and DONTs:
- Opt for an independent insurance agent who will provide you every option under the sun as they can suggest good plans of various companies and would cater your needs perfectly.
- Explore all plans of all insurance providers and then opt for the best plan which suits you.
- Get the health check up done.
- Even if you have a pre-existing health situation try to stay fit with proper diet and exercise as prescribed by the doctor as it important to be healthy, if you are not already.
- Do not lie about any signs or symptoms of illness or disease.
- Do not lie about any history of hospitalization or any major accidental injury.
- Do not hide any pre-existing health situation and be transparent with the insurance company.
Thus after understanding all the perquisites it would be better if every person even with a Pre-open health situation should opt for a life insurance policy as it will safeguard the insured individual from any unforeseen risk and the related expenses.
Part of getting insurance is undergoing a process called underwriting. This process is basically where risk is assessed so the insurance company can determine what rate to charge you. During this process, you have no control over what information may come up or what the underwriters may discover. However, you still have a right to understand how the basic process works. This will help you as you look for insurance using a service like underwriting.com.
Gathering Identifying Information
The first part of the process will be where you are directly involved. You will be required to provide the insurance company or the company giving you a quote, like Ace Underwriting Group, personal information that will then be used to do an unwriting investigation. The information you will have to provide depends on what type of insurance you are getting. For auto insurance, for example, you would provide your name, driver’s license number, vehicle information and social security number. If you were getting home insurance, you would provide information about your home instead of your vehicle. It is important to make sure that you give them accurate information because any inaccurate information can slow down the underwriting process.
Gathering of Additional Information
The underwriting company will then take the information provided by your insurance company or a company like underwriting.com and use it to gather some additional information. Depending on what type of insurance you are getting, the company will likely look into your credit history, driving record, vehicle history, property information, health records and past insurance records. This process may take some time because underwriters want to gather the most accurate and complete information they possibly can.
After all the information has been gathered, the underwriter will then analyze the information. They will be looking for indications that you could be risky to insure. If you are getting auto insurance, for example, the underwriter will be concerned with any past violations or accidents. If he or she finds that you have had a history of violations or accidents, then they will mark you as an increased risk because you will be likely to continue with this same behavior in the future and such behavior may cost the insurance company money.
During the analysis of information, the underwriter may also compare you to others in your similar demographic group. Again, this may vary due to the type of insurance you are getting. For example, if you are getting auto insurance, they may compare you to others who drive the same vehicle or who are in the same age group. For home insurance, they may compare you to others living in the same area or with homes the same value as yours. This comparison can help them to further assign the amount of risk based on the insurance of others who are similar to you.
The insurance underwriting process is necessary for insurance companies to remain competitive and to maintain profits. It also helps to keep the system fair and allow you to shop around for the best rates, like at underwriting.com.