We have shortlisted a set of critical illness plans, which we will start reviewing. We begin with the Activ Secure Critical Illness Plan by Aditya Birla Health Insurance, which we think is a good plan for high-income earners.
Health insurance for senior citizens is a hard puzzle to solve. As we age, the probability of hospitalisation and associated expenses increases. So, from a consumer’s perspective, it makes sense to get medical insurance with good coverage. But for insurers, seniors policies are not as lucrative because most policyholders will more likely make a claim. On top of it, unlike life insurance, every health insurance policy is renewable for life. Insurers cannot stop servicing high risk customers once they’ve been given a policy.
We’re starting our insurance review series with Star Health Young Star Insurance Policy. This is a policy designed for younger policyholders who are either single, or just married or in the early stages of their career.
HDFC Life Sanchay Plus is a non-linked, non-participating plan, which means that your returns from it are not dependent on the market or HDFC Life’s performance. You will be paid the promised return irrespective of both. The plan carries a life insurance component along with a return component.
Star Health and Allied Insurance Co Ltd (Star Health), India’s leading standalone health insurer, is making an IPO worth Rs. 7,249 crore comprising a fresh issue of shares valued at Rs.2,000 crore and an offer for sale of Rs.5,249 crore. The issue will open on November 30 and close on December 2 at a price band of Rs. 870-900 per share. At the upper end of the price band, Star Health will be valued at Rs. 51,800 crore (~$7 billion).
It becomes important to choose the best term insurance plan for you given what an important part of your financial security toolkit is, and the fact that term plans are at the moment not portable (ability to move between insurers) like health insurance plans.
Insurance policies are always purchased with the hope that they will never be needed. Personal accident covers are no exception. Many of us would rather not even think about accidents – but this shouldn’t stop us from thinking about protection for us and our dependents against the financial burden, in the eventuality that an accident does occur.
You do need insurance to cover this risk. We think that critical illness policies would be a good choice here. The advantage of buying a critical illness insurance plan is that on diagnosis of a specified serious illness, the insurer pays you a promised lumpsum amount with no questions asked on how you’re planning to spend the money. Critical illness covers are usually offered from a very young age with the age of entry capped at 60 or 65. These policies, however, offer life-long renewability. While many insurers waive medical tests for younger folk, taking such a test can ensure a better claims experience at a later date.
Advisors love to promote market-linked products, but guaranteed return products remain a big draw for Indian investors. Often the word ‘guarantee’ proves such a big lure that we don’t stop to check if the returns being guaranteed are better than the savings bank interest rate! When seen from a return perspective, there are very few guaranteed products from insurers that are worth considering for long-term investing.
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