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Publiahed in Mint on 28th May, 2017. Written by Abhishek Bondia
Can I buy a family floater medical insurance policy for my wife, children, parents as well as my in-laws? I live in Ghaziabad and as my wife is an only child, I share the responsibility of her parents as well. Also, for the purposes of this policy, how is a family defined? For example, can I also include my domestic help in the plan?
—Narendra Gosain
For a family floater health insurance policy, the definition of family varies by plan. Most insurers define family as self, spouse and up to two children. There are a few plans available that let you cover extended families including parents and in-laws. However, such plans generally don’t allow cover of domestic helps under the same family health insurance plan.
Under a family floater policy, the sum assured of the plan would be shared across all the family members. For sharing the sum assured, you get a discount on the overall policy premium. Some insurers may also have a separate cover for each person and then an overall floating sum assured.
I generally recommend buying a separate plan for each couple, and including only dependent children in a family health insurance plan. That is because the insurances for senior citizens tend to be different from those for a nuclear family unit. Also, if there is a claim by any of the members, the no-claim bonus accrued on the overall plan gets lost. With elderly parents the probability of claims is higher.
I’m a car owner and have a learner’s license. My car recently met with an accident while being driven by my friend who has a valid driving license. At the time of accident, I and my family were in the car. My car suffered major damage. I had lodged an insurance claim. However, I’m worried because the enquiry process from the company is taking longer than usual. Given my circumstances, can the insurance company create hurdles or deny my claim?
—Padma Sahu
No, the insurer cannot reject your claim. If the car was being driven by a valid license holder, it is sufficient for the claim to be paid. In case of a major damage, insurer does need to verify the authenticity of the facts presented. It may also check if the driver was under the influence of alcohol.
I run a technology start-up with about 10 employees. I am always looking to hire talent from MNCs. Often, the breaking point is insurance benefits offered by the MNCs. Some companies offer health insurance for employees, spouse, kids and parents. In many cases they provide accidental death and disability insurance benefit of up to 10 times salary. An insurance agent informed me that these policies are custom designed for large firms only. I am willing to pay a premium, as these benefits have some optics to them. Can I buy similar plans for my firm?
—Mohinder Bansal
Yes it is possible for young organizations to buy similar insurance policies as the more established ones. Of course, the larger firms would get benefit of scale via lower premium.
You can buy a group health insurance and group personal accident insurance policies for your employees. In group policies, there is an option to add or delete employees. So, as and when, employees get added to the group, you can enroll them in the policy. Benefit would be available to the new employees from day 1. Most insurers prefer groups of over 50 people but, increasingly, insurers are creating special products for companies as small as 5 people.
My RWA has already purchased a home insurance for my flat. Should I still buy a separate plan? If I do that, can we get claim in both policies?
—Rakesh Gupta
RWAs typically buy insurance for the structure of the flat. Coverage is limited to the reconstruction cost for the structure of the flat. It generally does not cover contents of the house.
You should buy a home insurance to insure the contents of your house. Also, you should cross-check if the sum assured taken by the RWA is adequate. Often, RWAs fail to revise the sum assured upwards despite increased cost of reconstruction.
You cannot make the same claim in two different insurance policies. This would amount to profit and not allowed in insurance. So, if you take another insurance on the structure of the same flat, the claim would be shared by both policies in the ratio of their sum assured.