Although as a society we are supposedly inching towards a gender neutral environment, we still have a long way to go. Insurance for women is yet to catch up in India and most non-earning homemakers are usually a part of family cover or a plan that involves the entire family. However, it would be safe to say that in the present scenario of the insurance market, there are several advantages offered for women as most insurance companies are wooing women to purchase attractive plans that are specifically aimed at women and cater to their needs. In order to rope in more female customers, insurance companies are offering insurance for women at significantly lower rates than those for men. This trend is expected to continue till more women continue to enter into the sphere of life insurance.
Difference in the rate of premiums for men and women
A simple example will show you how insurance companies in India charge a lower premium for women as compared with men. When Vishal and Revathy, both aged 30 and non-smokers, approach an insurance company for a policy covering a span of 30 years, there is a disparity in the premiums they have to pay owing to their gender alone. As a woman, Revathy pays at least 14% lesser premium than Vishal, despite both belonging to the same age group with similar lifestyles.
Why this disparity?
The simple reason why women enjoy more benefits than men as far as insurance is concerned is because on an average, a woman lives longer than a man. As per statistics, a woman outlives a man by five years, on an average. This is always beneficial for the insurance provider, as they will benefit more by offering insurance to women, even if they charge lesser premiums.
Also, women are in general less prone to developing heart conditions and other illnesses arising from excessive smoking or drinking, unlike men. Most men develop cardiovascular related disorders when they are in their late 50s or 60s, while women are more prone to develop these conditions into their 70s.
Both men and women will receive tax exemptions on their insurance policies
One of the major benefits of investing in a life insurance policy for both men and women is the fact that one can avail tax exemptions on it. One can avail deductions on premiums paid as per Section 80C of the Income Tax Act of 1961. The maximum tax benefit that can be availed is Rs 1.5 lakhs.
You may also like to read : Why Do Women Need Insurance?
Life Insurance Plans for Women
Here we enlist a few plans that offer several benefits especially tailor-made for women
TATA AIG Wellsurance
This plan includes cover for women for 11 critical illnesses, which include paralysis and various types of cancer. Also this plan provides the benefits of cashless hospitalisation across a network of over 3000 hospitals in India. Along with this, it offers to bear costs for post hospitalisation treatment and convalescence benefits.
HDFC Life Smart Woman Ulip
This is a good insurance plan for women as it covers important life changing events in a woman’s life, which include the birth of a child, death of the spouse or even critical life threatening diseases. This policy also has provisions through which a woman can stop paying premiums if her child is born with any congenital disabilities, if there are complications arising in the pregnancy or if the policy holder is diagnosed with cancer.
Bajaj Allianz Women-Specific Critical Illness Insurance
One of the best-suited plans available in India today, this plan of Bajaj Allianz life insurance provides coverage for eight critical illnesses women are prone to including breast cancer, ovarian cancer, and cervical cancer among others. Also, in case of any congenital disease of a new born baby, the policy assures 50% of the sum assured. Also the plan offers a special pay out to women who have lost their jobs owing to any critical illness.
While we can clearly see that presently, women enjoy better tailor-made plans to suit them compared to the general insurance plans which can be availed by all. However, maybe it is time that we realise the importance of insurance for women, whether they are professionals or homemakers and encourage more women to take up insurance policies to secure themselves.