Although term life insurance for anyone with dependents is essential, it becomes all the more prized if you are suffering from a critical illness. While the statement may seem bleak, the proceeds from term insurance can help your family sustain themselves financially should any misfortune were to befall you. The current insurance space features a plethora of term plans that can be availed by heart patients, albeit at higher premium rates than those charged for people with no medical history.Read more
Heart conditions in India have been on the rise due to changing lifestyles. According to public health estimates, India reportedly accounts for nearly 60% of the world’s cardiac burden. In fact, almost 25% of all deaths in the country can be accorded to cardiovascular diseases, as reported by the Global Burden of Disease. These seemingly grim facts should offer the right impetus towards purchasing the best term life insurance for yourself, especially if you are a heart patient with a number of dependents to look after. Term life insurance for heart patients in India can significantly calm the financial burden following the diagnosis.
The important question is how to avail of term life insurance for heart patients in India.
Term life insurance policies offer life cover to the policyholder for a specific term, ensuring financial protection to the family after the demise of the policyholder. Nearly every insurer features a host of term plans on their platforms, each serving some unique need. The coverage offered by term life policies vary based on the features, sum assured, riders, policy term, etc. Therefore, it is paramount to conduct your own research and ensure that you pick the best term life cover for yourself and as per your requirements.
If you are a heart patient, the procedure to purchase term insurance remains largely the same, except for making a few declarations. This involves the heart patient communicating about his/her medical history at the time of purchase. The insurer, in return, will ask the patient to undergo a medical examination as further evidence of your illnesses. Even if you do not disclose your medical condition, which is strongly advised against, insurers may ask you to undergo pre-policy medical screening based on your age.
Insurance companies, in some cases, impose a waiting period for heart patients or people suffering from a medical condition. Only after this waiting period can the interested parties buy a term life insurance plan. For instance, if you recently suffered from a heart attack, you will have to wait for the waiting period to be over before you get a term insurance policy for yourself. It usually ranges from 6 months to up to 3 years. The significance of this period is that it allows insurance providers to gauge your current health after the occurrence of the illness. The insurer will take into consideration disease management during this period in its underwriting process.
Note that life insurance cover is a risk undertaken by the insurer in insuring the life of a policyholder. Based on the risk involved, policy buyers are charged a premium amount. Given the higher degree of risk involved with heart patients, insurers will naturally charge a higher premium to offset this risk. You can expect anywhere between 10% to 15% higher rates of premiums if you have a pre-existing condition, such as heart disease.
The seriousness of your heart condition, the medical practitioner's first diagnosis report, the steps undertaken to manage the disease, your lifestyle choices, etc., will reflect in the underwriting process. The premium rate shall also depend on the age at which the term life policy is being bought, and sum assured, family history, lifestyle diseases, etc.
If you are a heart patient looking for a suitable term insurance cover, factor in the following aspects before purchasing the policy.
The insurer might invalidate the benefits of a policy at the time of death claim settlement if they later find that crucial information about your critical illness was withheld.
You will be required to disclose information about the date of the first diagnosis, the severity of the condition, treatment received / ongoing, tobacco usage, pre-existing lifestyle conditions such as obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, family history of heart conditions, and current medication, among others.
Keep all relevant documents related to hospitalization, consultations, treatment, etc., handy to ensure a smooth buying process.
Figure out the waiting period of different insurers and shortlist ones that offer the shortest waiting periods. This will ensure that you get the desired coverage sooner.
As mentioned, the insurer will take into consideration any information about how you have been managing your heart condition. If you can establish that you are healthy post the first diagnosis, the insurer may charge lower premiums. However, this is subject to the insurance provider’s discretion.
To cover for treatment-related expenses, consider investing in a critical illness rider.
Critical illness riders are add-on benefits that you can attach to the base term cover. These riders offer payouts as a percentage of the sum assured on the first diagnosis. Critical illness riders are common across term life insurance plans and are available at an additional cost. Each insurer publishes a list of pre-specified illnesses that their respective term plans will cover if the rider is opted for. This rider benefit shall be extra from the death benefit amount assured under the term life cover. If you have previously suffered from a heart condition, you should opt for this rider to avoid incurring high costs of treatment if the condition were to repeat in the future.
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