If medical insurance is a yearly outgo for you, then you definitely need to know these three things.
- How Much of Your Premium is paid to your agent?
- How Much is the annual increase in the premium?
- Do you want to port your policy? If yes, you need to notify your insurer 45 days in advance.
If you like me began paying medical insurance way back when online policies were not the norm, you would have manually filled some forms and got your medical tests and started paying premiums annually.
Everyone back then would tell you to take a medical insurance policy (not only the one that your employer provides). So, it was one of the MUST haves. We also bought the best one that was offered to us. Little did we know what we were getting into.
A fixed % of the premium we paid every year was going to the agent who initially helped you buy the policy. We all know this to an extent but I was surprised when I found out how much that was.
In 2021, my renewal premium notice had an amount that looked unnatural to say the least. The amount drew my attention and I started researching.
That is when I found out that the Y-o-Y (year-on-year) increase was over 20%. You might think, it is a COVID year, what more can you ask for?
Even then, I felt extremely uncomfortable. Even with COVID and the associated costs, I could not agree on the premium amount.
That's when I called the insurer and I was shocked when I heard what they said. The difference in the offline vs online premium amount for a 5L (5 lakh) sum assured was more than 40%.
This is the amount the agent got if I paid the premium this time. A year when your inflows are so far and few, a 40% bonus to an agent was unthinkable.
So armed with this information, I asked the insurer if I could just port (aka portability) my policy from offline to online.
Now I get the next blow as the insurer confirmed that I could only port 45 days before the premium due date and here I was with one week to go for my premium payment.
If you are one of those people who ends up paying premiums on the due date, whatever the amount, its time to rethink.