Learn About Disability Insurance Policy
Life is very much unpredictable, and no one can predict what is coming next. Accidents, physical and mental disorders, and congenital anomalies are unexpected conditions that can impact your financial stability. Apart from normal health insurance policies, disability insurance is a very critical insurance plan that you must consider having. Census 2001 revealed that over 21 million people in India are suffering from one or the other kind of disability. Out of this, 12.6 million are males and 9.3 million are females. Disability insurance covers the portion of the income that you were earning before the critical illness or injury.
Firstly, let’s understand what disability insurance is?
Disability insurance policy is a plan that provides coverage for disabilities caused by accidents or severe illnesses like cancer, heart disease, etc. It is an insurance scheme that covers you financially if you are unable to return to work due to short-term or long-term disability. There may be varied causes of disability, mental health disorder, injury, accidents, or serious ailment. Generally, the coverage is provided on a monthly basis, but it differs from one insurer to the other. When the disability occurs, the insured has to wait for a defined period of time before receiving the benefits from disability insurance.
Also, of note, most health insurance companies do not offer a policy for congenital anomalies or disabilities by birth as they pose a high risk for coverage. The disabilities caused by war, normal pregnancy, and suicide attempts are also not covered under disability insurance.
Factors to consider while selecting a disability insurance coverage:
- Coverage amount: Be diligent in assessing your needs and select the plan, keeping in mind your income level and age. Choose the sum assured such that you and your family could continue to maintain your current lifestyle even if a contingency arises.
- Determine the disabilities covered: While buying health insurance for disabled, there are a wide variety of options available in the market. Compare the degree of disability (total or partial) and types of disabilities covered across various products and choose the one with the widest coverage.
- Refund feature: Some products provide the functionality of refund of a part of your premium amount if no claim is made within the specified period.
- Read the policy wording: For the different degree of disability, different percentages of the sum insured is paid. In the case of partial disability, the percentage may differ depending on the policy wording. So, read the policy document carefully.
There are various government-sponsored health insurance policies for the disabled:
- Nirmalya Health Insurance: It is a government-sponsored health insurance scheme for people with mental disabilities. This scheme provides coverage of Rs. 1 Lakh at a low premium rate with benefits including pre and post hospitalisation expenses and OPD treatment.
- Swavalamban Health Insurance: It is a custom-tailored insurance scheme to suit the needs of those with disabilities. This plan requires the insured to pay a single premium in one go and avail the coverage at any time of treatment. This policy can be availed only for those disabled individuals with a family income of Rs. 3 Lakh and below. No pre-medical test is required. There is no exclusion of pre-existing conditions. It aims in providing affordable insurance to people with blindness, vision problem, disability related to hearing and mental disabilities.
In addition to these, there are various other plans offered for disabled in India. Some of these are LIC’s Jeevan Bharti-I Plan, which provides a rider for congenital disability for the lives of women and Apollo Munich plans for disabled individuals. Though there are schemes launched by the government and insurance companies for the financial independence of individuals; still a lot needs to be done with regards to disability insurance. Obtaining the health insurance policy for the disabled is a gruelling task.
Here’s the process for obtaining disability insurance:
- If the insured faces a critical ailment or injury, such that he is unfit to continue his current occupation, he is required to check with the insurer whether his condition is covered by the policy or not.
- If the condition is covered, the insured is to fill a claim form and submit all the required documents depending on the case.
- After submitting the documents, the insurance company will investigate the claim, and the claim will be approved or rejected.
You can either choose a short-term disability policy or long-term disability policy. A short-term disability policy will have a benefit period of no more than two years. For long-term disability, the benefit period ranges from several years throughout your life. As discussed, the coverage depends on the risk rate of the insured. But, this doesn’t mean that you should not invest in health insurance, fearing whether the insurer will cover your disability or not.
A medical emergency can come without warning. It is difficult to predict whether you are going to face an injury or illness that may keep you out of work and also tough to understand for how long? Disability insurance is needed to provide security in times of need. Thus, invest in disability insurance to meet all your health-related contingencies. If you need assistance, please free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for all your health insurance needs.