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Bought my Shield Plan already – Am I stuck with it forever?

Posted 25 June, 2017 by Clearly
in Product Reviews

Despite the foreboding title, it is really a good problem to have.

You’ve gone out there some time ago and gotten a Shield Plan. Then you see new insurers coming into the fray with improved offers, while others have famously hiked their prices. Here comes the inevitable, creeping wonder: Could I do better than my existing plan?

The answer is, yes you probably could. But that really isn’t the correct question.
The real question is –  Should you do better than your existing plan?

We present arguments for both sides to help you out of this pickle.

 

Why Stay Put

 

Marriage

Till death do us part – may not only be applicable for marriages

 

Your health may have deteriorated
Your health may not have been the same as it was before. To apply for a new policy might entail fresh underwriting (the Insurer’s assessment of you).

If you developed health conditions such as high hypertension, high cholesterol, diabetes, liver disease, then these conditions might not be covered (excluded) any more or you could be saddled with higher than usual premiums.

 

There are fresh waiting periods to undergo
A new policy also entails various waiting periods, which is a mandatory stretch of time from the policy start date during which certain benefits are not payable under the new plan. This feature is meant to prevent people from buying policies only when they are aware of their illnesses – with the aim to claim shortly after.

In Shield Plans for example, there can be a 10 month waiting period for Pregnancy Complications benefits, and up to a 24 month waiting period for an Insured to be an Organ Donor. (Yes, these plans even cover treatment costs should you decide to donate your organ as a living donor. Fun fact of the day.)

 

You are satisfied with your current Policy
Why fix that which is not broken?

 

Why Improve your Policy

 

Cake

No real reason why you can’t have your cake and eat it too

 

Greater Flexibility in Riders
Riders used to come in one size only – which means no customization, save for the fact that you can select which Wards or Hospitals you choose to receive treatment in.
These days, there are a plethora of options available for Shield Plan riders – and you can pick and choose only those that make the most sense to you.

By selecting only the relevant riders, you could be reducing your annual premiums as well.

 

Enhanced Coverage
Competition is stiff among the different Shield Plan providers – which is a great thing for us, the consumer. Shield Plans provide a host of benefits, but we highlight two crucial ones here to underscore the variability in different policies. We use Private Hospital plans as a benchmark.

Annual Claims Limit – The Maximum amount you can claim per policy year

Lowest – 300k
Highest – 1000k

Pre/Post-Hospitalization Claims Duration – The number of days that claims are covered for pre/post admission

Lowest – 90 Pre / 90 Post
Highest – 180 Pre / 365 Post

Source Here

 

Get better Value
Improving your policy also makes perfect sense if the new one can provide similar benefits at lower cost, or provide better benefits at the same cost as your current plan.

 

Decision Time

 

So should you be stuck with your existing policy? We say yeah, it’s good to just stick with what you have, unless:

– You want to improve upon your current coverage
– Your health condition is still impeccable
– You wish to pick and choose relevant riders
– You are not satisfied with your current provider

If you score a perfect 4/4 for the checklist above, now is probably a great chance to take action.

Think its time to improve your Shield Plan? Or do you need assistance in selecting the right one? AXA is ready to help – right here.

 

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www.ClearlySurely.com aims to eradicate the knowledge gap between consumers and Life Insurance. Our Vision is that one day, every Man, Woman, and Child will be properly insured.

This post is brought to you by AXA. All views and opinions presented in the article are those of www.ClearlySurely.com

  1. Devan Tay

    Your longest pre and post hospitalization is incorrect. Highest Claim Limits isn’t $1000K. It is double that amount. AXA is not the insurer that can offer the highest in these two categories since Jan 2017.

    1. Clearly

      Devan.

      You are partially right at best. But to include those numbers would be misleading because they come with a certain set of conditions.

      The 2000k limit comes with a condition to be treated by a certain insurer’s preferred providers. Using non preferred providers would result in the cover being 600k only. Likewise for prehospitalization benefits.

      Cover limits with proposed conditions might not be what everyone is looking for. And we stated the source for everyone to cross check.

      Finally, we did not insinuate anything about what AXA provides or not. This article is not about chest thumping about any insurer’s product – but to let readers understand the rationale on why they should or should not change plans.

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