Health Insurance and Tax Benefits: Are You Aware?

Financial scholars propose that the while doing your financial planning, the foremost step is to ensure your good health, and there is nothing than a health insurance plan to ensure your financial safety. Hereby one must opt for health insurance for self or their families. And the most alluring fact that, the amount paid as health insurance premium also exempted from tax deduction and this way it contributes to tax benefit. You can find various health insurance plans including L&T health insurance, which offer tax benefits along with other advantages.

Here are some lesser-known facts debunked about tax saving advantages of medical insurance.

Premium paid for Parents:

Section 80D of Indian Income Tax Act says that one can avail tax benefit from paying the premium towards their parents’ heath insurance policies, self, children or spouse, irrespective of the parents or children are reliant on them or not. You an avail a maximum tax benefit of Rs. 25,000 in a year, by paying the premium towards health insurance for child, spouse, self or parents.

In case the premium paid for the parents who are above 60 years old, the maximum cap is for tax benefit is Rs. 30,000 in a year. This way you can avail tax benefits up to 55,000, when you are below 60 and your parent’s age is more than 60. Again, those who are at their 60s or more and also paying health insurance premium for their parents can enjoy tax benefit up to 60,000 per year.

Medical check-ups

You can avail tax benefit up to Rs. 5000, within the slab of Rs 25,000-30,000 premium paid towards your health insurance. With preventive medical check-up projects offered by various hospitals, you can enjoy tax benefits on the amount you paid. For instance, you pay the premium of 30,000 towards health plan and done a mediclaim check-up for Rs. 5,000. Under 80D the total cost you can aviled for tax benefit is 35,000. With lifestyle illnesses on the climb, it’s always advisable to keep a regular check on one’s health.

Tax Benefit on ‘indemnity’ and ‘defined benefit’ Plans

Both ‘indemnity’ and ‘defined benefit’ health insurance policies offer tax benefit. Indemnity plans include Mediclaim and Family Floater plans while ‘defined benefit plans’ like daily hospital cash policy and critical illness policy of any health or general insurance provider would refer for tax saving benefit.

Life insurance companies riders

As per Section 80D the premium paid towards health insurance is exempted from tax deduction and hence one is not restricted from buying health plan only from health insurance companies. You can avail tax benefits on premium paid towards medical insurance or critical illness riders in a life insurance policy, as mentioned in the same section on Income Tax Act.

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Cash payment

If you want to avail tax benefit on your premium, avoid paying by cash. You may find paying your premium in cash. But the insurance experts advice not to pay in cash. Rather you can opt for other paying modes like net banking, cheque, draft or credit card. With internet booming, it is much easier to pay through your debit or credit cards in one go without any hassle. But you can pay in cash while going for preventive medical check-ups and avail tax benefit under Section 80D.

There is no point investing randomly anywhere to save taxes. . But paying for health insurance means you are not only securing your health but also it aids in restoring your peace of mind during tax-paying period. With sky-high medical expenses, purchasing a medical insurance policy certainly restrain you from being bankrupt. However, health insurance plans may vary insurer to insurer in terms of premium rate, features and so require an informed decision!

Steps to File Health Insurance Claim

If you’re lucky then filing claim for your medical insurance plan will be a smooth process. Otherwise, filing claim can be an annoying process for some people. If there isn’t any support from your insurance provider then, it could be problematic for you. There can be situations where cashless facility won’t be provided by the nursing home/ hospital. The incurred hospitalization expenses can be claimed after the patient is either discharged from the hospital or his/her treatment is completed. People buy Mediclaim policies so that they don’t have to face any financial at the time of hospitalization.

If you have to register a medical insurance claim, you should keep all the receipts and set them in a chronological order. You need to get a claim form from your medical insurance provider. After that, you have to prepare Xerox copies of the original form for claim submission, review it and then dispatch all the documents. Before you do that, you are advised to read the fine print of the policy document very carefully. You must keep all the bills, receipts along with the medical reports that you have got at the time of the hospitalization and 30 days before and 60 days after hospitalization. The health facilities availed during this time period which is a part of the treatment, are applicable for the reimbursement.

Here are the details that will help you to understand the claim filing process in a better way.

You can file a claim under a medical insurance plan in the following two ways.

  1. Cashless basis
  2. Reimbursement basis

Cashless Basis- For a cashless basis claim, your need to undergo the treatment specifically at a network hospital that is providing its services to your insurance provider. You’ve to seek authorization for undergoing the medical treatment on a cashless basis according to the laid down procedures in the form. Read the policy documents the moment you get it so that you get familiarized with the process so that filing for a claim becomes a smooth process for you.

Reimbursement Basis- Carefully read the clauses regarding the claims in your insurance document after you get it to make sure that you get the understanding of the procedure as well as the required documents for filing a claim for reimbursement. When you need to file a claim, inform your insurance provider. After hospitalization, make sure that you get all the documents. Once you get all the documents, keep the documents like claim form, prescriptions, discharge summary, bills etc. with care as you need to submit them for filing a claim.

Generally, all the medical insurance claims need to be registered within seven days of discharge or completion of the treatment from any of the network hospital. Keep in mind that health insurance providers won’t pass the claims if any of the documents aren’t in coordination with their terms and conditions.

We hope that now you know what is the process of filing an insurance claim and what are the steps involved in this step.

Does Your Travel Insurance Plan Ensure Coverage for Terrorism?

The ever growing terrorist attacks have put this in a limelight to have insurance against terrorist attack. There are some places which attract a large number of travellers because of their scenic beauty, age long heritage or many things. When these places are highly rated as the best places to explore, the proximity of terrorist attacks can not be ignored. We can take the example of Kashmir in India. Termed as ‘heaven on earth’ the beauty of this place can’t be explained in words. But, conversely, the livelihood is always uncertain there because of the frequent terrorist attack. Hereby, if your next travel destination is Kashmir then you should double check that your travel insurance covers terrorist attack. Same goes with the international trip if you are planning any. While a Schengen visa covers 26 European countries, having travel insurance is a must! In this article we discuss does travel insurance cover terrorist activities while you are travelling.

Coverage Against Trip Cancellation Due to a Terrorist Attack

While most of the travel insurance companies consider international or domestic terrorism as one of the root cause of trip cancellation, Tata Aig Travel Insurance strictly exclude terrorism. However, the insurance companies providing the assistance will consider only if a terrorist event happens at your foreign or domestic travel destination within 30 days of the day of your scheduled arrival. To enjoy the insurance benefits, you need to purchase the plan before an unforeseen event occurred.

Coverage for Terrorist Attack on Flights

An insurance company like Allianz Global Assistance covers trip cancellation due to a terrorist attack. Also, trip cancellation due to hijacking is also covered. During these situations, you can contact the local authorities through the travel company and find an alternate option to get home securely.

Threat of Terrorist Incident is Not Covered

Abruptly, before your scheduled departure to visit family in the USA, an elite group constantly makes terrorist threats, causing the state government to issue travel alert urging vigilance. Considering the risk, you call off the trip, hopping to reschedule it in near future. Will your travel insurance plan cover trip cancellation?

You may like to read : Travel insurance: Everything you Need to Know in 6 Steps

No, because no terrorist incident occurred till date and fear or threat of terrorism is not covered by an insurance plan.  Moreover, general civil protest, an act of war, riots are not considered as terrorism and so no travel coverage is provided for the same.

What Are all Covered?

Considering the urgency, many travel insurance companies provide assistance for listed expenses arising out of a terrorist turbulence-

  • Trip Cancellation
  • Medical expenses
  • Loss of Passport
  • Repatriation of remains
  • Accommodation expense will be reimbursed in case you have to extend your stay due to an emergency
  • Compassionate visit
  • Hospitalisation costs of a terrorist victim
  • Pre and post hospitalisation expenses including the ambulance cost as well

Well, irrespective of the insurance plan, you need to go through the policy wordings in detail before signing on the dotted line of an application form. Again, before flying to abroad, double check your travel insurance policy norms to ascertain whether the facilities will extend to countries other than India or not. Besides, policies may provide insurance against terrorist activities; insurers may cause a problem in accepting a claim if the policyholder visits places which are in high risk or intentionally defies the risk. Hereby, if exploring new places is your passion, we urge you to seek for insurance cover that considers the e possibilities of sudden terrorist unrest and losses arise out of it!

IRDA Revises Third-party Insurance Rates: Here is All You Need to Know

 The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) has introduced some changes to third-party insurance by introducing revised third party insurance premium rates for some categories of vehicles. The new premium rates have been in force from April 1, 2017. With this announcement, changes in terms of premium rate are visible in the good carrying vehicles or public carriers. Three wheelers are excluded, however.

The IRDA’s recent report dated March 28, 2017, indicated a massive hike in premium rates for goods carrying vehicles, which went up to 40%. The rate varied depending on the load. If take the example of previous rates range between INR 15,365- INR 24,708. This rose up to INR 23,047-Rs 37,062 with the increase of premium rate.  It was also on news that truckers in the South went on strike for 10 days protesting the sheer hike in the compulsory auto third-party insurance. They also held discussions with the concern regulatory body asking for a reduction in rates.

With the new announcement made by IRDA, significant changes have been visible. Let’s take the above example. Applying the new rules, now the rates range from Rs. 21,511 – Rs. 36,120 to Rs. 19,667-Rs 33,024.

The premium for private cars is affected as well especially those exceeding 1000 cc and 1500 cc, including special types of vehicle, agricultural tractors and two wheelers.

Revised Premium Rates:

Vehicle Type Previous Rate New Rate
Cars with engine capacity (more than 1,500 cc) 8,630 7,890
Cars with engine capacity (less than 1,000 cc) 2,055 No change
Goods carrying vehicles or public carriers (Exceeding 40,000 kg) Rs 36,120 Rs 33,024
Mid-segment cars (1,000cc – 1,500 cc) Rs 3,132 Rs. 2,863

The two-wheelers are also introduced with reduced premium rate. Similarly, reduction has also affected e-rickshaws or other passenger-carrying vehicle.  However, if we compare the current economic, the premium rates are still higher.

What is Third-Party Insurance?

Also famous as an ‘act only’ policy, the third-party insurance protects against the actions of the third party. This policy covers claims for damages or losses caused by you to a third party. It is a kind of insurance purchased by the first party-the insured, by the second party-an insurer, for ensuring financial assistance against the claim of others-the third party. The first party wouldn’t get any benefits in this event. This plan is mandatory by the law for all car owner at the time of purchasing a car.

 

The Benefits of a Family Floater Health Insurance Plan

At the time of buying a health insurance plan,  people come across the concept of family floater medical insurance plan. This article will be your guideline about how a floater health insurance plan works and how it is beneficial for you. It will help you to make better insurance decisions for yourself and your family.

In an individual medical insurance plan, every individual is provided coverage for the specific limit of his/her insurance plan coverage limitation. On the other hand,  a family floater medical insurance plan covers each person to the limit of the total coverage in a single master plan that is applicable for an entire family. A family health insurance premium is economical. Basically, it offers every family member the advantage of exhausting the entire sum assured as the master plan in case there is any need.

The family floater medical insurance plan is a great plan because every family member gets a larger insurance cover. The chances are lower that anyone in the family would get hospitalized in a single year. It is because not everyone will have a health issue at the same time. In a rare case scenario, this might also happen.

Benefits of a Family Floater Health Insurance Plan

  1. Better Coverage for the Individuals-As every family member can use the benefits of a family cover, every member gets a higher coverage by paying the same premium.
  2. Better Coverage for the Senior Citizens-There can be times when the individual medical insurance plans for senior citizens can create a technical issue because of cut-off renewals above a specific age. But, when they are a part of a family floater medical insurance plan, there isn’t any problem as such.
  3. Economical-Generally, the premium for a family floater medical insurance policy is lower than the total premium of individual health insurance policies. Buying a family floater health insurance plan doesn’t make a hole in your pocket.
  4. Easily Manageable- Buying different health insurance plans for the different family members means remembering multiple renewals dates that start and end at the different times. Buying a family floater medical insurance policy saves you from all this pain as it is a single plan that comes with one renewal date. This is easier to manage.
  5. Easy to Add New Members-Instead of purchasing a fresh medical insurance policy when there is a new addition to your family such as wife or baby, then it is very easy to add that member to a family floater medical insurance policy.
  6. The plan Continues if a Family Member Dies- If a senior family member who is included in your family floater health insurance policy dies, the policy continues with all its benefits.

A family floater medical insurance plan offers a great value for money. It is a good choice for buying a health insurance plan for your family. It secures you financially by offering you a combined health insurance package that is very economical.

5 Benefits of Having Add-on Coverage for Your Car

The adequacy of a car insurance plan is felt most when your car meets an accident and gets damaged or when you rush for the police station to file a FIR against the theft of your vehicle. In both situations, a standard motor insurance will ensure monetary assistance to help you financially. Though a maximum amount of your loss is being reimbursed by the insurer, your pocket still feels the pinch. There are always some expenses, which you need to pay by own or comprehensive car insurance plans don’t cover. Here, come the add-on car covers in the scene!

 

Unlike the past years, where general insurance companies in India offered standard motor insurance, a plethora of additional coverage is served to meet the extra expenses, along with your main insurance policy. In addition to own damage or third-party liability, these add-on plans offer several other benefits. These add-ons are very useful and the best part is that they don’t cost much. Nevertheless, before coming to a conclusion, one you should look under the hood of each of these add-on cover to get a hands on it.

Engine Coverage

You will find no insurance fine print copy, which includes damages that caused to car engine due to negligence or wear and tear. You are smart enough to estimate the hefty repair cost incurred as the engine is the most expensive part of the car. In the events like car engine breaking down due to running without engine oil, waterlogged or negligence, your insurer wouldn’t provide any assistance. However, this is a rare case, but safety matters and here an additional cover may save you from being insolvent.

Roadside Assistance

 This has been proven as a useful feature for women or elderly persons. This assistance is designed to provide roadside help in the event of your car running out of fuel, tire puncture, collapse due to any reason. With this add-on you can avail help from the insurance company in arranging for fuel, repair the flat tyre or towering facility to the garage if required.

Zero Depreciation

 With a normal car insurance plan, you will get only the depreciated value of the car parts damaged in the accident. This is okay with the low priced cars. However, highly priced car owners have to suffer if damages occur which need to be replaced. With a zero depreciation add-on, you can avail the full value of the part. However, this is not applicable to the older cars, mainly the cars older than 5 years. Also, the safe drivers can ignore this.

Retain NCB

 No Claim Bonus is offered for every claim free year where the policyholder gets a discount on premium. However, even a single claim is made, the NCB turns to 0% with no time. By purchasing an NCB retention add-on, you can protect your earned NCB. With this NCB, if you make a claim, your NCB will be protected to some extent, instead of becoming ZERO percent.

 

Daily Garage Grant

 

This add-on is very useful for those who are highly dependable on their cars. Daily garage allowance cover comes handy when your car has gone for repairs. You will be given a daily allowance of INR 500 for 14 days if the car is in the garage for more than two days. However, the amount and number of days may vary from insurer to insurer.

 

 

Adding an additional cover with your main car insurance policy, you may require paying some amount from your pocket but would guarantee a financial security towards any damage or loss of your car.

 

Extending Your Trip? Travel Insurance Top-Ups Can Help

A travel insurance plan provides you much-needed coverage for all the various situations such as trip cancellation, medical emergencies, and a wide of other difficult situations which can make you feel inconvenient and uncomfortable during your trip. On the other hand, Bajaj Allianz Travel insurance plans make your travel very enjoyable.

A travel insurance plan provides you much-needed coverage for all the various situations such as trip cancellation, medical emergencies, and a wide of other difficult situations which can make you feel inconvenient and uncomfortable during your trip. On the other hand, Bajaj Allianz Travel insurance plans make your travel very enjoyable. Everybody has a tight budget when it comes to making travel plans. The people who spend their hard-earned money on travel plans are very particular about their budget. They always look for amazing deals and great ways that can help them to travel more and save more at the same time. In order to cut costs on their travel budget, it is common for people to skip buying insurance. This is the grave mistake that people do as travel insurance isn’t the place where one should cut the costs.

How can you add more coverage and time on your travel insurance policy?

A majority of people do not know that there is an easy and convenient way to extend their existing travel insurance plan by buying top-up plans. On the basis of what type of travel insurance plan you have purchased, it is very easy to buy extra protection.

You purchased travel insurance plan, but you want to extend your travel?

The best thing about travel insurance plans is that most of the travel insurance providers offer flexible travel insurance plans. Insurers understand that you might be on a trip and you had such a great time that you want to stay for more days now. Whatever your reason is, don’t let your travel insurance’s last date be the sole reason for your early return. Travel insurers offer top-up insurance plans that can help you in such situation.

Top-Up Travel Insurance Plans to Extend Group Insurance Policies

In case your travel insurance is provided to you through your work, chances are high that it might be valid for a particular duration. Keep in mind that you can always extend your travel insurance plan with the help of a top-up as it is an economical option.

You may like to read : Make Sure You Have Travel Insurance before Visiting These Places

What Questions Could Be Asked When You Buy a Top-Up Plan?

Your insurance provider would re-assess your eligibility. All the elements that were applicable when you applied for buying travel insurance would be valid yet again.

Be prepared to answer the questions mentioned below.

1. Did you have any disease or were you hospitalized in the last 90 days?

2. Are there any changes made in your prescriptions?

3. Did you need any health care facility?

4. Do you have any pre-existing medical condition?

How a top-ups travel insurance plan works?

The top-up plan works the same way as a regular insurance plan. It doesn’t provide extend your coverage, it extends travel insurance plan only.

What are the factors that affect the price of travel insurance?

In case there are any changes made during your trip, your eligibility for extending your travel insurance coverage can be changed to a certain extent. The factors affecting the travel insurance plans are mentioned below.

1. Your travel destination

2. Are you traveling to a specific country or various countries?

3. Your age

4. Pre-existing illnesses

5. Duration of your trip

6. The type of insurance cover you want