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Health Insurance Portability: How To Switch From One Insurance Company To Another?

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Just like mobile number and bank account number portability there is another very useful portability option available to you i.e ‘Heath Insurance Portability’. Health Insurance Portability allows policyholders to switch their policy to another insurance company without loosing benefits accumulated in the existing/current insurance policy. In simple words, if you are not very happy with the services of your health insurance company or if you are impressed with the features of another insurance company which is offering more benefits at equivalent or lower premium then you have an option to change your existing health insurance to a new insurer without loosing any of the benefits that your current health insurer provides.

Health Insurance Portability

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What Are The Benefits Of Health Insurance Portability To Policy Holders?

  • Better services from insurance companies like quick claim settlement.
  • New health insurance products with unique features like special insurance plans for senior citizens.
  • Lower premium cost.
  • Portability option is available on all individual health insurance policies, group health insurance policies and family floater policies.
  • Individuals covered under employer group health insurance policies or family floater policies can also port to individual health cover.
  • Accumulated/ Accrued benefits of existing insurance policy will be transferred to the new insurer at the time of porting like :-
    • Waiting Period – Time in which insurance company doesn’t entertain claims of the policyholder. It usually ranges from 30 days (for new policies) to 4 year (for pre-existing deceases) depending upon the medical history of the policyholder. Portability will offer the benefits of the waiting period served under existing insurance policy even on changing the insurer. This will benefit the policyholders (especially with pre-existing decease) as they do not have to serve the waiting period again on changing the insurer. For example:- if an insurer have to serve waiting period of 2 years and he has already served 6 months then on changing insurer he will have to serve waiting period of 1.5 years only.
    • Bonus – Bonus amount offered by the existing insurance company will be added to your new policy. For example :- a policyholder earned bonus of Rs 20,000 on his existing policy and in case of portability his bonus of Rs 20,000 will be clubbed to his sum insured.
    • Individuals insured covered under group insurance policy, such as one provided by the employer, can migrate from group policy to an individual health policy with the same insurer. One year after such migration, he can switch to any other non-life insurers.

What Are The Drawbacks Of Health Insurance Portability?

  • Policyholders covered under family floater policy or a group health insurance policy can port to an individual health insurance policy or to a family floater policy with new insurer, only after completion of 1 year with the existing insurer.
  • Terms and conditions of all health Insurance companies are very different.
  • Policyholder can switch to another insurance company only few days before the renewal.
  • For porting a group mediclaim – policyholders have to compulsorily transfer it to the same insurance company. After 1 year it can be transferred to any other insurer.
  • Policyholder may have to buy new policy with higher sum insured due to unavailability of similar plan, for which he will have to pay extra premium.
  • Some insurance companies do not club your no claim bonus or cumulative bonus to your new policy on portability. So in that case you will loose your bonus amount.

What Is The Procedure For Health Insurance Portability?

    • Policyholder can apply for the portability of health insurance only if premiums for the existing policy has been paid on time without any break. Breaking means non payment of premium on or before the renewal date or within 30 days thereof.
    • Policyholder will have to initiate the process by applying in a new insurance company at least 45 days before the policy renewal date.
    • Policyholder will have to submit the required documents, fill the application and portability form at new insurance company.
    • New health insurer will gather all the details of the policyholder like medical history, policy benefits etc. from the old insurer within 7 Days.
    • New health insurer can accept or reject your proposal on the basis of your medical or claim history.
    • In case of acceptance of your proposal at new health insurer, all your existing benefits will be transferred to your new policy.

What Are The Documents Required For Health Insurance Portability In India?

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Although the list of documents required for health insurance portability varies from company to company but here are a few documents which almost every insurance company asks for – for offering health insurance portability:-

  • Policy certificates
  • Renewal notices
  • Claim records (if any)
  • Self declaration – In case of no claim made
  • Medical records

How To Buy Portable Health Insurance?

Buying portable health insurance is almost same as buying a new policy, if you want to port your existing health insurance then look for an insurance which fulfills your requirements, compare price, and approach the new insurance company to apply for porting your insurance product.

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Also Read: Tax Benefits Of Health Insurance

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