This pandemic has changed the way we look at life. So, last weekend, a bunch of us college friends got together for Sunday lunch. Now, we met with masks on, sanitized our hands and chairs etc before we started getting into the ‘normal’ (without masks) setting. As always, lunch with friends is always around revisiting college memories, ranting about daily life at home and work, and surprisingly, the conversation steered towards Covid-19. There were few obvious questions around how each of us has secured ourselves and dependents against any health issues. What shocked us was that 40% of us didn’t have any insurance and were hoping everything would be fine ‘forever’.So, this blog is just an outcome of that lunch. In our previous blog, we discussed how group health insurance and individual health insurance are different yet alike. But let's address the elephant in the room- should you have individual insurance if your company is already offering you corporate group insurance?
Why Do Some Indians Still Insist On Individual Health Insurance?
Source: Care Insurance
With extensive coverage, a simpler claim process, low costs and multiple benefits (starting from Day 1 of enrollment), Group Health Insurance is mostly a brilliant choice for employees. However, there is a huge following towards Individual Insurance among Indians. Here is why:
- Saves taxes, but is beneficial only if employees fall under that higher tax bracket
- Employees can customise the plan as per their individual needs
- Employees don’t need to make the copayment, often
- Employees are entitled to a No Claim bonus
- Employees can decide the coverage period as per their convenience and needs
Given the inclination towards individual health insurance plans, the employees are often left confused if they should have an individual plan if their employer has already covered them through group insurance (sometimes also known as corporate insurance) plan.
4 Reasons You Should Have Group Insurance As Well As Individual Insurance
Companies have come a long way from being mere authoritative set-ups to being highly autonomous and inclusive. This means that when candidates interview for a company, they not only look at the pay package but also consider the physical and mental well being that the new workplace will offer.
Source: Financial Express
What do companies offer to step up and meet the right candidates halfway? They offer insurance! Group insurance is insurance offered by employers to their employees. The premium amount is often shared between the employer and the employees, and often covers the dependents of the employees (parents, spouse, and children) against medical expenses. Here are our top 4 reasons you should have group insurance as well as individual insurance:
1. Post-retirement Benefits:
While group insurance expires after the employees leave their employer or retire, individual insurance stays with them for as long as they want.
2. Expanded Cover:
Group insurance offers coverage against all the common health issues including, the annual medical check-up. Individual insurance on the other hand is comprehensive and customised as per your specific needs. Having both can help you avail the benefits as per the treatment required.
3. Waiting Period:
Group health insurance gives you full coverage from day 1 while individual insurance has a waiting period for 2-4 years for certain diseases. It is wise for employees to use group insurance stead for medical attention against these diseases. Also, there are no medical tests required for group insurance before enrollment.
4. Senior Citizen Health Guard:
In a number of cases, group health insurance may be the only insurance for your parents (above 60 years of age). Your individual insurance can cover them while group insurance may just come in handy for their parents.
When Do You NOT Need Individual Insurance
Some group insurance plans are so well chalked out, that one might just not need an individual plan at all.
1. Portable Group Health Insurance:
Group health insurance can be ported. This allows you to transfer your group insurance to an individual cover for rider benefits at an extra cost at the time of leaving the company. This can help to improve employer branding. Additionally, the waiting period of 30 days is waived off. Sounds like a charmer to us!
2. Added Coverage and Benefits:
Employers often cover accidental liability and employee travel (if the job role requires domestic/international travel) in group insurance. Employers have even started to provide wellness benefits; giving easy and secure access to the well-being of professionals. In such cases, individual insurance will not add much value to your employees.
So, Should You Have Individual Insurance If Your Company Is Already Offering You Group Insurance?
At the end of the day, insurance is an individual’s personal choice. If your company is already offering group insurance to you, most of your family’s healthcare needs are taken care of. However, individual insurance can be more comprehensive and may provide an extra blanket in unforeseen circumstances. Buying individual insurance is worth it as long as it is covering your and your dependents especially when the group insurance ceases to exist (post-retirement or after voluntary exit from employment).So you should buy it if - you have some specific needs that aren’t being covered by their group insurance plan, or if you are close to their retirement and their group healthcare plan will no longer be valid after retirement, or if you are planning to leave your organisation and your group insurance isn’t transferrable.Therefore, it depends on what stage of life are you in and what kind of cover are you looking for.
How Can Paz Care Help?
Pazcare, a healthcare concierge company helps employers choose the right group healthcare plan for their employees. We offer a dashboard for employers to track and manage the health insurance of their employees in real-time. We also offer an app for employees to manage their insurance end-to-end. While buying individual insurance is your employees' choice, Paz Care can help you to zero in on the group insurance plan that will ensure the physical and mental well being of your employees. Simply write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact us here.