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  • Life Insurance India - News & Updates

    • TRS Considering Introduction of Life Insurance Scheme for SCs and STs

      The TRS manifesto committee on Scheduled Caste (SC) and Scheduled Tribe (ST) welfare issues recently held a meeting on 22 October 2018 in Hyderabad to discuss and prepare the wishlist of the communities that should be included in the party manifesto. This meeting was chaired by the Deputy Chief Minister and Education Minister of Telangana, Kadiyam Srihari. The TRS election manifesto is expected to be released in the first week of November 2018. During the meeting, the committee members discussed about the introduction of special growth engine schemes for SCs and STs. These schemes are likely to be on the lines of the caste-based schemes that were launched by the Government of Telangana during its tenure for the different communities that are present in the state. They also proposed increasing the reservations for SCs and STs as per the 2011 Census, in addition to providing financial assistance to the unemployed youth without requiring any bank linkage. The committee also considered other various proposals such as the establishment of a separate corporation to oversee the overall development of tribal gram panchayats, and the introduction of Telangana life insurance scheme for SCs and STs. The Chief Minister and President of TRS, K. Chandrashekar Rao, has also tasked the committee to come up with special growth engine schemes for SCs and STs following numerous representations seeking schemes such as sheep distribution. The budget outlay of the scheme has been fixed to range between Rs.10,000 crore and Rs.15,000 crore for SCs and from Rs.6,000 crore to Rs.10,000 crore for STs. The committee members include the Finance Minister, Etela Rajender, former Minister, P Ramulu, and Chairman of TSIIC, Gyadari Balamallu along with multiple MPs such as Sitaram Naik, Banda Prakash, Pasunuri Dayakar, and Godem Nagesh. The meeting was also attended by former MLAs including Errabelli Dayakar Rao and Aroori Ramesh.

      29 October 2018

    • Estimated Growth of Life Insurance Sector Pegged at 12% to 15%

      Despite the fact that the equity market is currently in a correctional phase, the life insurance market in the country seems to be growing at a good pace. Over the coming 3 to 5 years, the Indian life insurance industry is forecast to maintain a good pace of growth, and Max Life Insurance’s Chief Operations Officer and Senior Director, V Viswanand thinks that it will grow by 12% to 15%. According to Mr. Viswanand, the move to financial assets from physical assets will likely remain while the stock market volatility will urge people to consider life insurance.

      26 October 2018

    • Life Insurance Sector Expected to Grow at 12-15%

      Even with the equity market undergoing a correctional phase, the sector of life insurance remains unrivaled as experts predict a growth percentage of 12-15%. Life insurance in India is of utmost importance with the multiple lifestyle changes that people are adapting and the uncertainties that life can throw at any given point of time.

      This growth percentage has been predicted by V Viswanand, Senior Director and Chief Operations Officer, Max Life Insurance for the next three to five years at least. Viswanand attributed this growth to factors such as financialisation of monetary savings and assets because of factors like GST and demonetisation, movement of retail savings to financial assets from physical ones like gold, property, etc. He also added that people are more likely to invest in life insurance more as there is a transition from physical assets to financial ones. Moreover, volatile stock markets and other factors are going to compel people to look in the direction of life insurance.

      The volatility in Indian stock markets is mainly caused by macro-economic conditions surfacing all over the world such as rising interest rates, dollar-rupee value, and so on. In such circumstances, a comprehensive life insurance policy will most certainly provide that element of security that is much-needed amongst the citizens of India.

      25 October 2018

    • Comparison of the Best Life Insurance Companies in India 2018

      When a person opts for a life insurance policy, he or she will have to pay a certain amount of money each month to the insurance provider as premium. In case something unfortunate happens to the policyholder in the future, the company will have to pay this coverage amount to his or her family members. This helps the policyholder provide financial support to his or her family even after his/her passing. There are numerous of life insurance providers available in the market offering various insurance plans, making it extremely difficult to choose one based on the needs and circumstances of an individual. You must always opt for a company that you trust and can rely upon, since you will have to pay a large amount of money every month in the form of premiums. Hence, it is the duty of the organization to hand over the covered amount to your family in case something unfortunate does happen to you. However, this isn’t limited only to life insurance, but to all kinds of insurance policies such as car, property, travel, health, and many more. If you are unable to decide which insurance company you should select then you see the list mentioned below to learn about the best life insurance providers in the country in 2018 based on their services, number and types of policies offered, premium-to-claim ratio, client satisfaction, and more.

      Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) of India - This is one of the oldest and most reliable life insurance companies in India. Established in 1956, this company is owned by the State and offers a plethora of life insurance plans to its customers including term plans, pension plans, endowment plans, among others. LIC is renowned for having the best claim-to-settlement ratio of more than 98% among all the insurance providers available in the country., which is above 98%.

      SBI Life Insurance - This is a joint venture between the State Bank of India (SBI) and the BNP Paribas, a banking organization based in France. With a claim-to-settlement ratio of 95% and above, this insurance provider is best known to offer a wide range of life insurance commodities to its customers.

      ICICI Prudential Life Insurance - It is one of the most popular, privately owned life insurance companies in India that offers a wide range of insurance policies to its customers. This company has a claim-to-settlement ratio of more than 96%.

      Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance - This company is known to be one of the most trusted insurance providers in India with an array of insurance plans for its customers that can be tailor made to match the requirements of each individual. This organisation works hard to resolve its clients’ issues faced, and have been known to resolve 91% of the claims.

      TATA AIA Life Insurance - A joint venture of the Tata and the AIA group, this company boasts of its happy customers as it is known to solve all or 100% of its clients’ complaints.

      24 October 2018

    • Life Insurance Corp Introduced New Pension Plan With Single Premium

      As the life expectancy of individuals continue to increase and the availability of pension plans decreases, Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) has introduced a new pension plan, Jeevan Shanti, with single premium. While addressing the media recently, the Senior Divisional Manager at LIC in Bhopal, S S Chaplot, stated that the single-premium pension plan - Jeevan Shanti - will offer guaranteed annuity to policyholders while requiring only a single premium. This plan is a non-participating, non-linked, single-premium annuity plan in which the policyholder will have an option to choose from immediate annuity or deferred annuity. This plan is available for all including the third gender. The annuity rates are guaranteed at the beginning of the policy for both immediate and deferred annuity. While this plan can be purchased via both offline and online channels, it also offers various annuity options and modes of annuity payment. However, it should be noted that once an option is selected, it cannot be changed. The minimum age requirement to be able to enrol under this plan is 30 years, and the maximum age for entry under the deferred annuity option is 79 years. This policy can be availed for self or as a joint policyholder with a grandparent, parent, child, grandchild, spouse, or sibling. Jeevan Shanti introduced by LIC is a comprehensive annuity plan that carries unique features for the benefit of the individual policyholder while offering support to the family of the policyholder, especially for handicapped dependants, as well. The frequencies available for the payment of annuity under the immediate and deferred annuity are yearly, half-yearly, quarterly, and monthly installments. The policyholders must ensure that the annuity is payable in arrears. This means that the annuity payment shall be made after 1 year, 6 months, 3 months, and 1 month starting from the date of commencement of policy for immediate annuity options or date of vesting for deferred annuity options depending on the mode of annuity payment, i.e. Yearly, Half yearly, Quarterly, and Monthly respectively.

      23 October 2018

    • Inheritance Tax Liabilities: How Life Insurance can Help Save Tax

      The realm of estate planning, specifically inheritance tax planning is a complex one to understand not only because there are changes in tax regulations on a regular basis but also understanding the many elements of personal finance and asset management becomes difficult and fairly complicated than simply comparing life insurance policies.

      The first and the most primary question that you should ask is whether or not you really need a life insurance policy to cover all your inheritance tax liabilities. Moreover, if you are married, even greater news for you as you can inherit entire estates without having to pay any tax at all. This is because your spouse’s income will also be considered while taxing.

      Whole life insurance policies are usually recommended for inheritance tax purposes as they provide a lump-sum payment to the family of the policyholder in case of their death or permanent disability. However, covering against the tax liabilities in case of estate inheritance may turn out to be more expensive because the premiums in whole life policies are relatively higher than term insurance policies.

      Another challenge that you may face while covering against inheritance tax liabilities is the constant change in financial circumstances and asset value over the period of time.

      22 October 2018

    • What is the right amount of life insurance one needs?

      Life insurance is a great financial planning tool that helps in allocating a part of your income for the future well-being of your family. But how much insurance does a person really need? The answer depends on several factors, such as:

      Loans and other such liabilities - If you have too many loans it is best to opt for greater insurance coverage.

      Educational expenses - If you are planning for your child’s future education, you should enhance your death benefit amount to serve as a safety net for the future.

      Income replacement - When selecting a life insurance policy, post-death expenses should be considered to account for liabilities that may arise from the death of the first spouse.

      Wealth transfer - Although life insurance is primarily used for paying off liabilities, creating a source of supplemental income, and supporting children’s education, it can also be used to transfer wealth to your legal heirs. If you have accumulated wealth that you would like to leave behind after your death, you may choose to buy a life insurance policy that would do the same on a tax-free basis.

      18 October 2018

    • India Post invites proposal for consultancy on setting up insurance arm

      As per official sources, India Post has invited bids for the appointment of consultant for consultancy on setting up a separate insurance services arm. A pre-bid meeting was held on 18 September 2018. The official source added that the players present for the meeting comprised of big names such as Boston Consulting Group, KPMG, Ernst and Young, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Deloitte India, and so on. Manoj Sinha, the communications minister recently said that the DoP has planned to set up an insurance firm as a special business unit within the next 2 years. Presently, the postal department is offering one of the oldest life insurance schemes. This offers a lot of benefits to the government and semi-government employees. The scheme, known as Postal Life Insurance (PLI), was introduced in 1884.

      17 October 2018

    • Reasons why a single mom should buy a life insurance policy early

      Since single moms have added responsibility on their shoulders, it is very important for them to have a life insurance policy in place. In instances of an unfortunate incident, the kid wouldn't get affected as the life insurance plan will safeguard their future. Life insurance policies such as term plans will be extremely beneficial in such a situation as the dependants can lead a secured life even in the absence of their mother. A term-insurance plan is the cheapest life insurance policy in which the buyer has to pay the premium for a long duration. However, the buyer can even opt to pay a one-time payment while buying the policy. The best thing is it gives maximum coverage to the policyholder at a lesser premium. If the buyer starts paying the premium early, the policy will be offered at a lesser rate of premium. Contrarily, if the buyer purchases the policy at a later stage of her life, she will have to pay a higher premium for the same plan. Moreover, in future, if the earnings of the policyholder increase she can either more covers such as health covers and child plans in the same insurance policy or can consider investing in another life insurance plan. So, it is wise for single mothers to start early in order to get the best benefits from their life insurance policy.

      16 October 2018

    • Permanent Life Insurance Vs Term Insurance Policies

      Permanent as well as term insurance plans have gained immense popularity over the last few years. This popularity can be attributed to factors like growing awareness among people about the importance of insurance, increasing value of insurance policies in terms of returns and profits.

      However, while discussing both the terms, people often tend to get confused. The confusion is often about the features of both the concepts. More often than not, people talk about the qualitative factors of life and term insurance policies, thereby completely disregarding the quantitative factors. However, the truth of the matter is that people these days have begun looking at life insurance policies as saving tools and nothing more. This, however, should not be the sole reason for purchasing a life insurance policy. There are various other benefits and features that life and term insurance plans offer.

      Premiums paid towards a whole or permanent life insurance policy can fundamentally be divided into three parts: the total cost of the insurance, the component of cash value, and cost of operations or administrative costs. Term plans also have a certain portion dedicated towards operational costs, however, they are relatively lower in price as compared to permanent life insurance policies. The disparity that exists between the two concepts is essentially because term plans are comparatively more simple to understand, are cost-effective, and are a pure version of a life insurance policy as they provide coverage for death only. This element is known as death benefit pay out.

      Whether you want to buy a ULIP, an endowment plan, a money back plan, or a health plan is wholly dependent on your needs and requirements of your family members. However, in order to gauge your financial needs and secure the future of your family members, consider the following tips before purchasing an insurance policy:

      Cost of the policy must be taken into consideration. Ask yourself the question ‘Do I really need this big a cover or will a small one suffice?’ If you have dependents relying on your support, but you do not want to spend a huge chunk of your income on premiums, then a term plan will suffice.

      The quantum of benefits must be measured before an insurance policy is bought.

      15 October 2018

    • Most economical life insurance policies for your age group

      Life insurance provides financial protection to your family in the event of your death in an unexpected manner. The most economical life insurance plan you can buy is term life insurance. You will only have to pay for the insurance coverage. When the policy term ends, you will not receive any maturity benefit. In case of your demise during the policy tenure, a huge amount of money is paid to your nominee.

      Here we have listed the premium rates for some term insurance plans with high claim settlement ratio. These plans provide sum assured of Rs.1 crore across various age categories.

      LIC eTerm Plan

      When the policyholder’s age is 30 years, premium is Rs.17,145.

      When the policyholder’s age is 35 years, premium is Rs.21,122.

      When the policyholder’s age is 40 years, premium is Rs.26,550.

      Max Life Insurance Online Term Plan Plus

      When the policyholder’s age is 30 years, premium is Rs.8,378.

      When the policyholder’s age is 35 years, premium is Rs.10,384.

      When the policyholder’s age is 40 years, premium is Rs.13,334.

      Aegon Life Insurance iterm Plan

      When the policyholder’s age is 30 years, premium is Rs.7,497.

      When the policyholder’s age is 35 years, premium is Rs.9,512.

      When the policyholder’s age is 40 years, premium is Rs.12,717.

      10 October 2018

    • When is the Right Time to Purchase Life Insurance?

      Most insurance agents will tell you that there is no such thing as the right time to purchase health insurance. Industry experts believe that life insurance must be purchased whenever a person becomes a subject of insurable interest, which can happen at different times for different people. For some people, the best time to purchase life insurance could be when they start earning and supporting their parents. For some others, marriage could be the perfect time as they will have to provide for their spouse. The birth of your child could also be a great time to invest in a life insurance policy. Another milestone which makes for a good time to invest in life insurance is when you attain 30 years of age. You could also purchase life insurance when you have assets such as a car or a house property. Insuring yourself will be of great benefit to your dependents who will not be adversely affected in the financial sense in case of your untimely demise.

      10 October 2018

    • Study Reveals Millennials Preference towards Life Insurance

      A large part of the millennial population prefer life insurance as the most investment-worthy financial instrument in order to meet their financial targets, according to a survey. The Survey was conducted by IndiaFirst Life Insurance and Assocham in order to examine investment and savings patterns of around 1,000 individuals aged between 18 and 35 years in different parts of Maharashtra. Household savings and simplification of insurance, as the survey was called, showed that some of the features that make life insurance so popular among millennials include high cover at relatively low premiums, easy purchase process along with speedy customer services as well as simple documentation. Around 70% of the millennial population chooses life insurance as the go-to investment instrument, while mutual funds are the next best thing at 69%, followed by recurring and fixed deposits at 64%.

      9 October 2018

    • Leadership change in Max Life from January 2019

      A leadership change in Max Life has been announced, effective from 1 January 2019. The current Chief Financial Officer and Senior Director, Prashant Tripathy, will take over the reins from the current Managing Director and Executive Vice-Chairman, Rajesh Sud. The new Managing Director will be V. Viswanand, who is currently the Chief Operations Officer and Senior Director. Rajesh Sud will remain in his role in Max Life until 31 December 2018. He will continue in Max Skill First and Max Bupa as non-executive Chairman until 31 March 2019. This is the second 5-year term for Rajesh Sud as Max Life’s Executive Vice Chairman and MD, completing 18 years in the company. The President of Max Group, Rahul Khosla, stated that Rajesh Sud had been responsible for the digital transformation that led to market leadership for the company. He had also set outstanding benchmarks in productivity, relationships, and claims delivery.

      05 October 2018

    • What to do if you’re surrendering your life insurance policy

      Although renewing your life insurance policy is always advised, if you have already decided to surrender it, there are a number of ways you can ensure that your money does not go to waste. Investing the premium amount in equity funds will deliver good returns. For example, for four endowment plans each having Rs.3 lakh coverage, with Rs.60,000 being the annual premium combined, surrendering after paying the premium for 2 years will give you a premium loss of Rs.1.2 lakh. The earning despite premium loss in 18 years would be Rs.34.04 lakh. Investing that amount in an equity fund for 18 years at 12% would give you Rs.35.25 lakh. If the policy were carried to full term, at 6%, the earning would be Rs.20.29 lakh. The surrender value can be availed if premium has been paid for 2 years for a term duration of less than 10 years and 3 years for a term duration of 10 years and more..

      4 October 2018

    • Unique Guaranteed Monthly Income Plan Launched by Tata AIA Life Insurance

      Tata AIA Life Insurance is undoubtedly one of the fastest growing insurance companies in India, in today’s date. Staying in line with its reputation of providing insurance policies with maximum benefits, Tata AIA has recently launched a Guaranteed Monthly Income Plan, a non-linked, non-participating life insurance plan.

      Under this plan, policyholders will receive guaranteed tax free monthly income for a duration that is as long as 24 years from the expiry date of the premium payment and that has a policy term of 12 years. Tata AIA Life Guaranteed Monthly Income Plan, also known as Tata AIA Life GMIP offers coverage to its policyholders for the longest recorded duration of 288 months (24 years). The most remarkable feature about the plan is that is offers guaranteed tax-free monthly income for a long duration.

      Individuals who are seeking comprehensive retirement plans or plans that would cover their children’s education or marriage, are certain to benefit from this plan. Fulfilling financial requirements on a long-term basis, you will not run out of benefits from the plan. The plan will start offering its benefits once the policy term gets over. An assured monthly income is paid out to the policyholders in the form of arrears.

      This plan is thoroughly beneficial for the protection of your loved ones and your family members.

      03 October 2018

    • How to ensure smooth life insurance claim settlement

      Buying life insurance ensures financial protection to the family of the policyholder in the event of his/her untimely death. If the policyholder is the sole breadwinner of the family, there could be legal or financial issues following the event. This can lead to challenges at the time of claim settlement. Hence, it is advisable to purchase life insurance from a reputed company with a good claim settlement ratio. Listed below are some steps that will ensure your claim is settled without any issues:

      Inform the company immediately after the incident

      Submit relevant documents

      Read through the policy documentation thoroughly

      Payouts following claim processing will be made to the nominee through ECS. The nominee is required to furnish bank account details for the same.

      01 October 2018

    • Surrender of Life Insurance Policy – What You Could Gain and Lose

      25% of the people who purchase life insurance don’t renew their plans once their first premium is paid. Moreover, surrender or premature termination of the policy following the end of the minimum lock-in will mean that the overall premiums paid will be lost and benefits will be lowered. Let’s take ULIPs for example. In case a 35-year old individual purchases Max Life’s Online Savings ULIP for a tenure of 15 years, paying a yearly premium of Rs.50,000 and earning a return rate of 8% per year for a sum assured of Rs.5 lakh. In case the person continues with the plan, he/she will receive all the benefits as promised. He/she will also get Rs.12.93 lakh as maturity benefit once the tenure of the policy ends. In case he/she discontinues the policy or surrenders it during the third year of coverage, the amount he/she will receive is Rs.1.67 lakh at the end of the lock-in period. In case the policy is surrendered in the fifth year of coverage, he/she will receive Rs.3.01 lakh. The surrender of the plan in the 10th year will see him/her get Rs.5.75 lakh.

      28 September 2018

    • Claim Intimations Will Now be Made Via Whatsapp for Bharti AXA Life Insurance Customers

      Bharti AXALife has announced the launch of its new service that permits policyholders to make claims via Whatsapp messenger. The initiative has been taken to aid a seamless claim processing procedure.

      The insurance provider has become the first among other insurance companies to settle claims through text messages.This initiative eliminates the hassle of having to visit the company’s branch to submit a claim.

      To avail the service, the nominee to the insured is required to text Bharti AXA Life on its Whatsapp number to initiate a claim. This is followed by uploading claim documents on a shared link.

      Vikas Seth, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer for Bharti AXA Life has stated that the insurance provider has already settled several claims through Whatsapp successfully and expects this new initiative to improve customer engagement and customer service in the industry.

      27 September 2018

    • What happens when you surrender a life insurance policy

      Not renewing the life insurance policy after the first premium is paid seems to be a common mistake in India. If a policy is surrendered or prematurely terminated following the minimum lock-in period, the result is loss of the money already spent on premiums or in reduction of benefits.

      There are different consequences for different types of policies. In a traditional endowment policy that has an annual premium of Rs.30,492, sum assured of Rs.5 lakh, tenure of 20 years, and guaranteed value of surrender after 3 years being 10.30% and after 10 years being 57.50%, the entire premium will have to be forgone if the policy is allowed to lapse before three premiums or even if just one premium has been paid and then stopped. In a unit-linked insurance plan with a yearly premium of Rs.50,000, with a 15-year tenure, sum assured of Rs.5 lakh, and 8% p.a. assumed rate of return, if the policy is surrendered or discontinued in the third year, before the lock-in of five years expires, then post the lock-in period, Rs.1.67 lakh will be paid after surrender charges are deducted. In a pure protection term insurance, with an annual premium of Rs.10,000, and a tenure of 25 years for a cover of Rs.1 crore, if the premium is discontinued before the end of the paying term, then the policy is terminated after the end of the grace period.

      26 September 2018

    • Sachin Tendulkar Brand Ambassador for IDBI Federal Life Insurance

      Sachin Tendulkar will be the face of IDBI Federal Life Insurance. This was announced by Vighnesh Shahane, CEO. He stated that the cricketer’s vision of a healthy India was aligned with the company’s mission to inspire the people of the country to adopt a healthy lifestyle for a brighter future.

      Sachin Tendulkar has been the brand ambassador for IDBI Federal Marathon. He stated that this new partnership would be more than just promoting physical fitness but financial fitness too. The company offers a wide range of financial products to corporates and individuals. These range from retirement solutions to protection and wealth management. Its net profit for FY18 was Rs.101 crore. As part of its commitment to nurturing sports in the country, the ‘Young Champs Initiative’ was launched to identify badminton talent across India.

      25 September 2018

    • 3 Important Essentials of Life Insurance

      September is officially regarded as ‘Life Insurance Awareness Month’ and is, therefore, a good time to re-evaluate your insurance needs and requirements.

      No matter at what stage of life you are currently at, owning a comprehensive life cover will go a long way in protecting and securing your family, in case of your absence. Several employers provide group insurance policies and coverage to their employees, however, these will not suffice on a long-term basis and the returns are marginal.

      Taking important steps to secure your family’s future while at the same time taking risks in life are a few of the many things that can be achieved through a life insurance policy. Whatever the money provided by the insurer is put to use for, life insurance guarantees peace of mind and safeguards your family’s interests during difficult times.

      Mentioned below are 3 essentials of life insurance that must be kept in mind:

      Start Early: A smart approach would be to invest in a life insurance policy as early in life as possible and rethink your life decisions at a later stage (whether you want to continue with the same policy or not). This is because premiums are generally cheaper when policies are purchased at a young age. Therefore, a 20-something will pay relatively less premiums in comparison with a 40-something.

      Purchase Individual Cover: The life insurance coverage offered in a group policy will most certainly not suffice in the long run. Purchasing an individual cover with customised benefits will help ensure that your family is well protected and can conveniently tide through difficult times.

      Safeguard Loved Ones: A family tends to be at its most vulnerable state when it loses a sole breadwinner or a primary wage earner. Hence, death benefit of a life insurance policy will effectively reduce the financial damage caused by the death of the insured, and help pay off debts, if any.

      24 September 2018

    • Importance of Life Insurance for Business Owners

      Owning a life insurance policy is crucial not only for a salaried employee, but for self-employed professionals as well. And more often than not, it’s the latter that ends up entailing the benefits of a life cover more than the former.

      No matter if your business is big or small, owning a comprehensive life cover must be at the top of your priority list. Mentioned below are a few conditions wherein purchasing a life insurance for your business will certainly come in handy:

      Death of a key employee: Most insurance companies offer a certain policy known as key-person insurance wherein upon the death of that individual, a death benefit is provided. If you have the most important assets of your business insured, the lump sum provided by the insurer will essentially help you tide over a rough period of time or even bolster your business economically.

      Equalisation of estate: You may have children who are involved in your business and those who aren’t. In such a scenario, determining who to leave the business shares might be a bit of a problem. Since one child is involved and the second isn’t, they will have different objectives and purposes in life. Therefore, it makes more sense to purchase an insurance as it will provide a lump sum benefit to your child who is not involved in the business while the shares of your business can be left to the one who is actively involved in the business operations.

      Covering taxes on death: Whatever taxes you have due, a life insurance policy will essnetially help your executor pay off your final tax bill.

      Providing for your Beneficiary: If you are shareholder in your company, it only makes sense to purchase a life insurance policy as it will offer security and protection to the surviving inheritors of the company. The lump sum provided by the insurer can also help boost your business financially.

      21 September 2018

    • Importance of Life Insurance for Millennials

      The total number of youngsters living in the country is going to increase to 45 crore by the year 2020. As a result, the patterns involving their economic status will also undergo a tremendous alteration. Most millennials in India do not believe in securing their future, rather they spend on accomplishing their immediate needs of travel, purchasing gadgets, investing in cutting-edge technology, and so on.

      To understand the importance of life insurance in the lives of millennials, one needs to pay close attention to their behaviors, to carefully analyse their spending behavioral aspects. Life insurance is of utmost importance, whether it is for a millennial or for an elderly, however, the sooner you invest in a life insurance policy, better will be the returns.

      In most cases, the importance of life insurance is realised only when there is a sudden occurrence of death or disability in a family. To avoid situations like this and to tide over the then financial losses, a life insurance policy comes in handy as it provides a lump sum amount to the family of the insured in the event of his death.

      For a generation that believes in doing things in ‘one go’, having a comprehensive life insurance policy is always the safest bet.

      20 September 2018

    • The Essence of Life Insurance

      The month of September is universally celebrated as Life Insurance Awareness Month. While many of us are aware of the importance of being insured through life insurance investment (thanks to the digital media), not many of us are familiar with the ways in which life insurance can fulfill our needs and requirements.

      Life insurance policies can play a giant role in assisting your family achieve some major financial goals in case of your absence. Moreover, if you are the sole breadwinner of your family, investing in a comprehensive life cover becomes all the more important. The kind of goals that a life insurance policy can help you achieve are:

      Assisting your family in maintaining the same standard of living in case of your demise or disability - If you have dependent parents, a spouse, and children to provide for, you must purchase a life insurance policy to secure their future. If the inflow of a steady income were to stop in the future, the life cover will help them sail through the financial losses.

      Assisting your children in their future plans, like education - Even if you are not planning to pay for your child’s education with your income, investing in a life insurance policy will ensure that a large portion of that burden is lessened as it will help your children get some vocational training or education in case of your absence.

      Assists your family in debt payment - If you have a car or a home loan that you are yet to the pay debt for, a life insurance policy can be made use of to achieve the same, in case of your demise.

      19 September 2018

    • Reasons for the rejection of your life insurance claim

      In case you are considering the purchase of a life insurance policy, you should be aware of the fact that majority of the errors creep in when you fill up the proposal form. The probability of your life insurance claim getting rejected is greater if you have furnished incomplete or incorrect information to the insurance company. The life insurance policy will be issued based on the details in the proposal form. Hence, the information provided in the form will be part of the terms and conditions.

      It is highly recommended to do a thorough check of the proposal form after it is completely filled up. Some of the common reasons for the rejection of a life insurance claim include:

      Concealing medical issues or pre-existing diseases

      Delay in claim intimation

      Policy lapse

      18 September 2018

    • Optimum Usage of Life Insurance Policy

      Most of the times, most Indians purchase a life insurance policy in order to have a steady investment option in life, however, this is not the right approach to take. According to a report released recently, one-fourth of the deposits that people make towards paying their due premiums towards life insurance policies go to waste. The premiums that are paid towards investment policies are the ones that are wasted on a regular basis, thus incurring huge amounts of losses for the country and the Government.

      This frequently occurring phenomenon is known as the persistency ratio in the sector of life insurance, which essentially takes into account the proportion of policyholders who continue to fund their insurance product over and beyond the initial few years. In the field of life insurance, at least 25% of the total policyholders have been reported to have dropped out of their policies because of dissatisfaction with the existing terms and conditions.

      If you surrender your life insurance policy within the first year itself, you run a huge risk of loss since the surrender value is not provided in such a short span of time, moreover, your insurer gets to keep all the peripheral costs including commissions, upfront in the first year itself.

      17 September 2018

    • Canara HSBC Oriental Bank of Commerce Life Insurance to Wipe Out Losses

      The accumulated loss of Canara HSBC Bank is evidently wiping out all of its losses. The total loss incurred till date is Rs.160 crore which the insurance company is planning to get rid off and earn profits to clear off whatever loss the company had incurred in the past.

      “We are in a very strong growth trajectory,” said Mathur. He also added that the insurance company is planning to integrate its trajectory of growth of the preceding years in its business operations for the current year. The company has at a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of over 35% in the past three years in individual business. The insurance company’s total business recordings stood at Rs.2,781 crore for financial year 2017-18, while the new profits stood at Rs.818 crore.

      Mathur was further reported to have said that the company has a solvency ratio of 370% which evidently makes it reliable to deal with. He also emphasised on the importance of funding through internal accruals for its expansion plans, while also stating that capital infusion is not a requirement anymore. The last time the insurance company received capital infusion was six years ago. The CSR or claim settlement ratio of the insurer is 98% and the persistency ratio is more than 80%, according to the company’s Managing Director.

      14 September 2018

    • How to Locate a Lost Life Insurance Policy

      Life insurance for Indians is more like an investment product wherein the investor receives a lump sum amount of money after the term of the policy. However, this approach is not reasonable as the purpose of life insurance is defeated entirely if you start looking at it like from an investment perspective and not from an insurance perspective.

      Life insurance, undoubtedly is one of the most reliable products to invest in however if you do not intimate your family members or spouse about the said investment, it might go to complete waste.

      If you have had a relative in the family who owned a life insurance policy but missed out on letting anybody know about the same, then you may have set yourself up for a daunting task of finding the lost policy. As of now, India does not have a national database of all life insurance policies, purchased or expired. Hence, the process of tracking a lost policy becomes increasingly hassled and tedious as you do not know where to start from.

      However, a little sleuthing can go a long way. By looking in the right corners and contacting the right people and executives, you may be able to trace your steps to the policy that has now become past. Given below are a few steps that can be followed while looking for a lost life insurance policy:

      Search for documents that are insurance-related: Check and recheck in all the possible places that the policy document might be in. This includes files, folders, safety deposit boxes, store houses, and so on.

      Get in touch with the deceased family member’s financial advisors: Any attorneys from the present or past, investment advisors, accountants, business insurance brokers, agents, bankers, may be contacted in order to obtain information about the lost life insurance policy.

      Look at any other policy that the deceased may have owned: At the time of purchase of the policy, the application of other policies are attached to the purchased policy’s document. Therefore, if you are able to trace any other policy that your family member used to own, tracking the lost policy may become easy.

      12 September 2018

    • LIC Predicts a 75 Billion First Premium Income from the Eastern Region

      What has come as a huge news for the insurance sector, India’s state-owned insurance company Life Insurance Corporation of India has recently announced their target of gaining an income worth Rs.75 billion from payment of premiums only. During the 2018-19 financial quarter, premiums paid by the eastern region will supposedly come down to Rs.75 billion, which is a commendable achievement on LIC’s front.

      According to the Regional Manager of Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC), the aim to grow has been placed at 20%, i.e., LIC’s premium will evidently witness a 20% growth. During the quarter of April-August, the first premium income of the eastern region was recorded to be Rs.21.65 billion which is flat as compared to the number that was recorded in the previous year.

      Till the period of 31 August, 2018, the group premium income that was collected from the eastern region stood at Rs.20.5 billion. It has also been announced that the eastern region ranks at the top in terms of purchasing the maximum number of policies and in case of first premium income.

      11 September 2018

    • 5 Insurance Products that Senior Citizens Should Avoid

      At times, it is possible to purchase an insurance policy and then realise that you do not need it or that it does not benefit you in any way. If you have entered your retirement age just now or sometime back, keep in mind that there are some insurance products you need to avoid. A few of them are mentioned below, read on to find more details on why you need to avoid these products.

      Unintentionally-purchased policies: It is possible that you were sold a policy without you being aware of it. Since it is not required, you can always return the plan. Check for the free-look period and return the plan before the period ends.

      Guaranteed returns policies: If you are not planning to work after retirement, a guaranteed-returns policy is not for you. The premium for such policies are high and the term is over 10 years.

      Single-premium policies: Sometimes single-premium plans could be mis-sold as fixed deposits with better returns and tax benefits. The premium for such policies could get quite high due to the age factor.

      Unit-linked policies: These policies cost a high premium as they are invested in mutual funds. Usually, there is a lock-in period of 5 years for such plans, so it possible that you cannot surrender the policy if needed during that period.

      Insurance policies at banks: Insurance policies sold at banks are due to the tie-ups between bancassurance and insurance companies. It is possible for you to be sold a policy that you really do not need.

      If you are looking for steady income after retirement, then you need to avoid these policies. There are other life insurance products that can be quite beneficial for you.

      7 September 2018

    • Important Things to Consider While Purchasing a Life Insurance Policy

      A life insurance policy can be quite beneficial when you pick the right plan. There are multiple plans available so it is essential to do research to find out which plan is suitable for you. The main factors you need to consider while purchasing a life insurance policy are:

      1. The amount of coverage you require

      First, you need to determine the coverage you require. This would include sufficient coverage for your family members as well. You also need to consider not just the present but the future needs as well. So, it would be wise to calculate the sufficient amount of coverage based on your income, financial standing and family members.

      2. The coverage period which is beneficial for you

      Second, when it comes to the coverage period, you need to choose between term insurance and whole life insurance. Term insurance provides coverage for a limited period of time but the premium is less expensive. Whole life insurance covers you for life but the premium is expensive when compared with term insurance. So, you need to decide which type of insurance works better for you.

      3. The suitable life insurance plan

      Third, you need to choose the right plan that covers all your insurance requirements. The plan must offer coverage amount that you require and offer the coverage period which is suitable for you. Such a plan would be the ideal plan that will meet all your insurance needs.

      The key to finding the right life insurance policy is to compare multiple quotes from multiple insurers. With some research and effort, you can understand the options you have and take a right decision.

      5 September 2018

    • Basic Life Insurance Policies and their Types

      The Economic Survey, 2018, showed that the life insurance penetration in India is 2.27%, which is slightly lower in comparison with the worldwide insurance penetration which is recorded at 3.47%. Although the 2.27% is slightly good when compared to previous years, India is still lagging behind other nations. There are five basic kinds of health insurance policies that are growing increasingly popular in India. They are whole life plans, unit linked insurance plans, endowment plans, and pension plans. Each plan has its own features and benefits. Endowment plans are a blend of life insurance and investment opportunities. Pension plans are great investment options for those who are nearing their retirement. Unit linked plans are those that offer tax benefits and also provide insurance coverage, and whole life plans are the most basic kind of insurance plans that offer coverage to individuals until they attain 99 or 100 years of age.

      4 September 2018

    • Life Insurance: Things You Didn’t Know

      Even though the penetration rate of life insurance has bettered over the period of time, the sector remains to be one of the most misunderstood ones among its peers. A phenomenon known as ‘buyer’s regret’ has especially been common with life insurance policy buyers. In this phenomenon, you basically pay your premiums diligently up until a certain point, after which you realise that maybe the plan you bought isn’t the most effective.

      In order to impart some amount of clarity to the prevailing confusion about life insurance, given below are a few things that you might not know about life insurance:

      Sum assured does not always equate to death or maturity benefit: The most common mistake people tend to make with life insurance is placing the concepts of death benefit or maturity benefit and sum assured on the same table. This, however, holds some amount of truth upto a certain degree. In most traditional life insurance policies, the components of maturity benefit and death benefit are elements of the total sum assured and they usually vary between 80% and 125% of the sum assured amount. Be sure to read the policy document carefully before purchasing a life insurance policy.

      Traditional life insurance policies can only be surrendered after a timeframe of three years: Traditional life insurance plans such as ULIPs or endowment plans are illiquid in nature, which essentially means that their potential of being surrendered only becomes feasible after the insured has diligently paid his premiums continuously for three years. This means that if you want to surrender your endowment plan you will have to pay the premiums for the same for at least three years.

      3 September 2018

    • Additional Life Cover Along with Loans

      While car loans, home loans, etc. do come with flexible tenures and handsome interest rates, the capacity of paying a loan back completely depends on the status of income of the borrower, his dependents, and his existence.

      In case you, being the borrower of the loan, pass away without settling the total loan amount, the provider of the loan will have the full right to foreclose your property, and your family in turn might be rendered completely helpless. To deal with a scenario like this, a term or whole life cover will prove to be immensely beneficial. If you have invested in a comprehensive life insurance policy, your family can make use of the death or the maturity benefit (in case you survive) to repay the loan amount.

      Apart from paying the loan amount back to the provider, a life insurance policy also makes sure that there is sufficient financial coverage for the entire family after demise of the policyholder. It helps tide over any financial losses that the family may have incurred during that time period.

      31 August 2018

    • ULIPs are best-in-class as far as charges are concerned: Tarun Chugh

      Issues with Unit Linked Insurance Plans have always been a deterrent in the past for people buying life insurance, said the MD and CEO of Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance, Tarun Chugh. But he is of the opinion that the new ULIPs are highly beneficial in terms of charges.

      An online survey at the insurer’s website has revealed that the life goals of men and women in a specific age group are alike. Most people who participated in the survey did not require just protection, but also the ability to enjoy life.

      The improved transparency in ULIPs, reduction in misselling, and the ability to switch without having to pay long-term capital gains tax are positive trends in the industry. Bajaj Allianz has also observed a three-fold increase in the premium of ULIPs off late.

      30 August 2018

    • Single Premium Plans: To Buy or Not to Buy

      A recent hike in the sell of single premium policies is a major indicator that such plans have gained momentum and immense popularity amongst masses in India.

      During the period of April - June, 2018, market officials and professionals reported a growth of 54.75% y-o-y in the segment of individual single premium policies. Regular premium businesses only reported a hike of 3.84% during the same timeframe.

      Many professionals have attributed this sudden likeness for single premium plans to rising interest rates. Mentioned below are a few elements that you must take into consideration before purchasing single premium policies:

      Single premium policies are comparatively more expensive. People tend to purchase simple term plans by paying minimum premiums. It is advisable to compare the rates before investing.

      Owing to a high upfront premium, single premium policies might not be a feasible investment idea for salaried individuals. Salaried individuals are known to make better profits and gain better returns by servicing regular premium policies.

      Life insurance professionals tend to dangle the tax benefits in insurance policies, to an extent where purchasing a life insurance policy means saving on tax liabilities.

      One must invest in any financial product, be it a single premium policy, only after having read the policy documentcarefully.

      29 August 2018

    • Single Parents and Life Insurance Policies: Their Importance

      A comprehensive life insurance policy acts like the most reliable safety net in one’s life. Moreover, if you are a single parent taking care of your offspring - right from their sustenance needs to their education and marriage, owning a comprehensive life insurance policy will only make your life easier.

      However, in order to do so, you must possess adequate knowledge about the very sector of life insurance, its operations, premiums, and so on. Let us take a look at some of the most important things that single parents must be aware of before purchasing a life cover for their children:

      Understanding the math behind life insurance premiums and total coverage: While a majority of the population feels that a young couple with children has to own a life cover, only a handful feel the same way about single parents and their need to own a life insurance policy. Moreover, since a single parent has all the responsibilities (financial, house duties) on himself, it is obvious that his/her liabilities will also be increasingly higher. Therefore, a thorough analysis of one’s expenses and total liabilities must be conducted before a life insurance policy is purchased.

      How life insurance operates: If anyone is likely to be at a loss after your death, a life insurance policy in that case is a must for you. The primary objective of a life insurance policy is to provide financial protection to the family of the policyholder.

      28 August 2018

    • SBI Life Insurance Office Instituted in Vijayawada

      A new regional office (RO) was recently inaugurated by State Bank of India Life Insurance Company in Sri Hari Towers, KP Nagar, for the Andhra East region of India.

      The inauguration of the new office was carried out by MD and CEO, Mr. Sanjeev Nautiyal. Apart from Mr. Nautiyal, officials present in the ceremony were Mani Palvesan, Chief General Manager, M Anand, President, Zone II, SBI Life, Ganesh V, Regional Director, Andhra Pradesh Region, SBI Life.

      On the special event of the launch, the CEO and MD said that health adversities caused by lifestyle habits have increased at a tremendous rate over the last few years. This is the reason why awareness and perception about insurance has undergone drastic changes, wherein people do not view insurance products as mere tax saving tools anymore, but as holistic solutions to complex healthcare problems.

      27 August 2018

    • Life Insurance Bonds to be Given to Farmers in India

      One day before India celebrated its 72nd Independence, the farmers of the country received a little something from the State Government.

      In an effort to provide increased guaranteed financial protection and coverage to that population of India that is responsible for people’s sustenance all across the country, Agriculture Minister P. Srinivas Reddy has provided comprehensive life insurance bonds to more than 27 lakh farmers in the country. These bonds were distributed amongst the farmers between 6 August and 13 August.

      Furthermore, P. Srinivas Reddy also said an amount of Rs.600 crore has already been paid to the Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) as premiums to these life insurance bonds. For those farmers who still do not possess knowledge about the prevalent scheme, are required to consult/visit agriculture extension officers for the purpose of enrollment by 13 August 2018.

      The insurance scheme designed by the State Government is a huge step towards imparting a sense of security to the most vulnerable section of the society. Ever since the concept of insurance has undergone evolution, its penetration percentage in India has not been that high. With measures and schemes like these, it is possible for an underprivileged Indian farmer to receive benefits similar to that of a middle-class working individual.

      The farmers, however, are required to pay a bare minimum amount for paddy insurance by the end of the month of August, 2018.

      24 August 2018

    • Difference Between Traditional and Non-Traditional Policies

      Traditional participating insurance policies might not be the best bet for an investor if he/she is looking for certainty in terms of returns and proceeds.

      Traditional policies: These are the ones that have their primary investment in bonds are considered to be low-risk investment instruments. Investors of traditional life insurance policies receive a guarantee in some form, that might be partial or complete. These investors also receive a partial or complete guarantee of cash flow over the policy term.

      Further, traditional policies can either be participating or non-participating in nature. Where participating policies are concerned, they come with a certain degree of uncertainty, declared bonuses, and partial guarantee. Moneyback and endowment plans are the most common examples of traditional participating policies.

      Where traditional non-participating policies are concerned, the benefits are guaranteed at the inception and there are no declared bonuses. Participating policies are highly recommended to those who have an inclination towards bonuses, and non-participating are meant for those who want guaranteed certainties. Traditional insurance policies are highly suitable to people who have a low-risk appetite.

      Non-traditional policies like unit-linked insurance plans, on the other hand, incorporate the components of both insurance and investment. In a typical non-traditional policy (like ULIP), a portion of the premium is invested in products such as equity, debt, and money market funds. As compared to traditional life insurance policies, non-traditional policies are big on their returns, guaranteeing around 12-15% returns on equity investments, 8-9% on debt instruments.

      23 August 2018

    • Is Income a Determining Factor While Purchasing Life Insurance Policies?

      One must choose a life insurance policy after taking multiple elements into consideration. One of the most important elements is a person’s income and how much they can spend on monthly/yearly/half-yearly premiums. One also has to make sure that the sum assured one chooses is 10 times than the current expenses. This can be done through in-depth analysis of future expenses such as pending financial debts, children’s education and marriage, daily expenses, and so on.

      A few important factors are elucidated below:

      Current expenditure: The primary objective of a life insurance policy is to provide financial security to the family of the life assured in case of an unfortunate event. A sure shot way of calculating future expenses is adding all the current expenses and multiply them by 12. The expenses that one should consider herein are children’s education fees, premiums paid by family members collectively, and so on.

      Income multiplier: Multiplying one’s income with their age group is an effective way to determine the estimation of sum assured amount that one should go for. In this method, one is required to subtract their total expenditure from the net income earned, and after that simply make use of the multiplication factor.

      Other liabilities and assets: Investment in houses and properties in considered to be highly fruitful where returns are concerned. A high proportion of the Indian population take home loans, in order to purchase a house/property of their choice. Repayment of such loans is a financial liability that one must take into consideration while calculating expenses.

      22 August 2018

    • High upfront commissions in life insurance products

      An IRDAI working committee is looking at the possibility of offering level commissions for the entire tenure of a life insurance policy. This is in contrast to the high upfront commissions that are provided to distributors for some policies at the moment. This is expected to improve the persistency ratio of life insurance products and will bring down the statistics of mis-selling to a large extent.

      High upfront commissions are seen in traditional life insurance products. The commission paid for the first year is usually between 35% and 40%. It reduces in the following years as well. In the case of unit-linked insurance plans, the commission given to agents is 6-7% in the initial year. Then, it gradually reduces. It is found that ULIPs purchased offline have tough competition from online ULIPs as there is a significant difference in the cost of these policies.

      It is found that high upfront commissions and low renewal commissions encourage distributors to influence customers in purchasing new policies as opposed to staying invested through their existing policies. This, effectively, erodes the value of the entire investment itself. A level commission structure is expected to mitigate the ill-effects of the agents’ incentive and improve persistency.

      In this regard, opting for a term insurance policy for the individual’s insurance needs and a mutual fund investment for savings is the best option.

      21 August 2018

    • Life Insurance Product Regulation Moving at a Fast Pace

      A new set of product regulations is all set to embark on a journey with the life insurance industry. The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) has recently instituted a full-functional working group to handle matters in this regard.

      A committee had been established by IRDAI in the year 2017 to keep a strict check on the regulations revolving around life insurance. The subsequent report from this committee was submitted in December 2017. To take things forward and mull over the recommendations made by the committee, IRDAI has now set up the full-fledged working group.

      The proposed report from the committee in 2017 displayed recommendations revolving around life insurance products. The report had evidently proposed major changes in the operations of the life insurance industry which includes self-regulation efforts on the insurance provider’s end, higher surrender values, flexible investment options in insurance and loans against plans such as ULIP and endowment plans.

      In addition to this, the committee had also recommended a level playing field operating in the sector of health insurance for life insurance providers who are at par with general insurance providers and independent health insurance.

      20 August 2018

    • What Happens if the Nominee of a Life Insurance Policy is Not Defined?

      In the world of life insurance, nominee is that person who receives the death benefit (Death Benefit Sum Assured) from the insurance company in case the insured/policyholder passes away untimely. According to the general rule of thumb, whenever an individual decides to purchase a life insurance policy, he/she will be required to choose a certain beneficiary or nominee who would receive the accumulated money from the insurance provider.

      A nominee can be anybody from the family of the policyholder. Choosing a nominee usually rests on the insured person himself. The beneficiary could be his/her wife, children, some distant relative, and so on. The law, however dictates that where a nominee is a trustee, he/she is not the owner of the assets owned by the insured. In simpler terms, a nominee is like a caretaker of the assets. He/she will be required to give away the assets to the legal heir if the insured has appointed one. A legal heir is someone who is mentioned in the insured individual’s will.

      However, if the insured does not have a will, then allocation of assets is dependent on the law of succession.

      Nomination is essentially the right to receive, whereas the ownership rights are with the legal heirs, in most cases. Therefore, if an insured individual does not have a nominee for his/her policy, the assets will directly be transferred to the legal heir.

      17 August 2018

    • Factors Determining the Size of a Life Insurance Cover

      If an individual spends Rs.1 crore on a term insurance policy, and at a later stage gets married and procreates, he/she might feel that the cover is insufficient. This is because future expenses are always going to surpass the present ones. All expenditures of the future will have to be taken into consideration before one decides how much insurance to purchase.

      One of the many expenses that a policyholder needs to consider is loans and financial debts. One has to ensure that a chunk of one’s income is always saved up in order to pay off home loans, education loans, and so on.

      Following are some of the determining factors of a life insurance cover:

      Age

      Dependents

      Yearly income

      Household expenditure on a yearly basis

      Loans and other financial debts

      Children’s education and marriage

      Emergency needs of family members

      Assets and other liabilities

      Existing value of the life cover

      16 August 2018

    • Life insurance companies will witness moderate growth in business in the first quarter of FY19

      Life insurers are expected to witness moderate growth in the first quarter of the financial year 2018-19 due to higher base and cyclicality. The growth is expected to continue in the subsequent quarters based on high penetration potential and structural modifications. The new business premium (NBP) is based on a hike in retail growth. The monthly business figures indicate an increase in the protection products offered by businesses.

      The consolidated net revenue of Bajaj Finserv will be increasing by 27% year-on-year in Q1FY19. SBI Life Insurance is expecting 20% hike in net premium income based on single premium growth and persistency improvement for renewals. ICICI Prudential Life Insurance will be witnessing a reduction in its new business premium based on higher base the previous year. The renewal premium may remain stable with balanced persistence.

      14 August 2018

    • IDBI Federal Life stake no more on sale after the takeover of IDBI Bank

      The stakes of IDBI Federal Life Insurance which were for sale as IDBI Bank required the capital, are not on sale anymore after the takeover by Life Insurance Corp. of India (LIC). As per the terms of this acquisition, IDBI Federal LI will have to infuse Rs.13,000 crore in the IDBI Bank. Since this company will be on the block after the clearance of the Union Cabinet to collect 51% stake in IDBI Bank Ltd, there is no chance to have the IDBI Federal LI in the market in the coming days. Earlier IDBI Bank had the plan of selling its entire stake of 48% in the joint venture for around Rs.3,000 crore.

      13 August 2018

    • Mutual Funds Offering Life Covers: Are They Sustainable?

      The Union Budget 2018 has brought in a wave of new changes in the sector of finance and has provided the underprivileged with enormous options of investment and other opportunities.

      The Finance Act of 2017 established a long-term capital gains tax on equities. Therefore, amongst investors and peers, unit-linked insurance plans (ULIPs) have become a popular product that one can invest in. Several insurance experts and insurance providers for this reason have commenced pushing out this product (ULIPs) in the market in a hope that taxation will not be a matter of concern for investors.

      With respect to this, mutual fund organisations have started emailing investors saying that in case they (the investors) choose to invest via the Systematic Investment Plan (SIP), they will be eligible for a free life insurance cover. For those who do not understand the nitigrities surrounding the very concept, a free cover is what will be offered along with SIP investments one makes in mutual funds.

      However, there are multiple terms and conditions operating in this regard. On the maximum cover, a cap is placed and the investor will be required to complete a minimum tenure in order to extract benefits from the insurance cover. It has been designed in a way that the more you invest via SIP and the longer your investment is, the more benefits will you be able to extricate.

      10 August 2018

    • Life Insurance Protection Policies Expected to Drive New Premiums

      A 9% growth in single premiums have been reported by private insurers in the month of June, 2018. This percentage stood at 4% in the previous year, hence the hike has come as a huge sigh of relief. The financial year 2019 is expected to be groundbreaking for unit-linked insurance plans although the existing focus on protection businesses will continue to drive the current value of new business for large players in the market.

      Improved Growth in the Indian Economy

      The APE of the private sector had gone up by 12% on a year-on-year basis in June 2018. This in turn resulted in a 6% growth on a year-on-year basis for the first quarter of the Financial year 2019. Moderation in the capital markets along with a tremendous hike in the interest rates will most likely hinder the inflows to the financial savings of capital markets. In the sector of mutual funds, equity inflows have undergone a negative hike o Rs 10,700 crore from `13,200-13,600 crore in the preceding two months.

      Most established insurance providers are gradually balancing their portfolios and are therefore incorporating more and more traditional insurance policies under their name. Additionally, most of the large and more established businesses have their focus on the high margin protection business, which will drastically enhance the component of VNB.

      9 August 2018

    • Factors that Help Determine Life Insurance Cover

      If you are purchasing a term insurance policy that is worth Rs.1 crore, you must do so after taking into account all the expenses that will be increased in the future. For example, if, you get married after the purchase of the policy, your dependents increase in number and so do your responsibilities. Now, this cover of Rs.1 crore seems like nothing in comparison to the financial requirements you might have 10 years down the line.

      To cover the difference in your finance 10 years later, you will be required to invest in a larger cover right now. Hence, if you buy a cover of Rs.2 crore, it might be a reasonable amount and approach to secure the future of your family and yourself. India still remains to be the only country with a maximum population that is uninsured. In fact, in a country such as India, the importance of insurance policies are rarely highlighted and there is very little awareness amongst people about the same.

      Even though pure protection term insurance policies have garnered immense attention from people for their sheer feature of cost-effectiveness, the average Indian household is still susceptible to financial bankruptcy in case any unfortunate event befalls them. Insurance experts and financial gurus have always advocated the need to set an estimation one’s financial goals. This means that one must analyse the amount of cover one needs based on the lifestage requirements arising at that point of time. A person must plan in a way that the term insurance policy lasts till the retirement period of the policyholder.

      Moreover, one-time expenses such as children’s education, marriage, and so on must also be kept into consideration while purchasing a life insurance policy (irrespective of whether it is a whole life cover or a term plan).

      8 August 2018

    • Purchasing Life Insurance Policy: Choosing the Right Insurer

      In order to maximise financial returns and ensure that your family members are safe even after your demise, purchasing a life insurance policy with add-on benefits is the right approach to take. If you purchase a life insurance policy at an early stage, you will not only be able to protect your family from unforeseen costs but also pay off any existing debts.

      With the establishment of numerous life insurance policy providers in India, choosing the right one has become ever more difficult. The sure shot way of gauging a life insurer’s potential as a company is to glance through his/her claim settlement ratio. HIgher the ratio, better are the chances of the insurer being reliable and settling claims when needed the most. The insurance company must also be able to settle early claims as swiftly as possible.

      Mentioned below are a few elements that one must ponder before choosing an insurance provider:

      Early claims: The insurer must have a decent track record in this regard. More than 80% of claims must have been settled by the insurer within a period of 15 days. This means that the insurer is proactive when it comes to claim settlement.

      Lapse ratio: This component essentially helps an individual understand the trend of insurance firms such as which life insurance is currently high in demand. This ratio also helps one decipher which insurance provider to go with.

      7 August 2018

    • Future Generali India Life Insurance Launches New Applications

      With the launch of two digital initiatives Chatbot Reva and Whatsapp for Service, Future Generali Life Insurance is the first ever entity to launch an application of such huge capacity in the insurance space.

      These initiatives will primarily provide real-time solutions to the queries of people by means of natural language processing and artificial intelligence. Therefore, finding a solution to any insurance-related query will henceforth be just a click of a button away. The ‘Whatsapp for Service’ is essentially an initiative that will focus on the providing a range of multiple services to the consumers including a facility wherein they will be able to access their policies on the application. Other activities that one can accomplish on this platform are Aadhaar or PAN document verification at the time of policy renewal, receiving alerts and other important notifications, document collection, and so on.

      Robotics Enabled Virtual Assistant (REVA) is essentially like a guide that will assist policyholders in the future during their purchase of the policy, or during the policy enquiry process. REVA incorporates in its system the natural language conversion feature by means of which it is able to assist people on the portal.

      These initiatives are considered to be absolute breakthroughs in the sector of insurance.

      6 August 2018

    • Annual Premium Equivalent (APE) Growth Predicted by Life Insurers

      In June, 2018, the life insurance industry evidently reported a flat premium growth as the APE percentage stood at 4.1% on a year-on-year basis at Rs.4,733.2 crore. However, a recent data revealed contrasting facts. It displayed that the private players in the life insurance sector posted an 8.9% APE growth whereas Life Insurance Corporation of India or LIC experienced a 1.3% dip in its growth.

      In the previous year, APE growth of multiple players in the life insurance sector was in double digits. Compared to that, this year’s growth has come as an unpleasant surprise at the APE growth has significantly come to a halt. The report that revealed this statistic also stated that growth in Q1FY19 has been relatively soft, as compared to other financial years. Industry gurus and professionals hold the opinion that business operations are usually slow and stagnant during the first few months of a new financial year.

      Data from the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) revealed that the premiums of the first year in life insurance companies took a hike by 14.83% at Rs 16,611.57 crore against Rs 14,466.13 crore during the same period, in the preceding year.

      3 August 2018

    • Life insurance sector's collection increased by 10.78% in Q1

      The life insurance sector in India witnessed an increase in their collections by double digits in the June quarter. This premium increase in the collections is attributed to the enhanced focus of the insurance companies on the single premium products. According to the recent data released by the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA), the collections increased by 10.78% to Rs.33,166 crores in the first quarter of the year compared to that of the previous year. While the premiums of the Life Insurance Corporations increased by 6.20%, the collection of the overall private sector is registered to be 21.7%. HDFC Life Insurance, Tata AIA, Max Life, and Birla Sun Life are among the private life insurance companies who posted substantial growth. However as per the IRDA data, the ICICI Prudential Life with 11.63% market share grabbed the position of the largest achiever in the individual regular new premium income section.

      2 August 2018

    • Protection Life Insurance Policies Expected to Drive New Premiums

      The private sector operating in the domain of life insurance has recently reported a growth of 9% in their individual premium amounts in the month of June 2018. This percentage has seen a substantial hike from the figure reported in May 2018 (which was 4%).

      Financial gurus and experts from all over the country have been saying that Financial Year 2019 will be fruitful for Unit-Linked Plans although the focus given to protection business will remain to increase value of the new business (VNB) for large players.

      Capital market moderation and a significant increase in the interest rates is said to substantially reduce the intensity of capital inflow to capital market financial savings. Mutual funds equity inflows have been stated to be standing at Rs.10,700 crore from `13,200-13,600 crore in the preceding two months.

      1 August 2018

    • Factors to Consider While Purchasing Cancer Insurance Plan

      Despite cancer being the most dreaded illness to have ever surfaced on the face of the Earth, people continue to remain uninformed about its graveness and financially unprepared for when it materialises. Insurance providers, too have become proactive regarding the matter and have commenced offering targeted protection against cancer.

      Distributors often tend to indulge in selling only those policies that incorporate the savings element. The sensitivity amongst people to be covered against cancer (as a disease) is relatively low and hence the struggle to minimise expenditure on cancer treatments and facilities continue to skyrocket.

      On a global level, cancer as a disease is now responsible for taking the lives of one-sixth of the population of India. Even though technology has made a breakthrough in all sectors of human lives and early detection of cancer has become ever so easy, the costs of treatment incurred still remains high.

      Factors One Must Keep in Consideration:

      Exclusions: There are certain restrictions placed by insurance providers on cancer coverages. For example, the sum assured amount for early stage cancers are reduced by 20-25%. If the cancer has been detected at a later stage, the insured receives the whole sum assured amount minus the claim paid out.

      Critical Illness: A cancer-oriented policy will not cover any other critical illness whatsoever. A critical illness rider can be purchased along with a life insurance policy to cover any critical disorders mentioned at the time of purchase of the policy.

      31 July 2018

    • Reasons why People Must Purchase Life Insurance Policy

      One can never be too confident about the chronological occurrence of events in one’s life, although, one can always be prepared for the worst. This is the reason why insurance experts, gurus, and professionals advocate purchasing a life insurance policy early on in life.

      The amount of money one receives as remuneration must not be a deciding factor towards purchasing a life insurance policy. Since life is unpredictable, one cannot be aware of the contingencies that might present themselves when least expected. For example, if the sole breadwinner of a certain family passes away in an accident or is diagnosed with a fatal illness, the whole family’s security is jeopardised.

      Therefore, to elucidate the importance of life insurance, mentioned below are a few benefits of the same:

      Life insurance policies secure the family of the insured in case an unforeseen event befalls him/her. The lump sum amount (sum assured) that is made available to the family by the insurer in fact helps the family cope with the immediate financial requirements and also serve as an effective savings tool.

      In case the insured passes away with a loan (home loan, car loan etc.) that is unpaid, it is likely to put immense financial burden on the family. The sum assured amount from the life insurance policy has the potential to take care of such expenses, thereby vastly reducing the family’s financial burden.

      If the insured falls gravely sick and is compelled to quit his/her job, that will most likely create an tremendous amount of pressure on the family. More than recuperating from a loss of income, the family of the insured will have to bear the costs of treatment (of the insured) as well. A life insurance policy helps during such times.

      30 July 2018

    • Life insurance companies will witness moderate growth in business in the first quarter of FY19

      Life insurers are expected to witness moderate growth in the first quarter of the financial year 2018-19 due to higher base and cyclicality. The growth is expected to continue in the subsequent quarters based on high penetration potential and structural modifications. The new business premium (NBP) is based on a hike in retail growth. The monthly business figures indicate an increase in the protection products offered by businesses.

      The consolidated net revenue of Bajaj Finserv will be increasing by 27% year-on-year in Q1FY19. SBI Life Insurance is expecting 20% hike in net premium income based on single premium growth and persistency improvement for renewals. ICICI Prudential Life Insurance will be witnessing a reduction in its new business premium based on higher base the previous year. The renewal premium may remain stable with balanced persistence.

      27 July 2018

    • Open Offer To Be Made by LIC to IDBI Bank Shareholders

      Life Insurance Corporation of India, the insurance mammoth, is expected to not receive any relaxation from the takeover code of the Securities and Exchange Board of India, and is required to make an open offer to IDBI Bank’s shareholders. Doing so will meet the requirements set by the Securities and Exchange Board of India which requires an acquisition of over 25% in a listed company to make an open offer. The stocks of IDBI Bank increased by 9.05% and closed on the Bombay Stock Exchange at Rs.53.20 yesterday. According to a government official, an open offer will be made by LIC and it will serve the best interests of shareholders who have more than 8% shares in IDBI, adding that there will be no participation from the government in the open offer.

      26 July 2018

    • Benefits of Purchasing Life Insurance Policies

      Life insurance policies help individuals and their families in many different ways. With the rising costs of healthcare and other commodities, owning a life cover that provides multiple benefits has gained utmost importance. Out of the many investment options (stocks, bonds, etc.), life insurance is considered to be the most simple and easy to understand along with being the one that provides a guaranteed lump sum amount of money at the end of the policy term

      The reasons why one should purchase a life insurance policy are many. Some of them are mentioned below:

      A facilitator of savings: More than providing a comprehensive life cover, life insurance policies instills the habit of disciplined saving in the individual. One can easily build a decent corpus with the assistance of a life insurance policy. Such policies are easy and require minimum skills from the consumer, and the final yield is tremendous. A caterer of multiple needs of the life insured: Life insurance policies can cater to a wide range of needs depending on the phase of life that the insured is at. By carefully analysing one’s existing and future liabilities, one can easily fall back on a life cover to meet financial goals. Examples include child’s education, marriage, retirement, and so on. A flexible financial instrument: There are multiple plans that life insurance incorporates. If one does not want to purchase a whole life cover, there are term plans to choose from. Term insurance policies are relatively less expensive and do not provide a maturity benefit to the surviving policyholder. A life insurance policy is also flexible in a way that it allows the family members of the insured (by providing enough coverage) to look at other investment options, barring a life insurance policy.

      25 July 2018

    • Reasons Why One Must Purchase Life Insurance Policy

      Life insurance policies can be looked at from two angles predominantly. From the investment perspective, premiums paid towards life insurance policies are eligible for tax benefits, and from a protection perspective, it is the financial cover that comes in handy for the family of the insured after the latter has passed away. Before one invests in a life insurance policy to fulfill one’s investment needs, one needs to do so to protect one’s family.

      Therefore, to elucidate the importance of life insurance policies, mentioned below are a few reasons why one should purchase one today:

      Sum Assured: Purchasing capital assets and saving money for one’s later stages of life becomes thoroughly possible with a life insurance policy. When the life insured survives the policy term, he/she receives a guaranteed sum assured amount (maturity benefit) from the insurer which can thereby be used for further investments in instruments like fixed deposit.

      Financial Liberty: If an individual is the sole breadwinner of a family, purchasing a life insurance becomes utterly necessary for him/her. This is because in case of the insured individual’s sudden death, his/her family will be rendered helpless financially. During such times, a life insurance policy’s death benefit (provided by the insurer) helps the family overcome some of the financial problems, thereby rendering their lives easy and hassle-free.

      24 July 2018

    • LIC Housing Finance to introduce loans with term cover

      LIC Housing Finance is planning to launch a new home loan product soon. The significance of this product is that the product will come with a low cost term insurance along with it. The company is planning to make its home loan product stand out by naming a competitive price for this term cover. The term insurance will also help in offering added security to the company. The company is also planning to offer both existing and new regular home loan borrowers an option to take part in a group protection policy. The difference here is that the bundled product does not have any additional premium that will have to be paid by the borrowers. The home loans at LIC Housing Finance starts at 8.35% and they are planning to increase their market reach by differentiating their product from the rest of the options available in the market.

      23 July 2018

    • Life Insurance Business Could Be Spun Off by Postal Department

      The Jan Dhan Yojana – the Centre’s flagship for financial inclusion, has seen the postal department make plans to improve its life insurance products. Manoj Sinha, the Minister of State for Communication, revealed that there are 2 really good products that can be availed for lower premiums in comparison with those offered by the Life Insurance Corporation of India. He added that however, both the products have not been utilised to their full potential. He also said that the insurance industry has massive potential, so they are now trying to make it a distinctive insurance company under the postal department. Top of the plans is to create an independent strategic business unit which they hope to complete in the coming 2 years. The Rural Postal Life Insurance scheme and the Postal Life Insurance scheme were previously available only to employees from the government sector, but the government extended it to professionals like engineers, doctors, bankers, lawyers, architects, management consultants and CAs as well as to employees of certain companies.

      20 July 2018

    • Tax Benefits Offered in a Life Cover

      Any amount of premium paid towards a life insurance policy will be eligible for a Section 80C deduction up until the limit of Rs.1.5 lakh in the course of any financial year. People sometimes assume that this benefit is applicable for LIC (Life Insurance Corporation of India) policies only. This is not an accurate fact, any policy obtained from any insurer (private or public) will be eligible for this deduction under the Income Tax Act, 1961.

      An important point to keep in mind here is that any premium whose value is more than 10% of the sum assured amount, and which was issued after 1 April 2012, will not be eligible for the Section 80C deduction. With regard to insurance policies that were issued before 1 April 2012, the limit is fixed at 20% of the total sum assured amount.

      The maturity amount that is received by the policyholder at the end of the policy term is completely exempted from tax as per Section 10(10D) of the Income Tax Act, 1961.

      19 July 2018

    • IDBI Managing Director Likely to Receive 5 Year Term After LIC Deal

      Life Insurance Corporation of India is all set to obtain a majority stake in the state-run lender. Having said that, Managing Director of IDBI Bank, B Sriram is believed to receive a 5-year term under LIC.

      LIC is believed to be in contact with B Sriram for his sheer experience and knowledge in the sector of finance and banking. Sriram will remain at helm, however, LIC may induct other board members if it deems suitable. Before joining IDBI bank as an MD, B Sriram headed the State Bank of India as their Director.

      With privatisation of IDBI bank, Sriram’s tenure will henceforth be eligible for an extension. B Sriram assumed office in IDBI after CEO and MD, MK Jain became the deputy governor of the Reserve Bank of India.

      18 July 2018

    • LIC-IDBI Agreement: How Insurers Invest

      IDBI Bank, which is a state-owned lender, has been facing troubled times off late, but the Life Insurance Corporation of India has offered to bail the bank out, leaving a number of people across the country with raised eyebrows. Some of the industry experts have said that it was against the interest of the insurer’s policyholders. The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India approved of the company holding a majority stake in an entity, thereby effectively waiving off the regulatory limit which was earlier set at 15%. This move has also been the subject of widespread criticism. Companies that have a corpus of less than Rs.50,000 crore can purchased no more than 10%, while companies with a corpus of between Rs.50,000 crore and Rs.2.5 lakh crore are limited to purchasing 12%, and those with a corpus in excess of Rs.2.5 lakh crore have the approval to buy stakes of up to 15%. LIC has received the approval to raise stake in excess of 15%.

      17 July 2018

    • Investing for Retirement and Securing Children’s Future

      In majority of cases, purchasing life insurance policies for children is not a recommendable approach to take, mostly because young children are dependents and will most likely remain so for an extended period of time. Since children do not make salaries, investing in a life insurance policy solely for them might not be the best choice.

      Life insurance premium rates usually increase with a person’s age. This is because the risk factor is accentuated and a person is more likely to contract diseases and fall ill in their old age as compared to a younger age. However, the chances of your children getting priced out of a life insurance policy deal are quite slim.

      In case you want to invest in a comprehensive insurance policy while knowing that your dependents are protected, term insurance policy is the route to take. Additionally, you should also contemplate investing in a health insurance policy for covering emergency medical situations. It is not a good idea to depend wholly on an employee cover as they might be lacking in multiple benefits that you can make use of. Another way of insuring your child’s future is having an emergency kitty and filling it at regular intervals. You may either choose a savings bank account, an FD, or small-time savings scheme.

      In conclusion, if you want to secure your future after retirement and also leave behind savings for your children, you will need to evaluate each of your financial goal. Investing in debt and equity mutual funds might help you attain your short-term goals, however, you will need a comprehensive life insurance policy to cover your dependents after your demise.

      16 July 2018

    • LIC-IDBI Agreement: How Insurers Invest

      IDBI Bank, which is a state-owned lender, has been facing troubled times off late, but the Life Insurance Corporation of India has offered to bail the bank out, leaving a number of people across the country with raised eyebrows. Some of the industry experts have said that it was against the interest of the insurer’s policyholders. The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India approved of the company holding a majority stake in an entity, thereby effectively waiving off the regulatory limit which was earlier set at 15%. This move has also been the subject of widespread criticism. Companies that have a corpus of less than Rs.50,000 crore can purchased no more than 10%, while companies with a corpus of between Rs.50,000 crore and Rs.2.5 lakh crore are limited to purchasing 12%, and those with a corpus in excess of Rs.2.5 lakh crore have the approval to buy stakes of up to 15%. LIC has received the approval to raise stake in excess of 15%.

      13 July 2018

    • Investment Products to Create Wealth in the Future: ICICI Prudential Life Insurance

      Factors such as global trade wars and other macroeconomic elements have had a serious impact on the market as a whole. However, despite the status quo, executive director of ICICI Prudential Life Insurance, Sandeep Batra believes in the potential of investment products and their sheer ability of generating tremendous wealth in the future.

      Highlighting grave issues like inflation, Sandeep Batra further said that even though the economical growth predicted for the future might not be entirely stable, India’s nominal 10% growth creates huge scopes of generating wealth and curbs the issue of inflation massively.

      For this vision to materialise, however, investors in India will be required to instill the component of financial discipline at their fundamental core. Investing in a property or house might seem like a gainful step, as it (the property) remains untouched while still generating money for the borrower, in most cases. Market linked and equity products might experience some fluctuations in the future, however the overall gain will remain unhampered.

      When talking about ‘savings-cum-insurance products’, Sandeep Batra regards ULIPs to be highly profitable as their benefits are relatively more transparent and charges involved are minimal.

      12 July 2018

    • New Rules Command Commission Payment Among Insurance Agents

      With removal of Section 44, the old rules surrounding commission payments have undergone a drastic change. According to the new rules, if the agent has not been rendering his/her services to the policyholder, then commissions are not provided either.

      Renewal commissions typically are paid to the agents when they offer some services to the customers. They act like remuneration for the agents. Therefore, if an agent is not serving the customer anymore, providing them with a renewal commission will not make any sense.

      Even though the rule of providing commission to dead or non-servicing agents has not been done away with completely, the insurance sector has started taking the quantum of business brought in by every agent into consideration before handing out commission money.

      11 July 2018

    • IndiaFirst Life Insurance Company Welcomes New CEO, Rushabh Gandhi

      IndiaFirst Life Insurance Company recently appointed Mr. Rushabh Gandhi as the new Deputy Chief Executive Officer effective. Mr. Gandhi took office on 1 July 2018.

      Mr. Gandhi has played a crucial role in the history of IndiaFirst. From the 20th rank, he has successfully elevated IndiaFirst to rank 13. Owing to his efforts, IndiaFirst in today’s date is the most widely popular insurance provider in India.

      On top of that, IndiaFirst’s retail APE has also undergone a major financial hike from 160 crore to Rs 575 crore in 2017-18, showing a 53% CAGR.

      10 July 2018

    • Bonus Accrued from Participating Life Insurance Policies

      The concept of a bonus is highly rewarding as it is an amount that is provided over and above the amount that a person is entitled to (at a job). Employers usually incentivise activities in offices by handing out bonus money to the good performers. Monetary gain usually instills a feeling of confidence in the individual and motivates them to work harder.

      In the world of insurance, the concept of bonus operates in the same manner. Bonus is that portion of money that is made available to policyholders over and above the assured amount. However, this bonus is provided only after the insurer has analysed the needs of the potential purchaser. Upon completion of the analysis, the bonus amount is provided. Insurance companies these days have become super proactive and have started recommending participating insurance policies to potential purchasers because of their bonus feature.

      Participating policies are the ones which extract a portion from the corporation’s profits. These policies are entitled to the profits earned by the corporation. For such plans, bonuses are offered on a yearly basis by insurance companies. These profits are either provided as a cash payout at the rate that has been declared initially, or they come as reversionary bonuses that get attached to the policy and increase in value every year. The lumpsum bonus is thereafter provided when the policy matures or if the policyholder passes away during the policy term. In case an insurance policy has been surrendered by a policyholder, only the discounted value of the accumulated bonus amount is handed to the individual.

      Participating insurance policies offering bonuses are meant for those investors who want a sense of security for the future and for moderate risk consumers. These policies provide a guaranteed upside in the form of bonuses and this extra income can act like a boon for many policyholders.

      The types of reversionary bonuses offered alongside participating policies are simple reversionary bonus (SRB), compounded reversionary bonus (CRB), terminal bonus, and interim bonus. Each of these have different features and each are paid out during different times.

      9 July 2018

    • Paytm Expected to Offer Life Insurance Policies to Partner Stores

      In a bid to promote all things digital, Paytm has recently announced that it will provide life insurance policies to offline partner stores (that are eligible for the same). The insurance policies will also be extended to the staff members of these partner stores.

      However, it is important to note that Paytm’s initiative Paytm Life Insurance Corporation Ltd will not be the one selling the insurance policies to potential customers. Whereas, an existing player from the insurance sector and market will be the one responsible for selling the life insurance covers.

      The COO of Paytm, Kiran Vasireddy firmly believes in the scope that digitisation holds. He believes that the responsibility of promoting the idea of digital economy falls on Paytm. The offline partner stores are basically assisting Paytm by spreading awareness amongst the masses about the importance of paying digitally without worrying about cash.

      Regarding this measure as one of the most important steps towards promoting digitisation, Paytm COO also said that cashless insurance will not only provide the much-needed financial security to staff members and their families but also promote the importance of going cashless, even while buying an insurance policy.

      6 July 2018

    • Taxation of Life Insurance Money

      The nominee of a policyholder is not taxed in case of the policyholder’s demise. The proceeds will be sent to the nominee upon the death of the insured. However, if the policy falls under the category of Keyman policy, the proceeds will be subject to tax. Life insurance policies that are availed between the 1st of April 2003 and the 31st of March 2012, tax will be charged in case the premiums applicable to the policy are more than 20% of the sum assured. The tax rate applicable will be marginal. Life insurance policies availed after the 1st of April 2012 will attract tax if the premium payments applicable to the policy are more than 10% of the sum assured.

      5 July 2018

    • Government’s Newly Launched Insurance Scheme Expected to Create Job Opportunities

      With the launch of Ayushman Bharat mission, India is expected to create over one lakh job opportunities for people all over the country.

      The sector of private hospitals and their corresponding expansion is expected to empower people the most. Under Ayushman Bharat, it is expected that the Government will empanel more than 25,000 hospitals in order to meet the healthcare needs of the society comprehensively. It has been assumed that if 300 new private hospitals are opened under the scheme and approximately 200 employees are hired at each of these hospitals, then 60,000 additional jobs are created inadvertently.

      Moreover, unskilled and semi-skilled job opportunities will also increase with the launch of Ayushman Bharat. It is estimated that the scheme will most probably help empower more than 80 lakh unskilled and semi-skilled workers and push them towards job opportunities such as construction of hospital buildings, expansion of existing properties, and so on.

      On top of that, the established workforce will also be required to intimate people about the policies under Ayushman Bharat mission. The Government is also expected to hire more than two lakh individuals on a temporary basis.

      4 July 2018

    • Reasons to Invest in Life Insurance Policy Early On in Life

      The benefit of protection is a prerequisite of any life insurance policy, however, they (life insurance policies) are considered investable for a range of other reasons as well. Their saving component and being able to help in situations of debt are a few examples of the many services life insurance policies offer. These days, however, people’s attention has shifted from the protection component to the tax saving component of life insurance policies. Therefore, mentioned below are a few points why people must look at life insurance policies as an essential for protection:

      Life insurance policies offer vast financial security that has remained unmatched by any other policy in the sector. Investing in a comprehensive life insurance policy guarantees the safety of an individual, and in case of untimely death of the individual, the policy hands out a death benefit in lump sum amount to the family members of the policyholder. Term insurance policies, however, are pure protection plans and cover only the insurance part with no maturity benefit at the end of the policy term.

      If an individual has purchased a life insurance policy, he/she will be able to make a deduction claim up to the amount of Rs.1.5 lakh under regulations provided by Section 80C of the Income Tax Act, 1961.

      Life insurance policies like unit-linked plans or ULIPs are highly comprehensive in nature. They not only offer protection to the insured but also help in building a substantial corpus to fulfill future needs (post retirement requirements). The policyholder also has the freedom to avail a loan against the policy wherein the sum assured acts like security.

      Life insurance policies usually provide a cushion for the finances of a family. Sole breadwinners must purchase a life insurance policy for they offer valuable protection to the family in case of untimely demises.

      3 July 2018

    • How to choose a life insurance plan for yourself

      With multiple insurance products like term plans, unit-linked insurance plans, endowment plans, money back plans, etc. available in the market it often becomes difficult for the customers to choose the right one. Ideally, you should buy a life insurance policy based on your insurance investment purpose. If you are an individual having no dependents you needn't invest in a life insurance policy at all. Contrarily, if you are someone having a family comprising of parents, spouse, and children then buying a life insurance policy is a must for you to secure the future of your dependents. It will be wise to buy a term plan as such plans offer a higher amount of assured sum at lower premium rates. However, the term plan should ideally have a high claim settlement ratio of more than 90% with the lowest premium. In short, whatever policy you choose, be very clear about your insurance goals and based on that take the decision.

      2 July 2018

    • Implication of Credit History on Life Insurance

      Credit history plays a vital role in determining multiple things with respect to finance. Whether a person will be able to repay a loan or how they handle credits are strong determinants of obtaining life insurance policies.

      Most insurance providers look at credit scores of potential policy buyers to check whether or not they are in a position to repay the loan back. Information that are also looked at are medical history, how you have driven your vehicle, records of your education, and so on.

      In order to foster risk management, insurance companies often make use of advanced software technology. Greater the data, more will be the accuracy and hence less energy will have to be put in medical examinations before obtaining life insurance policies.

      29 June 2018

    • Mergers and Acquisitions Complicate Affairs in Insurance

      Max Life Insurance recently withdrew from the race to the acquisition of Federal Life Insurance owing to factors like complications in the mergers and acquisitions procedures.

      According to multiple industry experts and professionals, M&A deals are often put on hold or are scraped off altogether, due to factors concerning valuations. According to the Insurance Laws (Amendment) Act, any given insurance company has to be valued at a fair amount. This includes their financial assets and factors such as value of new assets and liabilities of the policyholder.

      When an insurance company is valued, the collection of future premiums is also a matter of consideration, especially for the sector of insurance. However, factors like renewal rate often lead to scraping off of merger deals.

      28 June 2018

    • Life Insurance Policies for Workers Approved by NEMA

      National Emergency Management Agency or NEMA recently approved a group life insurance policy for its workers. This has ushered in a new era of policy for the staff members of NEMA

      Furthermore, NEMA has also planned to establish a new condition of service for its staff members and also plans to institute a committee to introduce pertinent recommendations. This resulted in a sort of dispute created by the workers of NEMA as they felt that the new law does not conform to the existing labor norms.

      Additionally, NEMA officials also commented that every necessary action to ensure the welfare of the staff members will be taken.

      27 June 2018

    • Life Insurance Policies: Family Protection and Beyond

      The economic/financial impact that befalls a family if their sole breadwinner passes away suddenly is great. Where the loss incurred emotionally is intangible and incomparable, there are many ways to ensure that the financial gap created due to the misfortune is balanced to a certain extent.

      One of the ways to ensure that the gap is less is by the means of purchasing life insurance policies for family members, from parents, spouse, children, to grandchildren, grandparents, and more. These days, life insurance in the contemporary world has established an unilateral meaning. People either take their surroundings casually or invest in a life insurance policy only for tax saving purposes. Protection for the family must always be the primary reason for investing in an all-inclusive life insurance policy.

      However, there are multiple factors that are taken into consideration before an insurance provider offers a life insurance policy to a certain individual. Some of these factors are lifestyle, age, existing status of health, and so on. Of all these factors, health and age are the most important ones. This is because as an individual grows old, he/she becomes more and more susceptible to diseases and illnesses and thereby requires more medical attention. Spending lump sum amount of money on medical costs is surely not the ideal thing to do. This is where protection offered by life insurance and health insurance policies come in handy.

      Another crucial thing one must take into consideration before investing is how much is just enough. This will be based on the discretion and the needs of the policyholder and his/her family.

      26 June 2018

    • Importance of Life Insurance for Kids

      Purchasing life insurance policies for children, especially newborns, might not seem like a very important task to accomplish as children are dependent wholly on their parents/family members for support. Yet, investing in a life insurance policy for kids is utterly important as it offers protection during unexpected medical emergencies.

      Mentioned below are a few reasons why you should invest in a life insurance policy for your child immediately after he/she is born.

      Life insurance policies protect people from the burden of spending money from their own pockets by offering coverages. Moreover, if you have a policy, you can allow yourself to be relatively peaceful and less stressed during a contingency.Parents can save a substantial portion of money on college funds as a whole life policy acts as a cash-value element.It ensures that kids have insurability in some form. Investing in a term life insurance policy is usually advisable for children.

      25 June 2018

    • Life Insurance market in India to be led by term protection plans and ULIPs

      Increasing financialisation, favourable demographics, and a large protection gap are causing a structural growth in the Indian life insurance segment but it has also been a roller-coaster ride for the industry. Disproportion in pricing and a high penalty for policyholders surrendering non-linked savings is causing a dent in the profitability of the life insurance sector which has a penetration of more than 50% in India. High penalty surrender charges in non-linked savings is a growing concern among the policyholders and many are hence, resorting to unit-linked insurance plans (ULIPs) which have no surrender charges after 5 years. Term protection plans also offer a better proposition to investors than traditional modes of savings.

      22 June 2018

    • Life Insurance penetration in India can be boosted through simplification and digitisation

      Compared to the 3.47% global penetration of life insurance coverage, India has a penetration coverage of only 2.72%. Besides the Western countries, when it comes to the Asian countries, India again has a lower insurance penetration in comparison to Taiwan, Thailand, Malaysia, and Hong Kong. Insurance penetration is the ratio of total premiums submitted in a specific year against the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the country. As per the experts, by making the life insurance policies simpler and digitalised, the penetration level of life insurance policies in India can be increased significantly. If the insurance policies are simple in nature, the potential customers can easily understand the policies without making repetitive queries.

      The most vital reason contributing to the low penetration rate in India is that when people find difficulty in understanding the insurance product, they simply tend to ignore the product and skip buying it. Moreover, instead of buying the life insurance policies directly from the fund house, people prefer to buy them online. However, when it comes to increasing the level of penetration of life insurance in the country, India still has a long way to go.

      21 June 2018

    • Role of Aegon Life Insurance CPO expanded

      Mumbai based insurance provider Aegon Life Insurance has recently announced the expansion of the role of its current Chief People Officer, Saba Adil. While she will continue to serve as Aegon’s Chief People Officer, she will also be handling additional responsibilities as the Chief Operating Officer of the company. She is offered the new position with effect from May 2018. Under this new role, she will be handling the responsibility of creating a superior and distinguished customer experience. However, she will continue reporting to the MD and CEO as before.

      Saba has started her journey with Aegon as one of their founding members in 2007. She has an overall experience of more than 18 years in multiple roles which include project management, human resource, and customer operations. According to Vineet Arora, the MD, and CEO of Aegon Life Insurance, she has been an active member since the inception of Aegon and has played a very powerful role in taking the company towards growth. During her tenure with Aegon Life Insurance, Saba has designed and introduced an insightful business strategy while also leading a customer-driven innovation project. She is expected to make many more significant contributions to the growth of the company.

      20 June 2018

    • Dream Builder Plan Launched by IDBI Federal Life Insurance

      Considered to be a revolutionary in the field of insurance, IDBI Federal Life Insurance recently instituted its newest insurance policy known as the ‘Dream Builder Plan’. The scheme is essentially non-linked, non-participating in nature and will henceforth give out Guaranteed Annual Payouts which is a portion of the Sum Assured amount made available during maturity of the policy. This portion will be offered during the concluding three years of the policy term.

      The most striking feature of the Dream Builder Plan is that the policyholder can choose his/her Maturity Sum Assured (MSA) amount.

      19 June 2018

    • Life Insurance Premiums and Costs: Ways to Save Money

      Even though life insurance policies have attained importance and have managed to grasp the attention of thousands of people in India, the concept remains to be distorted as people continue to hesitate investing, owing to the factor of high costs. Life insurance policies play a vital role in providing financial support to families of policyholders during unfortunate events. Moreover, premiums paid towards life insurance policies attract huge tax benefits.

      Mentioned below are a few tips in which people can save chunks of money, while still being able to invest in life insurance policies:

      Invest in a life insurance policy as early on in life as possible.

      While investing, keep in mind that premiums for term policies are relatively lower than whole life policies. Analyse your need then make the investment.

      Purchase only after you have completely understood your needs. Extra covers will mean paying extra premiums.

      Scan the market carefully before deciding which insurer to go with.

      Enhance your physical as well as mental health.

      Ensure that your premiums are paid well on time.

      Keep in consideration the final expense insurance.

      18 June 2018

    • Efficient Ways to Reduce Premium Amount of Life Insurance Policies

      Not only is a life insurance policy a reliable backup plan, but it also serves the purpose of securing one’s future. India alone houses around 360 million insurance plans (life, health, car, and so on) in today’s date.

      Where a life insurance policy can act as a financial support for the future, staying in tandem with the premiums might get difficult for a handful of people. A study conducted recently revealed that savings in India is likely to take a major hike of 35%, which is an improved figure as compared to 26% in 2010.

      However, the only way to make more money is by saving whatever you can. Therefore, the below-mentioned points will give you an idea as to how you can reduce your premium amount to a bare minimum:

      Invest in an insurance policy early on in life

      Choose a policy period best suited to your needs

      Invest in the sector of health insurance as medical emergencies are unpredictable

      Invest in insurance policies online to save time and for additional benefits

      Pay your premiums on time

      Smart investing goes a long way in ensuring that you do not spend extra money.

      15 June 2018

    • Telangana government launches Rs.5 lakh free life insurance scheme for farmers

      On 4 June 2018, the Telangana State Government signed a MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) with the Life Insurance Corporation of India for the implementation of the free life insurance scheme launched for the state farmers. Under this insurance scheme, 58 lakh of farmers within the age group of 18 to 60 years will get a lifetime life insurance cover at a premium of Rs.2, 271 which will be paid by the government. As per the terms of this scheme, regardless of the cause of death, the family of the affected farmer will get Rs.5 lakh compensation within 10 days of claim submission. However, it is mandatory for the farmers to appoint a nominee while availing this scheme.

      While signing the MoU on Monday, Chief Minister, K.Chandrasekhar Rao called this initiative to be the best thing done by him in his entire life. He also stated that the state governments' focus from now on will be to make agriculture financially feasible for the farmers. For the fast implementation of the scheme, he has provided a set of directions to the agricultural officers and instructed them to take the full responsibility of its quick execution. The government will start distributing the insurance bonds among the farmers from 15 August 2018.

      14 June 2018

    • Things to Consider Before Investing in Life Insurance Policies

      While buying a health insurance policy, the important things that one must keep in his/her consideration are waiting periods, network hospitals, riders available, add-ons, and so on. Buying a life insurance policy, on the other hand, demands a completely different set of things to consider.

      Life insurance policy: The sandwich generation - people who take care of children or provide for the senior citizens of their family are the ones who need life insurance policies the most. Life insurance plans provide a total sum assured to the policyholder’s family in case of his/her sudden demise. The general thumb rule while buying a life insurance policy is to make the purchase early on in life. Therefore, a life insurance policy which has 10-15 times more worth than your current salary is a safe route to take.

      13 June 2018

    • HDFC Life Insurance unveiled its advanced chatbot, Elle

      HDFC Life Insurance has recently introduced its chatbot Elle which is a path-breaking innovation in the domain of Artificial Intelligence (AI). A chatbot is an advanced software developed to conduct conversations with people on various web portals without any kind of human intervention. With a similar purpose, the chatbot Elle is designed to carry one-to-one discussions with the stakeholders of the company and handle all their queries and requirements.

      By making use of natural language processing and artificial intelligence, this smart website Chat Bot will address all the specific needs and requests of the policyholders of HDFC Life Insurance. Elle is capable of answering the queries and confusions of the customers related to the policy details, handling premium receipt requests and several other statement-related inquiries. With the launch of this innovative tool, HDFC Life Insurance has now moved one step forward in serving its customers.

      12 June 2018

    • Best online life insurance policies in India

      Life insurance is one of the most optimum ways in which one can protect their family. It safeguards the family members in the event of the life assured’s untimely demise. The policy provides a sum assured to the beneficiary of the policyholder at the time of his/her disability/death. Some of the most popular online life insurance schemes in India are listed below:

      Tata AIA Life Insurance iRaksha TROP Plan - This is an online term plan with return of premium that has gained a lot of popularity in the recent past. Women get lower premium rates under this scheme.

      SBI Life eShield Plan - This is a pure term insurance policy that can be purchased online. The premium rates for this plan are relatively very low. The plan offers level cover and increasing cover options.

      Aegon Life iTerm Insurance Plan - This online life insurance plan provides policyholders life cover until the age of 100 years. There is also no upper limit on the sum assured, as the coverage can be increased based on one’s needs.

      11 June 2018

    • Buying life and health insurance policies is a must for every individual

      Even though there are a variety of insurance policies available in the market, an individual should lay the maximum focus on buying an adequate number of life and health insurance plans. While a health insurance plan is a must buy for everyone to cover themselves against the high medical costs, a life insurance policy is a tool to safeguard one’s dependents from all sorts of financial struggles in their absence. With the increase in health issues and life-threatening diseases such as cancer, heart ailments, kidney and liver diseases etc. it has become extremely important for every individual to include sufficient health and life insurance plans in their insurance portfolio. These insurance plans will not only protect you and your family from the unexpected financial crisis but will also offer you peace of mind.

      8 June 2018

    • Insurance companies change the pitch of advertising life insurance plans

      Life insurance companies have started adopting new approaches to advertise life insurance plans. It is seen that generic event insurance such as wedding insurance has not struck a chord with consumers. The fact that the word “death” was included in policy wordings made wedding insurance look like a bad omen. This product was later sold as an event cancellation policy that avoided the usage of the word “death”.

      Savings and investment goals can be met with investment in mutual funds, bank deposits, real estate purchase, etc. But the significance of life insurance lies in the fact that it offers financial protection in the event of death - this sort of coverage is not offered by any other instruments.

      The right kind of messaging is required to help consumers assess the financial consequence of a death in the family and make wise investment decisions.

      7 June 2018

    • Results from Canara HSBC Oriental Bank of Commerce Registers 51% Increase in Profits

      An announcement from Canara HSBC Oriental Bank of Commerce Life Insurance Company Limited reported a net profit of Rs.168 crore in the financial year 2017-2018. The profit indicates a 51% increase in profits from the previous financial year.

      In the last fiscal year, the company has grown by 34% in terms of new individual business premium. The industry, on the whole, has registered a growth rate of 19%. In the past 3 years, the company has a recorded compounded annual growth rate of 36% in comparison to the overall industry growth rate of 16%.

      There has also been an increase in the company’s gross written premium from Rs.2,295 crore to Rs.2,781, indicating a 21% growth. In addition to the above, Canara HSBC Oriental Bank of Commerce has also recorded an overall settlement ratio of 97.18%, 13th-month persistency of 77.9%, and a 1% decrease in its operating expense ratio.

      The company has diversified the services it offers and has several digitally-enabled services.

      6 June 2018

    • 4 Best Life Insurance Policy Riders To Buy

      Riders are the most cost-effective options to enjoy the extreme coverage of a life insurance policy. Custom riders are a must for the policyholders to optimise the policies as per their lifestyle and individual requirements. Here are the 4 best riders to incorporate in your life insurance policy:

      Accidental permanent and partial disability- This rider insures the policyholder against permanent or partial disability caused due to accidents. If he/she is unable to lead a normal life after the accident, the insurer either gives a lump sum amount or waive off the premiums while offering the assured sum.

      Accidental death rider- This add-on offered with the term plans is a staple for individuals who are the only earning member of the family. In case of accidental deaths, the beneficiaries receive a separate rider amount, either a default amount or an amount selected by the owner, along with death benefit.

      Critical illness- It not only helps to meet the medical expenditures but also acts as an income-substitute at the time of critical illnesses. Since it covers the owner against the critical ailments mentioned in the policy it is indeed a very economical way of safeguarding oneself from diseases.

      Waiver of premium- The Waiver of Premium (WOP) rider proves to be very helpful at the time of emergencies. If the policyholder is unable to pay the annual premiums due to accidental disability or detected with a life-threatening illness, this rider will waive off the future premiums.

      5 June 2018

    • The Right Way to Buy an Insurance Policy

      The most important element to keep in consideration is the amount you want to be insured for. The ideal route to take while contemplating investing in a life insurance policy could be 10 years’ worth of what you are earning currently.

      However, this also varies with time as factors like family size, assets, etc. start playing a major role in the financial situation of the household in determining the expenditure. The easiest way to calculate this is by estimating the total budget of a family in case the sole breadwinner passes away.

      The sure shot way of wrapping your head around the concept of insurance is by keeping it separate from the idea of investments. It is important to not look at life insurance policies solely as tax saving tools, because they solve a greater purpose of protecting one’s family in case of the policyholder’s demise. Most agencies indulge in this habit because they are able to extract huge commissions but ideally, insurance policies should be gauged by the number of benefits they offer.

      4 June 2018

    • Major Life Insurance Scheme Cleared by Cabinet of Telangana

      With respect to farmers in Telangana, a huge insurance scheme has recently been launched providing each of them with a Rs.5 lakh cover. This scheme is believed to spring into action on 15 August 2018.

      Agriculture Department officials are expected to produce a list of the most eligible farmers in Telangana, present it to LIC officials and thereafter make the premium payment accordingly. The documents of the insurance policy will be forwarded to the respective farmers post 15 August 2018. The proposal for this scheme was recently approved by the State Cabinet.

      This scheme fell under the administration of LIC and it will entail a premium of upto Rs.2,271 for each individual farmer. Additionally, these premiums are believed to be paid by the State Government on behalf of the farmers who are eligible.

      1 June 2018

    • Chatbot Elle: An HDFC Life Insurance Initiative and What it Offers

      In order to better serve its customers and policyholders, HDFC Life Insurance has recently launched a chatbot on its website called Elle. A bot is nothing but a computer designed software programme that aims at assisting consumers and resolving their issues.

      Henceforth, with the assistance of Elle, an individual will be able to resolve his/her queries regarding anything, request for invoices (premium receipts), and so on. The bot’s main objective is to reduce the hassle that customers have to go through to resolve a query. It also simplifies the mechanism, hence there is minimum effort on the consumer’s end.

      Chatbot Elle is slightly different in its operations as compared to a live chat window. Where in a live chat window, you have a human being on the other end, Chatbot Elle uses artificial intelligence to sort out problems.

      31 May 2018

    • How to Decide Your Life Insurance Coverage Amount

      Choosing a life insurance policy can be a confusing especially when one is young and in the pink of health. However, life’s unpredictability should be a reason why one should consider purchasing a policy that would help secure loved ones in trying times. When unsure of the coverage amount one should choose, the following factors can help one gain a bit of clarity.

      One’s current level of income is a factor that should be considered first. Most financial advisors suggest that one’s life insurance cover should be at least 10 times more than their annual income. The next factor to consider is debt. The sum assured in this case should be enough to cover any existing debts plus a financial safety net for the beneficiaries. Age is another factor that helps determine the amount to opt for. Younger individuals can opt for term life policies while older individuals can choose a money-back policy.

      Life insurance covers provide a financial stability for family members after the death of the policyholder.

      30 May 2018

    • Why is Investing in a Life Insurance Policy the Wisest Choice?

      Apart from offering a coverage for an individual’s entire lifespan, life insurance policies also help save taxes. This is the reason why insurance companies witness a surge of policyholders at the end of each financial year.

      Postponing your investments until a later date or for the end of the FY is not considered a viable option. Additionally, viewing a life insurance policy solely for its tax saving features is also not a good approach. Hence, given below are a few reasons why life insurance deserves more credit than we generally tend to give.

      A whole life policy basically has you covered for your entire life, provided you are paying the premiums on time.

      A term insurance (as the name suggests) covers you only for a specific period of time, although, the maturity amount is given only after the demise of the policyholder.

      A money back plan gives the beneficiary the opportunity to receive maturity amount in regular intervals or periodically.

      An endowment plan essentially allows the beneficiary to obtain the maturity amount.

      An annuity plan generates a payment stream upon maturity.

      29 May 2018

    • Why Should you Invest in Life Insurance?

      Other than sectors such as banking and FMCG, investors have been observed to invest in the sector of life insurance. The concept itself dates back to the year of 1818 Kolkata (Calcutta) introduced the first ever insurance company, Oriental Life Insurance.

      Over the years, life insurance policies have undergone major changes and adaptations. In today’s date, a life insurance policy is essentially a backbone for an individual, as it not only covers them for life but offers additional benefits as well.

      Listed below are a few reasons why investing in a life insurance policy is the smartest choice one could make.

      India has an extremely low penetration of life insurance policies, which automatically makes it a sector with high growth potential.

      Even though people have started investing in life insurance policies more often, it still remains to be a sector which is grossly underinsured.

      India, as an economy, is growing at a tremendous rate which means the per capita income is also likely to surge.

      Institutional investors such as FIIs and pension funds totally adore this sector solely for the kind of visibility it provides with its policies.

      According to this year’s Union Budget ULIP and LTCG investments will henceforth be tax exempted. This, also, is a great news for the sector of life insurance.

      28 May 2018

    • Life Insurance Vs Self-Insurance

      A technique that mainly focuses on risk management, self-insurance is nothing but keeping aside a certain sum of money (known as corpus) to deal with an unexpected unforeseen event. It is basically a step towards prevention of risk by in turn devising a mechanism wherein individuals invest in multiple financial products except insurance. However, whether a self-insurance plan is safer than a life insurance is highly debatable.

      Financial advisors and professionals, on the contrary, have been reinforcing time and again that life insurance is the best guarantor of financial security and no other plan can surpass it. This statement comes after years of first-hand research and evidence collection. Therefore, stated below are a few reasons why life insurance is a considerably safer route as compared to a self-insurance plan.

      You are covered from the first day itself. It may take you years to build a corpus and while you are still at it, you may face some unfortunate event which you might not be prepared for. A life insurance policy essentially helps deal with such uncertainties.

      The stability offered by life insurance is guaranteed, whereas that might not be the case with a self-insurance plan. Self-insurance schemes are always subject to market risks and have the potential to generate losses as well. A standard life insurance policy will give you guaranteed returns along with a death benefit maturity.

      You will have access to cash at any given time. The facility to borrow money during times that you need it the most is readily available in life insurance.

      25 May 2018

    • How Much Should be Ideally Spent on a Life Insurance Policy?

      Depending on the kind of circumstances that a family has to endure, investment in a life insurance policy is advised or suggested. However, sometimes you might be confused about the amount to invest. You might think it is too much or too less. It is important to keep in consideration here that two people with the exact same incomes can lead entirely different lifestyles and will hence have different set of expenditures. Therefore, their life insurance coverages will also vary.

      Mentioned below are some of the elements that are important to assess a life insurance cover:

      1. Carefully determine all your expenses (barring income) which includes household expenditure, child care requirements, and so on.

      2. Make sure that you are not compromising your children’s future in your absence.

      3. Consider the number of loans that are in your name.

      4. Account for another expenses that might get difficult to pay for when you are not there.

      5. Keep your spouse or partner in mind for their welfare.

      24 May 2018

    • Mistakes to Look Out for While Investing in a Life Insurance Policy

      Every individual is bound to make mistakes. However, certain mistakes can be avoided, especially when it means investing in plans and policies. Therefore, to prevent you from making the same mistakes time and again, given below are a few of the most common fallacies that people often tend to go wrong with while purchasing life insurance plans.

      Not being able to properly communicate your needs: Being very precise about your needs goes a long way in ensuring that you invest in just the right plan. Seek the help of an advisor in this regard.

      Not taking into consideration every small aspect: If you fail to provide accurate information in your form, there are high chances of your claim being rejected. It is always a good idea to do this yourself instead of seeking help of a third party.

      Not cross checking details of verification: If your life insurance contract has some discrepancy or you are not satisfied with the information, you can always make a return of the policy and ask for a refund on the same.

      Not telling your family members or asking for their opinion: A policy is meant to benefit an entire family. Therefore, it might get difficult for them to understand the terms of the policy at a later stage in life.

      Not sustaining your commitment: If you discontinue, surrender, or lapse your life insurance policy halfway through, it might have grave consequences in the future.

      23 May 2018

    • Chief Minister Chandrasekhar Rao in Talks with Authorities of LIC

      The principal authorities for the departments of Agriculture and Finance has been advised by the current Chief Minister to put on hold whatever conversations they have been having with LIC professionals. These authorities have been in cahoots with LIC officials to bring into existence a scheme which includes lower premiums and such.

      Ever since the Central Government has introduced this scheme, the states have been opining that free provisions must be provided to their respective farmers. Before this insurance scheme gets its official launch, CM Rao wants the procedure to be completed.

      22 May 2018

    • Quantifying Life Insurance Policies: How Much is Just Enough?

      The kind of life insurance cover that you are opting for usually depends on two important factors. The first one being your family’s or your condition and the second one being your source of income.

      However, two people having the exact same income can have entirely different needs and therefore may end up spending their money in completely different ways. In that case, it is advisable that they opt for a policy best suited to their needs. An insurance personnel who has experience in this regard will be able to give fairly reasonable suggestions.

      Contemplation of scenarios that do not involve you is another important factor in determining which life insurance cover to invest in. For example, if you have kids, you will need help with them and will therefore incur expenses on child care. Therefore, calculate all your household expenses before deciding on a life insurance policy. You need to choose a plan that will essentially ensure that your children’s future is not affected in any way. When you already have a job, or are running your business, it might not be possible to calculate how much money your child’s education will cost. However, planning wisely and then investing in a life insurance policy goes a long way in ensuring that the next 10-15 years of your life are uncomplicated and stress free.

      Apart from your household responsibilities and childcare expenditure, there are loans that you might have taken. A good policy takes some of that burden off of you and your liabilities.

      21 May 2018

    • Factors Affecting Life Insurance Plans

      People all over the world, especially young adults, have still not grasped the core meaning and absolute necessity to invest in a life insurance policy. Life expectancy is usually not a matter of great concern for young adults, and the senior citizens are, more often than not, busy paying their mortgages.

      However, most of the times, in many cases life insurance policies are negated, or cancelled out entirely because the individual might not qualify for the same. This could be attributed to different factors, one of which is lifestyle. This will automatically mean that the person should have bought a life insurance policy early on in their life. However, age is not the sole contributing factor towards a person not being able to buy a life insurance policy. Other factors such as consumption of cigarettes, alcohol, job type, and so on are often the reason why policies are declined to some people.

      Statistics lay the groundwork for all insurance companies. What they do is basically gauge the frequency at which a person is falling sick (which again is dependent on many factors) and thereby determine whether or not they are eligible to buy a life insurance policy. Even if the life expectancy is not hampered, the total insurance cost along with the person’s capacity to attain the same will be affected. If you are a regular smoker or an avid drinker, chances are that you will be required to pay comparatively higher premiums.

      18 May 2014

    • Overall growth of SBI Life Insurance in FY18 better than other peers

      The Value of New Business margins of SBI Life increased from 15.4% in FY17 to 16.2% in FY18. This is partially due to the lower expense ratio and persistency related assumption change. The overall annual premium equivalent(APE) growth of SBI was at 27% in FY18 which was much better than their peers. SBI Life’s VNB margins also increased to 16.2% from the 15.4% margin in FY17. With the strong distribution strength that SBI has, the short term growth is also expected to be much stronger than their peers.

      17 May 2018

    • Taking the “Insurance is an investment’ approach

      Still, in this day and age, loads of people still view insurance as an investment, and therefore, are only concerned about the returns that their policy provides. When taking this approach, people often tend to give lesser importance to getting the right policy which is suited to their needs. This is especially true in the case of term insurance which many people view as a loss if no claim is raised and no premiums are returned. However, the story is quite different when it comes to purchasing endowment plans or unit-linked insurance plans (ULIPs) which often provide insufficient coverage but charge very steep premiums. Experts are of the view that insurance and investments must be kept separate. While term insurance is the best choice in terms of insurance, one can invest in a number of avenues like mutual funds, fixed deposits, stocks, shares, etc. for the purpose of investing.

      16 May 2018

    • Importance of ensuring you have adequate life insurance

      Insurance is fast becoming a necessity at par with others like food, shelter, clothing, etc. The government has been offering various life insurance schemes via partner banks and post offices to allow people to have some form of insurance coverage. Even employers are nowadays offering some basic form of life or health insurance coverage to their employees for their well-being. Also, more and more insurers are nowadays adopting various channels to create and raise awareness regarding the importance of having insurance. This has definitely lead to more and more people buying insurance to protect their loved ones. However, when it comes to buying insurance, many people are lost about the amount of coverage they should be getting to cover their loved ones.

      Premiums over coverage

      One of the biggest reasons why under-insurance still poses as a problem in the insurance transactions because people end up giving priority to premiums over getting adequate coverage. Several people who seek to purchase an insurance policy will give importance to the tax-saving aspect of the policy than to ensure that the plan they are buying is actually fit for their needs or would provide a sufficient amount of coverage in time of a misfortune. Same is the case with employers who regard insurance premiums as a cost. As a result, they end up providing covers which are barely sufficient to provide financial aid to the family of an insured policy member. What people completely miss acknowledging is that getting adequate coverage is way more important than saving tax or reducing expenses.

      15 May 2018

    • Life insurance sector Savings in financial assets

      The life insurance market in India largely consists of savings. One of the greatest boosters for life insurance as a product has been the increase in financial asset savings. Post-demonetisation, investments/savings in financial assets like real estate and gold are being closely monitored by the government. In fact, the real estate industry is still reeling from the effects of demonetisation which imposed restrictions on cash payments.

      Tax deductions are another reason why insurance is viewed as a very lucrative investment option by tax payers. After all, insurance buyers are entitled to claim income deductions up to Rs.1,50,000 for premiums which they pay towards an insurance policy. moreover, for certain types of insurance policies, the returns on investment and death benefit is also exempt from tax under the provision of Sec 10 of the Income Tax Act.

      14 May 2014

    • Life insurance sector growth to be spurred by key structural drivers

      India’s life insurance sector is looking at hopeful times ahead with greater growth. The industry has registered robust double-figure growth in terms of new business premiums since 2015-16. This growth is now expected to rise further by nearly 20% in the coming 5 years. Some of the key factors which are expected to drive growth for the industry, include greater focus on protection plans, lower penetration, greater savings in financial assets after demonetisation, boost from bancassurance, and increased adoption of digital channels.

      Speaking of insurance penetration in India, it continues to be low, at 2.72%, as opposed to 3.47% which is the global average. In terms of insurance density, the global average is $353, while in India, it still remains at $46.5. This is especially low, when compared to a number of other Asian countries, which taken measures to up their insurance density and penetration. For instance, in 2017, Hong Kong had insurance penetration of 16.20%; Japan had insurance penetration of 7.15%; South Korea with 7.37% and Taiwan had insurance penetration of 16.65%. However, the low insurance penetration in the Indian market surely gives hope that there is much room for improvement in the future.

      10 May 2018

    • Are you adequately insured?

      Your family is undoubtedly one of your greatest possessions and wouldn’t you do anything to ensure that they are safe and well-provided for? Life Insurance is one such tool which can go a long way to ensure that your loved ones will be safe if a misfortune were to strike. Life insurance is not just meant to support your family when you’re not around. It can also be invaluable help when you may have been injured or rendered disabled in case of an accident or illness.To ensure that you have purchased life cover that is adequate for you and your family, here are some things which you must consider when deciding on the coverage amount.

      Be sure of your budget – When investing in an insurance policy, be aware of how much of your income you can comfortably allocate towards insurance premiums. While you may want to get more than adequate cover for your loved ones, what is the use of the premiums for the same will lead you to live a compromised lifestyle. Therefore, invest for a sum assured which you are confident is affordable for you.

      Family’s needs – One of the most important factors to find out your adequate amount of life cover is to assess your family’s needs and expenses. only after you know how much your family requires to sustain their lifestyle can you reach a figure which would be sufficient to cover those needs.

      Future financial obligations – Every individual has their own set of commitments which they have promised to fulfil not only for themselves, but also for their loved ones. Be it purchasing a house, funding your children’s education, weddings, your own retirement, etc., one needs to factor in all of these expenses as well in their insurance coverage to ensure that these obligations are fulfilled, no matter what may happen.

      9 May 2018

    • Benefits of Whole Life Insurance

      Whole life insurance is a popular type of life insurance plan which basically provides cover for an entire lifetime. These plans have a savings and a protection component. The death benefit is a fixed amount which is paid to the nominee if the insured dies before the end of the policy term. If the insured survives the policy term, which is usually 100 years, then the policy turns into a matured endowment policy. Premiums for these plans are usually significantly more expensive than term insurance plans since the coverage period is much longer.

      Whole life plans provide a string of valuable benefits to policyholders who are looking to stick to a single insurance plan for their entire lifetime. Some of the notable benefits are as follows:

      Lifetime coverage – a whole life plan provides coverage for your entire lifetime, which means that you don’t have to worry about your coverage period expiring. This is far more convenient as compared to term plan which offer coverage for a limited tenure of a maximum of 30 years.

      Continuous cover & periodic payments – Whole life plans accumulate survival benefit which increases over the policy tenure. Whole life plans also provide lifetime coverage at in exchange for premiums which remain fixed during the tenure of the policy. There is a guaranteed sum assured and performance-linked bonuses which are provided.

      Fixed premiums – the other advantage of whole life plans is that they do not have increasing premiums. The premiums remain unchanged during the entire premium payment tenure of the plan.

      Tax benefits – policyholders can avail tax benefits on the premiums paid and also the returns received under Section 80C and Section 10(10D) of the Income Tax Act, 1961.

      Loan Option – The option to take a loan against your life insurance policy is applicable for whole life policies. The loan facility can be availed only after the policy has acquired a surrender value.

      Additional source of income – The returns you receive as bonuses under a whole life plan can be an additional source of income for your loved ones and help them take care of their needs.

      8 May 2018

    • India’ life insurance sector retailing 776 products

      According to the data released by the Life Insurance Council on March 31, the Indian life insurance industry currently offers a total of 776 products, among which 587 are individual products, while the remaining 189 are group insurance products. Out of the 587 individual life insurance products that are available, 557 of them are sold by private life insurance players, while the remaining 30 are sold by Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC).

      However, the need for such a large number of policies has often been questioned, especially since life insurance is a complicated products for most people to understand. It takes a minimum of 3 to 4 personal visits by the agent to convince a customer to purchase a policy. In this scenario, the large number of policies now available only adds to the confusion. Also adding to the confusion is the jargon which insurance companies use to lay down the terms, conditions, coverage and other aspects.

      In light of this, IRDAI has been constantly discouraging insurance providers from rolling out multiple products/policies in a year. Currently, an insurer can only launch 5 products in a year, especially since the existing products offer ample options to the customer. This step has been taken in light of the situation where the requirement calls for only a few simple-to-comprehend policies which will cater to the needs of the several hundreds who are in need of life insurance.

      4 May 2018

    • Life Insurance Sector To Benefit From Rise In Savings & Protection Growth

      At the end of FY17, the Indian life insurance industry was valued at Rs.4.2 trillion with 2.72% of insurance penetration and insurance density at $46.5. In the last 10 years, i.e. FY07 to FY17, private life insurance providers have registered nearly 2x growth in comparison to Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) and the CAGR (compound annual growth rate) in terms of total premiums stood at 10.4%. in the coming few years, i.e. FY17 to FY20, the industry expects a similar trend to continue wherein the private insurance players are likely to record CAGR of 18.4%, along with an industry growth of 13.5%.

      Experts have predicted that the steady increase of insurance funds in overall financial saving, along with a growth in financial savings will be responsible for the growth of the life insurance industry. The flexibility and dynamic nature of the Indian capital market is expected to help drive the growth of investment-linked insurance products. As for improvement of insurance penetration and growth of insurance players, these two will be driven by innovations in product design in the insurance protection segment. Experts have estimated that the new business premium (NBP) segment will witness an average growth at the rate of 20% to 30% over a period of the next 3 years.

      2 May 2018

    • ICICI Prudential Sees Rise in New Business; Net Profit Down by 16%

      For the quarter which ended on 31 March 2018, India’s leading insurance provider, ICICI Prudential Life Insurance, has registered a drop of 16% in their net profits which stood at Rs.341 crore. During the previous fiscal, i.e. 2017-18, the company recorded a 4% decline in their net profits which dropped down to Rs.1,620 crore. This drop in net profit was attributed to the strain of increasing new business which resulted from new business growth.

      Mr. Sandeep Batra, executive director, ICICI Prudential Life Insurance, said that the company has been laying increased focus on offering products that are highly customer centric. In the previous fiscal, the firm’s saving business with regards to annualised premium equivalent (APE) rose by 15.4% and APE for the protection business grew by 71.5%. This growth in the APE of protection and savings business, along with improvements in cost-efficiency and persistency have been the key drivers of strong growth in value of new business (VNB).

      ICICI Prudential Life also recorded a 93.1% increase in their VNB which rose to Rs.1,286 crore in the last fiscal, as against Rs.666 crore which was recorded in the previous fiscal. The company also recorded a 16.1% rise in their embedded value, which stood at Rs.18,788 crore; Assets under management (AUM) of ICICI Prudential Life stood at Rs.1.39 lakh crore at the end of the financial year 2017-2018, as compared to Rs.1.22 lakh crore which was recorded for the financial year before that.

      27 April 2018

    • LIC West zone touches record high in new business premium chart

      For the first time in the history of the Indian life insurance sector, LIC’s (Life Insurance Corporation of India) western zonal office has set a milestone in the individual new business premium segment by collecting in the just-concluded financial year which ended on March 31, 2018. The zonal office has brought in a record high first premium of Rs.9,002 crores after successfully selling over 35 lakh policies. This figure in itself is a record breaker and is the highest volume to ever be recorded by any LIC zone at any time.

      LIC’s western zone, which includes states of Maharashtra, Goa, Gujarat, and daman & Diu, have contributed to almost 21% of the overall premium, said Mr. Vipin Anand, Zonal manager (West), LIC. This zone performed especially well in terms of sale of new life insurance policies which were launched by LIC during the second half of the concluded financial year FY18. In the high end segment of the target audience, policies like LIC Jeevan Shiromani and LIC Bima Shree were found to be the most popular. With a min. sum assured of Rs.1 crore and Rs.10 lakh being offered by both these policies respectively, these two policies have been primary contributors to driving the high-volume of sales.

      Another policy which also contributed greatly to the surge in sales was the immediate pension product called LIC Jeevan Akshay VI. This policy alone helped contribute new premium worth Rs.4,600 crore.

      26 April 2018

    • Life insurance plans for senior citizens

      The world of life insurance has much to offer in terms of protection for senior citizens, for whom, the main objective is to ensure that their dependent is provided for in case of their own sudden death. Now, the two major types of plans best suited for senior citizens are whole life insurance plans and term life insurance plans. Besides these 2 major options, the third option available is a Guaranteed Life Insurance Plan.

      Term Life Insurance

      Term plans are pure risk protection plans which provide cover against the biggest risk, of death. These plans have certain set features like a fixed coverage tenure, a high sum assured, and no survival benefits. If they survive the policy term, no benefit payout is made. Term plans are among the most inexpensive forms of life insurance as they do not have any added frills attached. Some term plans may offer additional riders at additional premiums. Some term plans also come with a renewal option wherein the coverage duration can be renewed or extended after it is over, despite the increase in age.

      25 April 2018

    • Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance Goal Assure

      Thanks to recent changes, ULIPS re now gaining popularity among investors for a number of reasons. Bajaj Allianz, one of the market leaders in the life insurance space has recently launched a new ULIP (unit-linked insurance plan) which offers some special features like reimbursement of mortality cost on plan maturity, and zero premium allocation charge. In life insurance jargon, this is a type-1 ULIP wherein if the insured dies during the policy term, their nominee will be entitled to either the fund value or the insurance cover, whichever amount is higher.

      Under this plan, the maximum amount of sum assured offered is at least 10x the annual premium, which can also go up to 20x the annual premium for higher premiums, longer policy terms or younger applicants. From the investment point of view, this plan has a lot to offer. One can choose from 8 funds to invest in, which include one hybrid fund, one liquid fund, 4 equity funds, one index fund, and one debt fund. The fund selection can either be done by the policyholder themselves, or they can choose from 3 types of investment strategies which will pre-allocate funds as per the investor’s goal.

      24 April 2018

    • HDFC Standard Life Q4 Performance

      HDFC Standard Life, which is among India’s leading private sector life insurance company, recently published their annual earnings for FY18. The company has recorded robust performance which can be attributed to strong premium growth and margin improvement. In spite of the premium valuation, the company’s return ratios are also constantly improving.

      In the last quarter of FY18, the insurer posted healthy premium growth which has been driven by a balanced product portfolio. In terms of total premium, the company recorded a 20% year-on-year growth; in terms of new business premium, 32% year-on-year growth was recorded; in terms of renewal premium, the company recorded 11% year-on-year growth. In terms of individual annualised premium equivalent (APE), the insurer recorded a year-on-year growth of 31% which stood at Rs.4,890 crore for FY18.

      23 April 2018

    • Life insurance for senior citizens

      Besides providing life cover, the other important purpose of a life insurance policy for senior citizens is income replacement. Retirement is a time which can cause anxiety for many people as their regular inflow of income or salary stops. While most senior individuals may have few responsibilities by the time they retire, they may have a dependent spouse to support. In case the retired individual passes away, their spouse or dependent may not be financially equipped to take care of their own needs, in which case, an insurance policy can prove to be invaluable.

      Life insurance plans for senior citizens

      The world of life insurance has much to offer in terms of protection for senior citizens, for whom, the main objective is to ensure that their dependent is provided for in case of their own sudden death. Now, the two major types of plans best suited for senior citizens are whole life insurance plans and term life insurance plans. Besides these 2 major options, the third option available is a Guaranteed Life Insurance Plan.

      Term Life Insurance

      Term plans are pure risk protection plans which provide cover against the biggest risk, of death. These plans have certain set features like a fixed coverage tenure, a high sum assured, and no survival benefits. If they survive the policy term, no benefit payout is made. Term plans are among the most inexpensive forms of life insurance as they do not have any added frills attached. Some term plans may offer additional riders at additional premiums. Some term plans also come with a renewal option wherein the coverage duration can be renewed or extended after it is over, despite the increase in age.

      20 April 2018

    • Over 50% of LIC’s Cancer Policies Purchased in Sold In Maharashtra, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu & Kerala

      LIC recently announced a unique cancer cover plan which offered a sum assured of approximately Rs.50 lakh. Within a short span of time, the plan has become quite popular, with 88,750 policies already sold across India. Out of this total, nearly 58.5% of the LIC’s cancer policies have been sold in 4 states – Kerala, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, and Gujarat. In the west zone which comprises of Gujarat and Maharashtra, 26,280 policies have been sold while in the south zone which comprises of Tamil Nadu and Kerala, 25,670 policies have been sold. Both these zones combined account for the majority of the cancer policies that have been purchased. Interestingly, according to a state-level disease burden study which was released in November 2017 indicated that Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, and Kerala, despite occupying a higher spot on the development scale, are rapidly on their way to becoming hot-beds for non-communicable diseases like cancer.

      However, LIC isn’t the only provider to offer cancer insurance. There are a number of private sector insurers like Aditya Birla Health Insurance, Future Generali, ICICI Prudential, Max Life Bupa, HDFC Standar Life, Aegon Life, Bharti AXA, and a few more who also offer cancer cover solutions. some of the popular cancer cover plans currently available in the market include Aegon Life iCancer Insurance Plan, HDFC Life Cancer Care Insurance, ICICI Pru Heart & Cover plan, MaxLife Bupa Critical Illness, Future Generali Cancer Plan, and Bharti Axa Cancer Insurance Plan.

      19 April 2018

    • Life insurance as a tax planning tool

      The start of the financial year is usually a time when people are busy planning their taxes and investments. Tax planning is not something to be taken lightly, but sadly, that’s exactly what happens. Most people end up doing their tax planning in a rush, and as a result, they end up investing in tax-saving investments which would do little good or benefit to them in the long run.

      When it comes to tax saving instruments, life insurance is one of the most popular instruments which hundreds of people chose every year. The popularity of life insurance rests on a number of reasons, two of which are financial security to your loved ones in times of a misfortune, and attractive tax savings on premiums and returns. Different types of life insurance policies offer varying tax benefits. Let’s take a look at these.

      Under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act, policyholders can avail tax deductions on premiums up to Rs.1,50,000 which they pay towards receiving coverage. This can also include premiums paid for life insurance covering one’s spouse or child.

      Under Section 80CCC, those who have taken an annuity or pension plan can avail deduction up to Rs.1 lakh. Upon maturity, 1/3 of the accumulated amount is tax free while the rest is taxable.

      Under Section 10D of the Income Tax Act, the death benefit which the nominee receives after the demise of the insured is also tax-free. Similarly, benefit received under ULIPs and retirement plans is also tax-free as per Section 80CCC.

      18 April 2018

    • Single and unmarried: Do you need life insurance?

      This is a question asked by many prospective life insurance buyers who are single and unmarried. Thing is, when it comes to life insurance, it is always wise to have it, than not. When it comes to buying it, experts have always suggested to buy a policy while you’re still young. This is for a variety of reasons, the most important of which is premiums. When you are young, you are likely to be in good health, with no or few health-related issues. As a result, when you approach an insurer for life cover, you are more likely to be offered a low rate on premiums, as compared to someone who is twice your age will be quoted for getting the same amount of cover. The simple difference here is the age. The older you are, the greater a risk you pose for the insurer, especially in terms of health.

      If you are single and unmarried, you can still buy insurance as the premiums you will get now, will be the lowest. The best time to purchase insurance will be when you have just started working and can afford to pay the premiums. However, the reality is that most of us only think about getting life insurance when we are married, have kids, or are no longer as healthy as before. However, what people fail to realize is that by this time, the premiums you have to pay for getting life cover will be higher than what you’d have paid a few years back, owing to increased age and deteriorating health. Young age is associate with lower mortality, hence the risk associated with the buyer is lower, which translates to lower premiums. As a young adult, you can opt for a policy which gives you the option to increase your sum assured with age, assuming your responsibilities will also increase with age. This way you can ensure that your loved ones will be sufficiently covered at later stages in life.

      17 April 2018

    • Critical illness cover via life insurance

      Critical illness covers are offered not just as add-on covers with life or health insurance, but can also be purchased as stand-alone plans. The purpose of a critical illness cover is to basically offer financial assistance to the insured when they are diagnosed with a critical illness like cancer, the treatment for which can make a big dent in one’s savings. The idea behind the plan is to help the insured take care of the treatment expenses this cover is usually available as a rider at a very reasonable premium. The premium for this policy will be determined based on a number of factors like how many illnesses have been covered under the plan, term of the policy, benefit amount, and the how old the insured is at the time of taking the policy. for instance, an individual of 35 years of age wo has taken a policy with a sum assured of Rs.2 lakh will be paying an annual premium in the range of Rs.300 to Rs.500.

      16 April 2018

    • Standard Chartered, KKR Most Likely To Invest in Max Life

      Earlier this week, Max Financial Services Ltd. announced the decision of its board to approve the fundraising proposals which has been submitted by leading companies like KKR Capital Markets India Pvt. Ltd, Standard Chartered Bank, TPG Global LLC, and a number of other co-investors. The proposals have been submitted for acquisition opportunity. The board of Max financial Services, on March 21, gave their approval to a fund raising of Rs.5,000 crore via debt for investment in Max Life, by way of a qualified institutional placement, or preferential issue in order to partly finance the capital that is needed for funding opportunities related to acquisition.

      13 April 2018

    • April may be the best time to buy life insurance

      There is no wrong time when it comes to purchasing life insurance. Any time is a good time. However, if you are looking for the ‘best’ time to invest in a life insurance policy, April is the month. In India, it has been the trend for many years that people purchase insurance especially towards the close of financial year. Data from each year’s IRDAI report indicates that a majority of the insurance business flows in especially during the close of the financial year i.e. March. The major reason for this is that March is also the tax season when people are looking for avenues to invest in, to save on tax. However, many times, these purchases end up overshadowing the primary purpose of life insurance altogether i.e. providing protection.

      But April, may be the best time to actually purchase an insurance policy, for a number of reasons. April is a relaxed period, after the targets have been met and the pressure on agents and sales people is low. Which means that they are more likely to give you time and answer your queries with patience and make suggestions accordingly. Also, at the beginning of the new financial year, many people would have had received their hikes, which means more money. As a result, even customers are more likely to have not only better liquidity, but also more time to research on and buy the most fitting plan for themselves, for protection purposes.

      12 April 2018

    • Not Compulsory to Link Aadhaar To New Insurance Policies, Clarifies IRDAI

      Sometime in the past few weeks, the Supreme Court of India passed orders for indefinite extension of the deadline for linking of Aadhaar with financial services like mutual funds, insurance policies, existing bank accounts, etc. However, despite that linking of Aadhaar is still compulsory at the time of opening a new bank account. Complaints have also been flowing in regarding undue demand for Aadhaar at for purchase of financial products like mutual funds, and insurance policies.

      Following the orders passed by the Supreme Court, the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) made it clear that customers will not be required to provide their Aadhaar Card details at the time of purchasing a new insurance policy. In light of existing policies, the deadline to link Aadhaar has been extended indefinitely.

      However, the regulatory body offered further clarifications that for purchase of new insurance policies, customers will be granted a period of 6 months, starting from the commencement date of account opening with the insurer, for submitting their Aadhaar details, and PAN (permanent account number) or Form 60, with the insurer.

      In case they do not hold an Aadhaar card, the customer will be required to submit any other ‘officially valid document’ as per the list of documents mentioned in the Prevention of Money-Laundering (Maintenance of Records) Rules, 2005. A per the rules, the officially valid documents’ include driving licence, passport, PAN card, job card issued as per Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA), and the voter identity card issued by the Election Commission of India.

      11 April 2018

    • Short guide on choosing the best life insurance cover

      When it comes to buying life insurance, most people find it challenging to decide the amount of life cover they should purchase. The answer to finding that out lies on evaluating your family’s financial situation.However, there’s more to choosing insurance than just that. Here are some pointers which you must remember.

      Income replacement - Account for replacement of income and expenses involved in enabling your family maintain their lifestyle, even when you cannot provide for them. Do remember that added expenses might accumulate in your absence, like hiring a nanny, or childcare.

      Children’s future expenses – If you have dependents like young children, then their future –related expenses must also be taken into account while deciding insurance cover. Consider expenses like their school/college fees, marriage expenses, helping them set up their business, etc.

      Loans taken – If you have taken a loan and pass away suddenly without repaying it fully, the burden of the repayment will fall on your loved ones. Take into account any unpaid loans or liabilities in your coverage amount estimate.

      Retirement funds for your spouse – When deciding insurance coverage, don’t forget to take into account your retirement. If you are not around but have a dependent like a spouse, then make sure you create a fund so that your spouse can have a comfortable retirement.

      10 April 2018

    • How life insurance makes life simpler

      The concept of life insurance has been developed to protect against financial loss that is caused due to an unfortunate event like death of a family’s breadwinner. In case the insured dies suddenly, their nominee/beneficiary will be entitled to receive the sum assured benefit which will help them take care of their lifestyle and expenses for some time to come. We all know that life insurance is essentially a contract between the insurer and the insured. Some of the important components of this contract include:

      Death benefit - This is the pre-specified amount which the insurer pays to the nominee in case of the insured’s death.

      Premium payment – Premiums for a life insurance plan are determined based on a variety of factors like the age of the insured, their occupation, their income, their health condition, lifestyle habits, etc.

      Cash value – Life insurance policies act similar to a savings account wherein the insured can build a corpus of funds which they can later use to take care of their needs.

      6 April 2018

    • HDFC Standard Life Insurance Crosses Rs.1 trillion mark in market cap

      HDFC Standard Life Insurance Co. Ltd, one of India’s leading life insurance providers, has recently become part of the select group of organizations whose market capitalisation has crossed the Rs.1 trillion mark on the exchange. The shares of the company recently traded at an all-time high of Rs.497, which was 3.4% higher than the last close, as per the data released from BSE. Since it has been listed, HDFC Standard life’s share has gained more than 71.3%. This year alone, the company’s share has risen 23%. HDFC first launched their IPO on 16 November 2017 and priced their issue at the rate of Rs.290/share. The IPO saw subscription of over 5 times.

      For the quarter ended December, HDFC Standard Life recorded net profits worth Rs.207.32 crore, which is a 14.8% increase from the corresponding quarter from last year when the recorded profits stood at Rs.180.63 crore. The insurer has also registered a 33% rise in new business premium during this period, which stood at Rs.7,070 crore, as opposed to Rs.5,330 crore in the corresponding period last year. The company’s assets under management (AUM) has also grown by 27%, which is much faster than the average of 20-24% that has been recorded in the past few years.

      5 April 2018

    • How to decide which insurance scheme is best suited for you

      Despite being filled with plenty of memorable moments, the nature of life is best described as unpredictable. The purpose of having an insurance policy is to protect your loved ones against the adverse financial consequences which are brought about due to misfortunes such as death of an income earner. When it comes to purchasing insurance, there are many options available in the market currently. However, choosing the right policy is paramount to receiving adequate protection that is suited to your particular life situation.

      Buy insurance while you are still young When it comes to insurance, it is best to purchase it while you are still young. The earlier you purchase an insurance policy, the lesser you will have to pay towards getting cover. This is simply because younger individuals are more likely to be healthier, and hence can benefit from lower premium rates when purchasing insurance. If you are in your 20s, it is advisable to go for a term insurance plan, which provides pure risk protection for a fixed number of years, and for a high sum assured. In case the policyholder dies before the policy is over, the nominee is entitled to the death benefit.

      Purchase insurance in-line with your financial goals Don’t buy insurance without assessing your future financial requirements and goals. When purchasing insurance, give priority to plans like life insurance and health insurance. Purchase riders which you think will be necessary in providing adequate protection to your loved ones.

      Buy insurance only as per your needs Before purchasing insurance, do your research about the kinds of plans that are available out there. You do not have to stick to conventional plans which offer basic protection. There are a number of insurance covers which have been designed to cover specific situations or risks. for instance, insurance cover for misplaced home or vehicle keys, cover for getting a second medical opinion in case of health insurance, etc.

      4 April 2018

    • How to make a death claim in case of life insurance

      The purpose of a life insurance policy is to protect the financial security of the insured’s family, in case of their (insured’s) death. The nominee chosen under the policy is the one who is will be responsible for filing a death claim in the event of the insured’s death. The procedure for filing a death claim is given under.

      Inform the agent – The first and foremost step in case of filing a death claim is to inform your agent about the death. The agent will then assist you with the documentation and information which must be provided in support of the claim.

      Claim intimation – After the agent has been informed, the nominee must inform the insurer about the claim as well. The claim intimation must provide details of the cause, date, and place of death.

      Claim form – The next step of the process is to obtain and fill up the claim form. This form is usually downloadable from the insurer’s website or from their branch. This form must be filled up completely with correct information, along with the supporting documents which have been asked for.

      Documents required – In case of filing for a death claim, nominees will usually be asked to provide the insured’s Death Certificate, the original policy document, Deed of assignments (if any), and the hospital Discharge form. In case there is no nominee assigned to a life insurance policy, the person making the claim must attach adequate proof that they are legally entitled to file for a claim.

      Verification of claim – After all the necessary paperwork has been received, the insurer will then proceed to verify the claim. During this process, they may ask the nominee/claimant to provide additional documents, if necessary. If the claim is found to be genuine. The insurer will proceed to pay the death benefit amount, and if there are any discrepancies found, the claim will be rejected.

      3 April 2018

    • Life insurance persistency remains low in India

      Life insurance persistency numbers in the Indian insurance industry are yet to come up to global statistics. As per the Handbook of Statistics which was published in 2017, statistics indicate that one in 3 insurance policies don’t make it past the 5 years mark, in terms of persistency. Compared to the global average, these numbers reflect very poorly, especially considering that globally, life policies manage to retain nearly 90% of customers after one year of sale, while the average persistency after 5 years stands at 65%. Persistency ratio or persistency is basically the term which defines the length of time that a customer holds on to their insurance policy. This is measured in terms of policy renewals done by the customer for their policy.

      The downside of this doesn’t just affect the insurer, but also the policyholder, as they stand to lose their money by way of hefty exit penalties. However, all is not lost. Persistency numbers seem to showing an uptick. The average persistency ratio for the 13th month in FY16 stood at 61%. This number rose to 65% in FY17.

      2 April 2018

    • 5 mistakes to avoid when buying a Life Insurance policy

      There are a number of ways one can save for the future, from the conventional mode of just parking money aside in a savings account, to investing in savings schemes - which come with an interest over deposits and tax benefits, investing in equities, bonds and other such market-linked instruments to buying a Life Insurance policy. Considering that investing in a Life Insurance policy is a life-long investment, one has to make the right decisions and avoid the most common mistakes we have come across when buying a Life Insurance police. Read below and make sure you do not make these mistakes when you purchase a Life Insurance policy.

      Since you’re probably going to do this just once in your life, ensure that you read the fine print of the policy conditions before making the purchase. Make sure that the policy conditions suit you, if not, halt the process of buying a policy till you’re satisfied. Apart from this, ensure that the personal details that you have entered are accurate - including the details of your nominee or dependents. Ensuring that these vital details are correct will avoid any future confusion.

      Either before or just after you have purchased the policy, make sure that you know exactly what you are in for. Make sure that everything as stated in the policy is what you agreed upon before signing it - from the sum assured, estimated maturity value, estimated death benefit, premium cost, name of the nominee and so on.

      As soon as you have bought the Life Insurance policy, make sure that you share all the required details with your nominee[s] and dependents. Take them through the details of the policy and most importantly through the claim process and what they’re expectation should be.

      As soon as you purchase a Life Insurance policy, the Insurance company will grant you a free-look period of either 15-30 days. Make sure you utilise this period to assess whether the policy suits you or not. If not, you can return the policy within the free-look period for not cost at all.

      30 March 2018

    • How AI Will Lead Life Insurance In The Future

      Artificial intelligence isn’t an alien concept and many industries across the world actively use it in today’s date. Among them is the life insurance industry, and experts in the field are of the view that AI will help revolutionize the way business is carried out. There are several insurance providers across the world who are already utilizing AI for the purpose of risk analysis, which enables them to determine premiums with greater accuracy, based on data. It is worth noting that machines are now rapidly picking up the job of spotting discrepancies in premium assessments, applications, and claims. Normally, an insurer will cater to thousands of clients, and the possibility of human error in terms of claim processing is only natural. However, AI is helping insurers overcome these human errors and help streamline the insurance process.

      Besides risk analysis, many life insurance providers are also utilizing AI for reviewing claims and look for details which could help detect fraud, details which are likely to be missed by claims review experts. With the introduction of AI, insurers have already seen a drop in the instances of fraudulent claim payments, and in turn, help insurers evaluate and set a realistic premium for applicants.

      Another aspect where AI is proving to be invaluable is in increasing efficiency. Typically, employees will easily take months to look through the thousands of claim-related documents. However, with the help of AI, this tedious and time-consuming job can be made much simpler. There are AI programs which can help sort through thousands of documents within just a few minutes, spotting data points and identifying errors or inconsistencies which can easily be overlooked by an employee.

      29 March 2018

    • Who needs life insurance

      ‘Do I even need life insurance?’ This is a question which almost every prospective life insurance buyer has in their mind before buying a policy. And it is a well-founded one. While experts say that most families do not have the adequate resources to recover from a tragedy, critics hold the view that insurance is an unnecessary expense, as the chances of usually very slim.

      The truth of the matter actually is, that not every person needs to have life insurance. As per the general rule, only those people who have dependents need to get life insurance to protect the financial security of their dependents. Those who do not have any dependents, do not require insurance cover. In a typical scenario, dependents usually include children, spouse, siblings, or aged parents.

      The purpose of having life insurance is to basically provide your dependents with financial assistance to enable them to continue their lives, even after you are no longer supporting them. It is most ideal for young professionals who may be supporting dependents. In case of death, the life insurance policy will provide much needed financial support to the dependents for the coming few years.

      Life insurance is also essential for stay-at-home parents, who also have considerable financial value in a household. In the absence of a parent, the surviving spouse will have to employ a caretaker to raise the children, and that can cost a considerable amount of money. Therefore, even stay-at-home parents require insurance.

      Life insurance is also essential for those who are nearing retirement, and wish to cover their spouse in case of misfortune. A life insurance policy can provide added financial assistance to the surviving spouse to take care of their needs.

      28 March 2018

    • Make sure your Life Insurance Policy is adequate

      As with investments in stocks, mutual funds, saving schemes and so on, investing in a Life Insurance policy is a long-term investment as well. Before purchasing a policy, one really needs to look at the purpose of buying a particular type of insurance policy. A lot of policyholders purchase Life Insurance policy just probably they are getting a good deal on the premiums or either to just save on tax.Considering that one is purchasing a to financial secure him/her family, a few things need to be kept in mind before buying the policy and during its tenure.

      To ensure that your Life Insurance policy offers adequate coverage for you and your family in case of an emergency, one needs to make sure that the sum assured or the maturity benefit or death benefit is at least 15-20 times one’s current income.

      Consider expenses such as one’s wedding, child’s birth and education, purchasing a house and so on.

      Make sure that your evaluate the efficacy of your insurance policy every 3-5 years - all while considering the market inflation. If you do feel that your final payout at maturity will not suffice taking note of the inflation percentage, make sure that you purchase various add-ons and extra coverage to boost your maturity value.

      Buy an insurance policy as early as possible. One should buy an insurance policy when they are younger as the younger a person is, the cheaper are the premiums. For those older who wish to buy an insurance policy, the premiums will certainly be a lot more expensive.

      27 March 2018

    • Why you should buy insurance under the Married Women’s Property (MWP) Act

      For anyone who wishes to buy an insurance policy, open a savings account, or enroll themselves in a savings scheme and so on, when filling in the application he/she will have to assign a nominee of their choice. The nominee can either be the dependent of the account or policyholder, a spouse, parents, children, etc. The reason for the nomination is that if by chance the account or policyholder passes away, all the proceeds are passed on to the assigned nominee or the legal heir of the concerned person. Recently, the Government of India has rolled out the Married Women’s Property (MWP) Act, in which the right of the wife/spouse is protected by law when it comes to the proceeds of her late husband being passed to her and her children.

      26 March 2018

    • Insurance industry Likely To Grow To $280 Billion By 2020, Says Vice President

      In light of the country’s steady economic growth, the Vice President of India, Mr. M. Venkaiah Naidu recently said that the Indian insurance industry is all set for tremendous growth in the coming few years. His prediction was that the insurance industry will grow to $280 billion by the year 2020, from its last valuation of $84.72 billion from 2017. The Vice President said that investments which have been made by insurers under multiple sectors in the FY 2016-17 amounted to Rs.30.76 lakh crore, out of which, over Rs.2.40 lakh crore was done in the infrastructure sector.

      Speaking about the likely growth, Mr. Naidu said that it may be attributed to the growing number of people in the middle class population of the country, and the general rise in people’s disposable incomes, along with increased awareness towards the importance of having insurance coverage.

      19 February 2018

    • Ensure You Get These 3 Figures Right When Buying Life Insurance

      The demand for life insurance has been growing with every passing year, as more and more people are coming to realize its importance. Out of the many types of life insurance plans available, term plans are one of the most popular owing to their various benefits such as affordable premiums, high amount of sum assured, easy to understand, no hidden charges, minimal documentation, no medical check-ups, etc. Before purchasing life insurance, it is important for every buyer to assess their needs and then decide the plan which is most suited for them. When buying a term insurance plan, there are 3 important things which every buyer must remember.

      Sum assured: When deciding your coverage sum assured amount, never just pick a random figure which you think may be sufficient. There is a lot of homework that must be done before you decide your plan coverage. The failure to do so, can often lead you to being under-insured. To ascertain a sum assured amount that is sufficient, you must take into account your assets, liabilities, your family’ lifestyle expenses, your probable future needs, cost of inflation, and any other expenses which are likely to occur. The most often used rule of thumb is to take a sum insured amount that is 10x to 12x of your current annual income.

      Policy term: Ideally, your policy term must be up to the time period till you have dependents. Say, you have young children who are likely to become financially independent in another 10 years, then your policy term must be for at least 10 years. Another factor to consider when deciding your policy term is your retirement. Choose a policy term which covers you up till retirement. For instance, you are 40 years old, and the retirement age for your profession is 60 years, then you must take a policy for a term of at least 20 years.

      Premium paying term: The premium payment term is the period for which premiums have to be paid on the policy. This term may differ from the policy term in many cases. Premium payment can usually be done in 2 ways – single premium payment, or regular premium payment (monthly, quarterly, yearly, etc.). under the regular premium payment option, you are usually allowed to choose the premium payment term which may be equal or less than the policy term.

      14 February 2018

    • Max Life Emerges As The Likeliest Candidate To Buy IDBI Federal Life

      According to various sources, it has come to light that Max Life Insurance Co. Ltd is going to be the most likely candidate to get a majority stake in IDBI Federal Life Insurance Co. Ltd., which is currently valued at approximately Rs.6,000 crore. Max Life is most likely to acquire a majority 51% stake in the firm.

      IDBI Federal Life Insurance has multiple stakeholders such as IDBI Bank Ltd., which holds a 48% stake, while Ageas SA/NV (a leading Belgian life insurer) holds 26% stake. Various insurance companies have expressed interest to buy assets in IDBI Federal Life’s insurance. These include bigwigs like Tata AIA Life Insurance Co. Ltd, Kotak Mahindra Life Insurance Co. Ltd, Aditya Birla Sun Life Insurance Co. Ltd and Exide Life Insurance Co. Ltd. The potential advisor appointed by IDBI Federal for this deal is likely to be JP Morgan. Also, the firm is keen on concluding the deal before March 31, to further save on taxes, said a source privy to the discussions.

      13 February 2018

    • Reviving a lapsed life insurance policy

      Life insurance is a contract between an insurer and the policyholder wherein the latter commits to pay a certain sum of money on a pre-decided basis, in exchange for receiving life insurance cover from the insurer. However, if the policyholder fails to make premium payments on their policy, the policy will lapse after a certain time period and cease to provide coverage. In such a scenario, the policy needs to be revived, subject to certain conditions as laid down by the insurer. Here are some points to guide you on reviving a lapsed policy.

      Time If a policy has lapsed, it can be revived only if it has not crossed the maximum revival time period as stated by the insurer, which is usually two years from the date of the first unpaid premium. Also, revival of a policy will be dependent on its type.

      Get revival quote from insurer For the revival of a lapsed policy, the policyholder needs to get a revival quote for the policy from the insurer. This quote is usually the collective sum of overall premiums that are unpaid for the policy and need to be paid to the insurer for reviving the policy.

      Declaration of good health For revival of a lapsed policy, insurers may ask the policyholder to submit a declaration of good health, depending on the sum assured under the policy and the age of the insured. A medical check-up will be necessary if the policyholder has an adverse medical history or the requirement for the same is compulsorily needed for revival.

      Unpaid premium For the revival of a lapsed policy, the insured will be required to make premium payments for all the due premiums that are remaining to be paid on the policy, along with any interest or penalty charges that the insurer has levied towards the revival.

      Penalty As mentioned above, for the revival of a lapsed policy, the insurer may charge a penalty amount, wither on the period of policy lapse, or on the premium amount payable for policy revival.

      12 February 2018

    • Shriram Life Insurance partners With SureBuddy to offer free insurance cover

      Shriram Life Insurance recently announced that it has entered into a partnership with SureBuddy, following which it will be offering insurance cover worth Rs.50,000 to SureBuddy users, free of cost. The life insurance policy being offered will be accessible on the Android app called 'FREE Life Insurance powered by SureBuddy'. However, this free life insurance coverage comes with advertisements which will be sent to the user’s mobile phone. Mr. Casparus Jacobus Hendrik Kromhout, MD and CEO, Shriram Life Insurance Company said that this free life insurance service has been provided with the objective of making life insurance accessible to a larger group of people with the help of a medium which has the power to also transform the insurance scenario in the country.

      9 February 2018

    • What insurance agents won’t tell you when buying insurance

      When it comes to buying insurance, one has to be cautious and smart. Many people end up taking help from life insurance agents to guide them in choosing the right plan. However, ne must be quite careful when employing the assistance of insurance agents who may be associated with a particular insurer. They will try to attract your attention to plans which are bundled together and give the impression that you can maximize your income two-fold or make great savings on taxes. However, these ‘bundled’ plans are usually traditional plans where there is no transparency provided on the costs or the investment returns.

      8 February 2018

    • 2018 Will Be A Year Of Consolidation For Insurers

      When it comes to the sustenance of the insurance sector in 2018, there are multiple factors which will pay a vital role. These include the possibility of disruptions, customer awareness and perception of life insurance, and certain macro-economic factors. At present, the penetration of and awareness about the importance of having life insurance is very low in India. The life insurance industry in India has one of the lowest margins in terms of New Business Margins. The protection gap too, is quite low. All these factors have given rise to multiple challenges for companies which are looking to expand their footprint in a financially viable manner.

      The effective solution to these challenges lies in increased digitisation of financial services and creating a deeper digital footprint which customers leave behind. Speaking of the macroeconomic front, the larger economy is likely to gain momentum. The impact left behind by the implementation of demonetisation, and GST (Goods and services Tax) has been absorbed by the industry. Financialisation of savings is expected to continue to aid the growth of the life insurance industry.

      As of now, India has 24 insurance companies who are working in a highly competitive and capital-intensive market. in a scenario where the top 5 insurance companies hold nearly 75% of the industry share, whereas the remaining players are struggling to sustain themselves, consolidation is inevitable and will only help the industry, and the customers as well.

      18 January 2018

    • Life Insurance Being Considered For Protection More Than Just As A Tax-saving Tool

      For years, life insurance has been seen as more of a tax saving tool which hordes of people would invest in at the time of filing their taxes. There was little awareness regarding the true purpose of insurance and a majority of people have made hasty decisions regarding the purchase of a life insurance policy. However, things have changed in the past few years, thanks to increased awareness about the importance of having life insurance as a protection tool. As per statistics, there was an overall fall in the number of life insurance policies which were sold during 2016-17. However, the overall cover value increased by nearly 14% which basically indicates that the Indian insurance industry is now evolving to be perceived as not just a tax saving tool, but essentially as a life protection instrument.

      As per the most recent annual report submitted by IRDAI, the collective number of policies which have been sold dropped to 264.56 lakh as opposed to 267.38 lakh policies which were sold a year ago. However, the amount of total cover that was provided went up from Rs.3,66,943.23 crore to a total of Rs.4,18,476.62 crore. Out of the total 264.65 lakh new life insurance policies that given during the year, nearly 201.32 lakh had been issued by LIC, whose share dropped by 2.02% points over the past year.

      Speaking of total premium income, LIC reported a drop in market share which stood at the 72.61% in 2015-16 but fell to 71.81% in 2016-17. However, private insurers witnessed a rise in their market share which went up from 27.39% to 28.19%. By March 2017, the Indian insurance industry comprised of a total of 62 insurers, out of which 24 were life insurance companies, 23 were general insurance companies, and 6 stand-alone health insurance companies and 9 re-insurance companies, which also included foreign reinsurers' branches and Lloyd's India.

      11 January 2018

    • What To Keep In Mind When Buying Term Insurance

      Term insurance is known to be the purest form of life insurance. Considering that, it is one of the most ideal types of life insurance that an individual can take to provide dedicated protection to his/her family against financial difficulties that may arise due to unforeseen circumstances. Term insurance is also one of the most popular type of life insurance as it is highly affordable and simple to understand. Since it does not involve any investment element, the only charges you pay for are towards protection of your loved ones and nothing else. So, if you are in the market for a term insurance plan, here are some things which you must keep in mind.

      Who is it ideal for?

      A term plan is designed to provide financial assistance to the beneficiary of a policyholder if the policyholder has passed away before the end of the policy term. There is only a death benefit which is offered in the event of the death of the policyholder. Term plans do not offer any survival benefit. However, policyholders can avail tax benefits on premiums paid towards a term plan. However, this is not the reason why one must take a term plan. A term plan is most suited to an individual who is financially supporting dependents such as a spouse, aged parents or children. In case of the policyholder’s death, their dependents will stand to suffer financially and that is exactly what a term plan prevents from happening. However, if you are an individual who does not support any dependents, you do not need a term plan. This may also apply to a retired person or someone who is not earning an income.

      Are you eligible for a term plan?

      The fundamental purpose of insurance is to cover risks. Underwriting is the process using which an insurer determines the risk associated with an applicant and also to fix the premium to charge on a policy. Assessing an applicant’s health is an important part of the underwriting process. When buying a term plan, most applicants are asked to take a medical test. However, buying term insurance is usually a cheaper proposition for younger applicants who are more likely to be in better health in their early years as compared to someone buying term insurance at the age of 40 years and may be suffering from some illness. Besides your health, there are a few other things which play an important part in the underwriting process. These include your employment history, your annual income, your employment position, etc. While the aforementioned factors do not have a direct impact on your insurance eligibility, they do influence the amount of coverage that the insurer decides to provide you with.

      11 January 2018

    • Axis Bank looking to acquire life insurance business, no further talks of joint venture with Max Life

      According to reports from official sources, Axis Bank is currently scouting the market to acquire a life insurance business. The decision for the same was approved by the bank’s committee in the December quarter. An official privy to the developments said that Axis Bank has recently enlisted the help of a leading US-based investment bank to look for a suitable midsize player for acquisition. The likely choices which have emerged so far include IDBI Federal Life Insurance and Tata AIA. A bid has already been submitted for IDBI Federal Life Insurance.

      The decision taken by Axis Bank to forego any talks of a joint venture with Max Life were triggered by the insurer’s decision to exit the life insurance segment by way of a merger with HDFC Life Insurance. However, the joint venture plans between Max Life and HDFC Standard Life also did not materialize. Also, after Axis Bank made a bid for IDBI Federal Life insurance, they did have some preliminary talks with Max Life as well.

      According to an official privy to the discussion, Axis Bank did have an initial discussion regarding the life insurance business acquisition with Max Life Insurance. However, due to different standpoints on valuation, the discussion was not held any further. Instead, Axis Bank has now revealed plans to branch out on its own in terms of insurance, considering that insurance has been somewhat of a golden goose for some of the country’s leading banks involved in the financial services sector.

      10 January 2018

    • What You Should Know About Taking A Loan Against Insurance

      When it comes to life insurance policies, many people are unaware of the fact that they can also take a loan against their life insurance policy. Loans on life insurance policies are often provided by the insurance provider themselves or by a bank/NBFC (non-banking financial company) who provide the loan against a security. However, the facility to avail a loan against a life insurance policy is not applicable for term insurance policies and ULIPS. Here are some quick points to remember with regard to taking a loan against your life insurance policy.

      Quantum of loan

      The maximum amount that you can avail under this type of a loan will be dependent not only on the type of life insurance policy you have but also the policy’s Surrender value. The loan amount sanctioned under such a loan is usually a fixed percentage of the policy’s Surrender value. In the case of traditional money back policies or endowment policies, the loan amount may be as much as 80% to 90% of policy’s surrender value. Some insurers may decide on the maximum quantum of loan based on payment of a minimum of 50% of the total premiums.

      Documents Required

      To apply for the loan, the policyholder must fill a loan application form. The completed form must be submitted along with the original policy document, payment receipt for the loan amount, and the copy of a cancelled cheque. This is the basic documentation that is required. However, the requirements in terms of documents may vary from insurer to insurer.

      3 January 2018

    • Max Financial & ICICI Prudential Life Among Top Bets Under Listed Life Insurance Space

      In the listed insurance space, two of India’s biggest life insurers, ICICI Prudential Life Insurance Co. Ltd and Max Financial Services Ltd. have clinched the top bets, which has definitely strengthened the case for private insurers. As per data obtained from Bloomberg, out of 16 analysts who tracked ICICI Prudential Life, 14 gave it a rating for buy or outperform, and the remaining two gave it a ‘hold’ rating.

      The current scenario is definitely favourable for private life insurers, as the data has indicated. JM Financial Institutional Securities Ltd. noted that the average premium equivalent (APE) market share of private insurers went up from 30% from a year ago to 51.2% in November, in contrast to the industry growth of 24%.

      2 January 2018

    • Should you always opt for an insurance firm with a high claim settlement ratio?

      Insurance firms usually advertise their high claim settlement ratio on their website as a way of catching the attention of prospective policy buyers. While a high claim settlement ratio is certainly desirable and an important parameter that to consider before purchasing a life insurance policy, it is not, in fact, advisable to make a decision solely on the basis of the claim settlement ratio reported by the insurer.

      Firstly, the settlement ratio of an insurance company is indicative of their underwriting guidelines. It is very likely that the insurer might revise these guidelines every few years, thereby impacting the claim settlement ratio for the upcoming years. Also, the claim settlement ratio alone is not indicative of the insurer’s effectiveness, unless it is looked at in context with the overall number of claims that have been settled, total number of policies, nature of the insurance product, etc.

      Thus, while the claim settlement ratio is a good yardstick to measure the effectiveness of the insurer, it shouldn’t be the sole parameter that you consider. As a policy buyer, when researching different plans available in the market, make sure to read through the insurer’s history and background. Further, at the time of purchasing the policy, ensure to disclose all relevant information about yourself to the insurer. By doing so, rather than relying solely on the insurer’s likelihood to settle the claim, you are also ensuring that your claim has a good chance of being honoured by the insurer.

      9 January 2018

    • The benefits of Limited Premium Payment Insurance Plans

      Traditionally, when a policy buyer purchased a life insurance policy, he/she was expected to pay the due premiums for the duration of the policy tenure. However, nowadays, life insurance providers are also offering insurance products with limited premium payment terms. Thus, when you purchase a limited premium payment policy, you are essentially only paying the due premiums for a limited period of time, but are eligible to avail the benefits of the policy for the complete duration of the policy tenure.

      Limited premium payment plans are also not exclusive to any one type of insurance product. Insurers offer endowment plans, ULIPs, term insurance plans, etc. with a limited premium payment tenure.

      When should you purchase a limited premium payment policy?

      While any individual can choose to purchase a limited premium payment policy, such policies are best suited for individuals who don’t have a steady source of income or are self-employed. These plans can also be opted for by individuals who are planning to retire in a few years and by those who have suddenly witnessed a rise in their disposable income. Individuals who may not be able to pay the due premiums for the duration of the policy tenure can also choose a policy with a limited premium payment tenure.

      There are several advantages in purchasing a limited premium plan provided the policy matches your needs and financial goals. However, before purchasing such a policy, it is essential to take note of the fact that the premiums rates are likely to be higher than normal since the policyholder is only paying the due premiums for a limited period of time. Thus, if you can afford the higher premium rate, a limited premium payment policy can give you the same returns as a normal insurance policy.

      8 January 2018

    • Premiums Of Government Insurance Schemes May be Hiked In FY19

      Government–run insurance schemes such as the Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana and Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana are more than likely to witness a hike in premiums in the next financial year. An official in the private life segment said that proposals have been sent to the concerned officials to revise the premiums since claims on these policies have been high. Currently, the Jeevan Jyoti Bima (JJB) which is a term insurance plan charges a yearly premium of Rs.330. The accident insurance plan named Suraksha Bima Yojana (SBY) charges an annual premium of Rs.12 only.

      The personal accident scheme run by the government has run into loss ratios of over 200%. However, a senior official privy to these discussions commented that the premium hike cannot be too sharp as it might hurt the policyholders. The officials are concerned that the rise in premium has a high chance of affecting the rate of policy renewals. In the life insurance segment, there have been a fair number of fraudulent claims which were rejected. Keeping this in mind, the officials are likely to also make changes to these insurance schemes which will also help them in dealing with fraudsters.

      5 January 2018

    • Budget 2018: Centre Must Take Steps To Promote Growth Of Life Insurance Segment

      Life insurance is one of the most popular and also important sectors in India. However, at present, the insurance industry in India is being greatly affected by a large number of disruptions. Keeping in mind the upcoming Budget 2018, a special committee set up by the insurance regulator (IRDAI) put forth a list of suggested changes for the life insurance segment. For the approaching Union Budget, the committee suggested that the Modi government increase the Life Insurance premium tax deduction under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act, 1961.

      Currently, the law allows a deduction of up to Rs.1,50,000 for investments that have been done in multiple avenues such as mutual funds, life insurance plans, pension plans, etc. the deduction is also available in case of other expenses such as tuition fees, etc. However, to encourage the growth of investment in the life insurance segment, the committee has suggested that the limit of deduction under life insurance be increased. They suggested that this can be done by introducing a separate deductible limit for life insurance premium for up to Rs.200,000 and also enhance the overall investment limit under the provisions of the Income Tax Act, 1961 to up to Rs.3,00,000.

      In their report, the IRDAI committee emphasized that a change is much needed in the current investment norms in order to improve returns that are generates by funds while also considering the risks associated with each asset class. In addition to changes in the deduction limit, the committee also suggested that the mandatory proportion of G-secs be lowered in Pension 7 General Annuity Fund, and the Life Fund so as to shift the focus on and increase exposure of other lesser known high-yield assets such as equity, property or high rated corporate bonds.

      4th January 2018

      • LIC has the best claim settlement and grievance settlement ratio

        Earlier this month, the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) published the annual report of grievance settlement and claim settlement ratio of all insurance companies. The claim settlement ratio is generally one of the deciding factors that help prospective policyholders choose the right insurer. And LIC has once again outshined the rest of the companies.

        LIC, the only insurance company that offers a sovereign guarantee for all policies, has a score of 98.31% in terms of claim settlement in the fiscal year 2016-17 i.e. 98.31% of the total number of claims made were settled and only 0.97% were rejected.

        19 January 2018

      • Insurance providers need to ensure that prospective customers meet policy parameters, says Consumer Forum

        The Consumer Forum recently ruled that insurance providers selling insurance policies need to ensure that buyers undergo a medical examination before letting them purchase the policy, in an effort to reduce instances of claims being rejected as a result of concealment or non-disclosure of vital health-related data on the policy buyer’s part. Thus, the Consumer Forum has now said that insurance providers have to make sure that all policy buyers meet the eligibility criteria and parameters that are specified under the policy, including the screening of previous medical conditions like cancer, diabetes, hypertension, etc.

        News and updates on Cancer insurance

        15 January 2018

      • HDFC Standard Life’s New Business Premium increases by 33%

        HDFC Standard Life Insurance, which is the third-largest, private-sector life insurance provider in India, has reported a 33% growth in their new business premiums, for the period that ended in December 2017. The insurer’s new business premium rose from Rs.5,330 crore, which was collected last year, to Rs.7,070 crore.

        While the majority of the insurer’s product mix was made-up of market-linked insurance products, protection products, too, saw an increase of 27.3%, in terms of the new business premiums. As a result of the steep growth reported for all products, the life insurance firm’s assets under management (AUM) rose by 27%.

        News and updates on term insurance

        24 January 2018

      • Forty applications for the post of new chairman of IRDA

        T S Vijayan, the chairman of the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India, will leave office on February 21, 2018. Nearly 40 experienced personnel from the field of insurance have applied for the post.

        The initial notification stated that the applicants should have at least a 30- year work experience, should have been the secretary to the government of India or held an equivalent position at the Centre or the State. V K Sharma, the chairman of LIC and G Srinivasan, the chairman of New India Assurance are a few among others who have applied for the post of chairman of the IRDA.

        The revised notification by the department of financial services stated that chairmen of public sector general insurance companies and senior executives of LIC can also submit applications. CEOs of large financial institutions from the private sector can also apply. The term of the chairman is for a period of 5 years and he/she is authorised to a sum of Rs.4.5 lakh per month.

        News and updates on term insurance

        18 January 2018

      • Government term insurance schemes might see an increase in premium rates in FY19

        The government-backed term insurance scheme, Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana, and the accident insurance scheme, Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana, will likely see a slight increase in premium rates, in the next fiscal year. It is reported that this change in premium rates is attributed to the high number of claims settled.

        Currently, the Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana plan is offered at an annual premium of Rs.330, whereas the Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana is offered for a nominal rate of Rs.12 p.a. Thus, the loss ratio on the accident insurance scheme has crossed 200%. However, in an effort to still keep the two schemes affordable, there will only be a minimal hike in the premiums for both schemes.

        9 January 2018

      • SBI Life Insurance posts 21% growth in Q3 net profit

        In its third quarter which ended on 31 Dec 2017, SBI Life insurance, one of India's biggest private life insurance player, recorded 21% increase in their net profit, which stood at Rs.230.28 crore. In the corresponding period for the previous financial year, the insurer recorded a net profit of Rs.190.43 crore. The insurer's annualised premium equivalent (APE) from new business also increased by 39.3% and was recorded to be Rs.5850 crore till the period up to 31 Dec, 2017.

        Besides this, the insurer also recorded an increase in its quality of business which was indicated by their 13th month persistency which stood at 81.5% on 31 Dec 2017. For the same period in the last fiscal, the figure was reported to be 79.8%. SBI Life also registered a 32.7% growth in its renewal premium which stood at Rs.8,860 crore as on 31 Dec 2017. There was also a dip in the company's operating expense ratio which went down from 8.9% in April-Dec 2016, to 7.7% in April to December 2017.

        The insurer's assets under management (AUM) rose by 23% touching Rs.1.16 lakh crore as on 31 Dec 2017, and net worth grew by 20.6%, touching a figure of Rs.6,440 crore as of 31 Dec 2017. To top it all, the insurer recorded a solvency ratio of 2.06, as compared to 1.5 which is the minimum required as per IRDAI regulations.

        31 January 2018

      • HDFC's profits in Q3 up by 233% post life insurance stake sale

        HDFC, which is a leading housing finance company in India and a key stakeholder in HDFC Life, has announced a net profit amounting to Rs.5,670 crore for its third quarter that ended in December 2017. This was a 233% increase over what the company announced for the same period, last fiscal. This extraordinary surge can be attributed to the gains made by the company from selling a part of its stake in HDFC Life in an Initial Public Offering (IPO). The company has also been offering affordable loans, which have also increased the income earned from operations.

        31 January 2018

      • Max Life launches first-ever online ULIP

        Max Life, which is one of the leading insurance firms in the country, recently launched a Unit Linked Insurance Plan (ULIP) called Max Life Online Savings Plan. This policy will be available only through online channels. The policy was launched in an effort to help policyholders create long-term wealth and to help them meet key milestones in their lives.

        The policy, which comes in two variants, provides maximum returns to customers by way of their Zero Policy Administration and Zero Premium Allocation charges. Policy buyers can also choose any policy tenure between 5 and 30 years and a suitable premium payment term. In terms of the fund options, the insurer offers policy buyers the option to choose from up to five funds, which include debt funds, equity funds, and balanced funds.  

        24 January 2018

      • Reliance Nippon Life ties-up with Bank of Maharashtra

        Reliance Nippon Life Insurance has recently signed a bancassurance agreement with the Bank of Maharashtra. Bank of Maharashtra, which has over 1,880 branches across the country, will help Reliance Nippon Life to further their customer outreach. This partnership will also complement the existing financial solutions offered by the bank, including the savings, protection, and investment solutions.

        Reliance Nippon is currently one of the leading private life insurers in India. The company already has a large distribution network with over 700 branches across the country, and more than 10 million policyholders.  

        23 January 2018

      • Term Insurance Is a Must-have For Financial Security

        Term insurance plans are amongst the most preferred type of insurance which many people go for. The biggest reason for this is the affordability of term plans, which makes it within reach of a large number of people. Term plans usually offer policyholders with a high amount of coverage at a low cost, for a fixed number of years. Considering the time factor, term plans are the most useful for young professionals who are financially supporting someone like a spouse or children, or both. On the death of the policyholder, the nominee gets the Death Benefit amount.

        There are various reasons why term plans are a must-have. Some of the important ones are listed below.

        Competitive pricing – term plans are one of the cheapest pure risk cover plans available in the market, especially when compared to other plans like endowment plans, or ULIPs.

        Easy to comprehend – Term plans are very easy to understand, even for a layman. The plan offers coverage for a fixed amount, for a fixed period. In case of death within the policy period, the nominee gets the death benefit sum assured amount.

        Tax benefits – Policyholders are eligible for attractive tax benefits if they invest in a term plan.

        Timely and quick payouts of Death benefit sum assured in case of claim.

        Many term plans also offer a number of additional benefits.

        29 January 2018

      • Term Insurance Is a Must-have For Financial Security

        Term insurance plans are amongst the most preferred type of insurance which many people go for. The biggest reason for this is the affordability of term plans, which makes it within reach of a large number of people. Term plans usually offer policyholders with a high amount of coverage at a low cost, for a fixed number of years. Considering the time factor, term plans are the most useful for young professionals who are financially supporting someone like a spouse or children, or both. On the death of the policyholder, the nominee gets the Death Benefit amount.

        There are various reasons why term plans are a must-have. Some of the important ones are listed below.

        Competitive pricing – term plans are one of the cheapest pure risk cover plans available in the market, especially when compared to other plans like endowment plans, or ULIPs.

        Easy to comprehend – Term plans are very easy to understand, even for a layman. The plan offers coverage for a fixed amount, for a fixed period. In case of death within the policy period, the nominee gets the death benefit sum assured amount.

        Tax benefits – Policyholders are eligible for attractive tax benefits if they invest in a term plan.

        Timely and quick payouts of Death benefit sum assured in case of claim.

        Many term plans also offer a number of additional benefits.

        29 January 2018

      • Budget 2018: Proposition made to separate tax exemption limits for Life Insurance Products

        The last announcement made, related to the life insurance sector, in a Union Budget was in FY14-15, when the FDI limit was raised to 49%. It is expected that certain changes will be made in regards to the life insurance sector in the upcoming Union Budget 2018.

        At present, various financial instruments such as insurance premiums, EPF contributions, etc. are covered under one tax slab of Rs.1.5 lakh. Thus, people are hopeful that separate tax exemption limits will be made for life insurance and pension products alone, in the upcoming Budget.

        Also, GST (the Goods and Services Tax) has resulted in insurance premiums increasing for various insurance products, thus making it a less attractive investment option for policy buyers. Policyholders and insurance firms are hopeful that they will see the GST being waived of insurance premiums, in the upcoming fiscal year.

        17 January 2018

      • Speculation About Budget 2018 – Will insurance plans get enhanced tax relief?

        The Union Budget 2018 is all set to be released on Feb 1. In the past financial year, some government reforms like implementation of GST, and demonetisation have caused widespread inconvenience to the citizens of the country. In that light, people are looking forward to the announcement of tax reforms and arrangements from the upcoming budget, which would hopefully make life easier and also provide relief to taxpayers. Some measures which the people are hoping to see are:

        · Enhancement in tax slabs for tax payers – Currently, tax exemption is available to those within the annual income bracket of Rs.2.5lakh, which people are hoping would be increased to Rs.3 lakh. This would greatly benefit small taxpayers as it would increase their disposable income.

        · Increase in tax deduction limits under Section 80C – At present, tax deduction of up to Rs.1.5 lakh is allowed under Section 80C of the income Tax Act, 1961. In the coming budget, taxpayers are hopeful to see that limit raised to Rs.2 lakh which would help in giving a boost to savings and investing.

        · Independent tax-deduction for term insurance – the insurance industry has urged the government to create a separate tax deduction clause for term insurance investments in order to not only encourage people to insure themselves, but also get further tax benefits.

        · Enhance tax-deduction limit for health insurance under Sec 80D – Like term insurance, tax payers are also hoping to see enhanced tax benefits for investing in health insurance which is governed by Section 80D of the Income Tax Act, 1961.

        · Reduction in GST on insurance premium – the implementation of GST has hiked insurance premiums considerably, thereby discouraging many people to forego buying insurance altogether. With an 18% GST on life and health insurance premiums, insurance as a whole has become inaccessible to many people who can no longer afford it.

        · Make pension plans tax friendly – Currently, income received under pension plans is taxable. Tax payers are hoping for some tax relief on that front where pension insurance income may be treated at par with NPS, which is a retirement scheme introduced by the government.

        25 January 2018

      • Budget 2018: Proposition made to separate tax exemption limits for Life Insurance Products

        The last announcement made, related to the life insurance sector, in a Union Budget was in FY14-15, when the FDI limit was raised to 49%. It is expected that certain changes will be made in regards to the life insurance sector in the upcoming Union Budget 2018.

        At present, various financial instruments such as insurance premiums, EPF contributions, etc. are covered under one tax slab of Rs.1.5 lakh. Thus, people are hopeful that separate tax exemption limits will be made for life insurance and pension products alone, in the upcoming Budget.

        Also, GST (the Goods and Services Tax) has resulted in insurance premiums increasing for various insurance products, thus making it a less attractive investment option for policy buyers. Policyholders and insurance firms are hopeful that they will see the GST being waived of insurance premiums, in the upcoming fiscal year.

        17 January 2018

      • Insurance Terms Which You Must Know

        When it comes to life insurance, a majority of people purchasing the policy do not have much idea about their purchase, barring a few basic things like the sum assured, premium, tenure, etc. of the plan. If someone’s taken a policy themselves without going through a broker, they are far more likely to have a better idea of what they are purchasing, as compared to someone who may have left their policy purchase to the services of a broker or insurance agent. Even when we purchase the policy, how many of us actually go through the policy document and its details? Hardy anyone, would be the honest answer.

        Life insurance is something that is designed to protect our loved ones from any financial calamity which might fall their way if the breadwinner of the family happens to suddenly pass away. When it comes to purchasing life insurance, it is very important for not just the policyholder, but also the nominee to be fully aware of all the vital terms which are used in life insurance, to ensure that they fully understand what they are getting. Some of the important terms which one must be familiar with are policyholder, assignment, beneficiary, claim, nominee, coverage, premium, exclusions, maturity or death benefit, rider, sum assured, etc.

        22 January 2018

      • Term Insurance as an effective tool of life insurance

        When it is pure risk protection that you are looking for, a term insurance plan is the best option that you can go for. Term insurance have been widely popular for a number of reasons. First, they are the purest form of life insurance that one can get, second, they are very affordable, and third, they provide a high sum of cover. Term plans are simple in their functioning as well and easy to understand. A term plan is usually taken for a term period of 5-30 years for a specific amount of sum assured. This sum assured would be provided to the insured’s nominee in case the former happens to pass away before the policy term is over. The sum assured is known as the death benefit. There is no maturity or survival benefit provided under a term plan. Some of the noteworthy benefits which term plans offer are:

        Cost-effective Protection – Term plans are among the most affordable types of insurance available in the market. The fact that these plans do not provide a maturity benefit is the primary reason why they are expensive as there is no payout made on the policyholder’s survival through the policy term. Furthermore, if you buy the plan online, you are likely to get it for even cheaper.

        No Additional Costs Attached – When it comes to insurance, plans often have a number of additional costs attached. For instance, ULIPs or unit-linked insurance plans have an investment element attached to them wherein fund management costs, fund allocation costs and a number of other costs come into play. With term plan, there is nothing such, thereby helping bring down the cost of premiums drastically.

        Ideal for sole income earners – Term plans are a must-have for individuals who are the only ones earning an income in their household, and have family members dependent on them financially. In case something were to happen to a sole income earner within a family, the family members are likely to fall into financial distress soon after the demise of the income earner. To prevent this from happening, it is important to have a term plan to cover your family’s needs.

        17 January 2018

      • Some basic information about insurance claim settlements

        In the life insurance segment, death claims are divided into 4 categories - claims settled, claims rejected, claims written back and pending. While 3 types are self-explanatory, the fourth type which is of particular interest is ‘claims written back’. These are basically claims which have not been claimed by the insured due to a variety of reasons such as incomplete documents or litigation. Now, when it comes to rejection of claims, that happens for a number of reasons. However, based on reports, a maximum number of claims which have been filed before the policy has completed 3 years, have been rejected due to fraudulent reasons. Ms. R.M Vishakha, CEO at IndiaFirst Life Insurance said that insurers usually tread a fine line when it comes to providing a simple-on-boarding process versus making sure that only genuine claims are settled. In case a claim has been made before the policy hasn’t even completed 3 years, the insurer will be more thorough in verifying the claim. If the insurer detects any instance of fraud in the claim, the same is rejected outright. For most claim settlement cases which go to court, the verdict is mostly settled in favour of the insurance company.

        Claim settlement record

        When it comes to life insurance, it is important for a policyholder to be aware of their insurer’s claim settlement record. Ideally policyholders must track their insurer’s claim settlement record over a duration to look assess whether there is an improvement or fall. If there is little or no improvement in the insurer’s claim settlement record, it may be wise to look for another insurer.

        Policyholders must ensure that they exercise utmost caution at the time of filling their policy proposal form. This is to ensure that all your details are correct and if you were to raise an early claim, the chances of it being rejected would be minimal.

        16 January 2018

      • Ergo and Manulife look to acquire Legal & General’s stake in IndiaFirst Life Insurance

        Internationally-based insurers Manulife Financial Corp and Ergo International AG are currently holding discussions to acquire the 26% stake in India-based insurance firm, IndiaFirst Life Insurance. The 26% stake in the company is currently held by UK-based Legal & General Group Plc. IndiaFirst has hired Ambit Corporate Finance to help them find a buyer. The life insurance firm is a joint venture between India-based Bank of Baroda and Andhra Bank, which hold a 44% and 30% stake in the insurance company, respectively. The remaining stake is owned by Legal & General.

        15 January 2018

      • Axis Bank looks for opportunities in the Life Insurance Sector

        Axis Bank is looking to enter the life insurance space by acquiring a stake in IDBI Federal Life Insurance. The same move was sanctioned by the executive committee of Axis Bank in December, last year. It is also reported that the bank is making use of the services of an investment bank based in the US to find a mid-size insurance firm, which can be acquired. Axis Bank is also considering acquiring insurance firm Tata AIA.

        Currently, the bank is partnered with both Max Life Insurance and LIC, within the life insurance sector. In the general insurance sector, the bank has formed a partnership with Tata AIA. Axis Bank had recently raised a sum amounting to Rs.11,625 crore by issuing warrants and shares.

        11 January 2018

      • Premium Payment Options Under Term Insurance

        Affordable premiums and high cover are the two primary reasons which have driven the popularity of term insurance plans. The idea of a term insurance plan is very simple and easy to understand. The plan provides a fixed amount of cover to the policyholder for a fixed duration ranging from 5 years to 30 years. If the policyholder happens to die before the end of the policy term, the sum assured benefit amount is provided to the nominee. Premium payment is an important aspect of the policy purchase process and here are the different options one has when it comes to premium payment on term plans.

        Regular Payment Option

        Under the regular premium payment option, which is also one of the most commonly availed option, the premium is paid on a regular basis. The frequency for payment can either be monthly, quarterly, half-yearly, or annually. This mode of premium payment is most convenient as it is affordable by most policyholders who can decide he frequency as per their convenience.

        Limited Payment Option

        Under a limited premium payment plan, the premium payment term is shorter than the policy term. This means that the policyholder has to pay premiums for a limited term but can continue enjoying the benefits of the policy for the entire policy term. This option is most ideal for people who may have occasional spikes in their income and can pay the higher premium.

        Single Payment Option

        Under this option, the entire plan premium is paid in a single shot, usually at the inception of the policy and may work out to be cheaper in comparison to the regular premium payment option.

        11 January 2018

      • Reliance Nippon Life to declare first interim dividend, post listing

        Reliance Nippon Life Asset Management will be considering their first dividend, post listing, next week at their board meeting. The company’s Board of Directors are expected to meet on January 16 to discuss declaring the interim dividend, three months after the listing. The board will also be approving financial results that were unaudited for the last nine months, up to 31 December 2017. Reliance Nippon Life, which is a leading asset management company in India, was the first mutual funds to list on the Indian bourses.

        10 January 2018

      • Manipal Global Education Services to conduct Training Program for Future Generali Employees

        Manipal Global Education Services will be conducting a customised training program on life insurance for future employees of Future Generali India Life Insurance. The one-year program will be held at the in Bangalore at the Manipal Global Academy of BFSI Campus. The program will comprise on-campus training for a period of 4 months, internship for 2 months, and on-the-job training at the insurer’s office for a period of 6 months.

        Upon completion of the program, students will receive a Post-Graduate Diploma in Life Insurance and will also be offered a permanent position with Future Generali. The training program is expected to commence in February this year.

        8 January 2018

      • Government-run term insurance and accident cover plan see high enrolment

        The government–run personal accident insurance scheme called Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana (PMSBY) has recorded total enrolment of 132.57 million by 8 Jan 2018. The Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana (PMJJBY) which is a government-run term insurance plan provided coverage to 52 million individuals for a sum of Rs.2 lakh/person.

        Both these insurance schemes were launched in May 2015 under the Jan Suraksha Yojana initiated by PM Modi. Both these schemes come with a validity of one year and can be renewed automatically by way of automatic debit of premium from the policyholder’s bank account. Premium chargeable for the Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana (PMSBY) personal accident insurance scheme is Rs.12 per annum, whereas the premium for the Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana (PMJJBY) term insurance scheme is Rs.330 per annum.

        The Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana (PMSBY) personal accident insurance scheme is a yearly renewable scheme which offers cover against accidental death and disability for an amount of up to Rs.2 lakh. This scheme is open to all individuals who hold bank accounts and are between the age group of 18 to 70 years. The coverage period under these schemes commences from 1 June and ends on May 31 of the following year.

        The Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana (PMJJBY) is a yearly renewable term insurance scheme which offers life insurance cover worth Rs.2 lakh to all individuals who hold a bank account and are aged between 18 years to 50 years. This scheme provides cover in the event of death caused due to any reason, which also includes murder or suicide. However, despite the low premiums, multiple fraudulent claims have been raised under these policies across India in cases where policyholders have staged accidents or are issue of policies under the name of already deceased people.

        11 January 2018

      • Bajaj Allianz seeks tax-free status for term insurance products in Union Budget 2018

        Life insurance firm Bajaj Allianz is currently seeking a tax-free status for their term insurance plans in the Union Budget 2018. The MD and CEO of Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance, Mr. Tarun Chugh, also said that they have asked for tax incentives for certain pension plans, much like the tax benefits that are available under the NPS or National Pension Scheme.

        In terms of the growth in business, the insurance firm has witnessed a 58% growth in rated new business and a 65% growth in the individual rated premiums. In terms of the product portfolio offered by the insurer, 65% of the products offered by the insurer are unit-linked plans, whereas the remaining 35% is comprised of traditional insurance products.

        Bajaj Allianz recently tied-up with a co-operative bank based in Mumbai and is also looking at entering bancassurance partnerships with a few other banks. The company is currently rated number four in terms of the assets under management (AUM) and has a net worth of Rs.9,000 crore.

        9 January 2018

      • Union Budget 2018: Centre may take initiatives to increase growth in life insurance sector

        It is reported that a committee that was created by the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) recently submitted a report which suggested certain changes which the government can make in the life insurance segment. Thus, as a result, the upcoming Union Budget for the year 2018 could see the tax deductions for life insurance policies under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act, 1961 being raised from the current Rs.1,50,000 lakh to Rs.2 lakh.

        The committee also suggested that a significant change should be made to the current investment norms in order to increase the returns generated by various investment funds. Thus, the committee has recommended that the proportion of ‘G-Secs’ in pension/annuity funds and life funds should be lowered.

        4 January 2018

      • Limited Term Premium Plans – Who Are they Beneficial For

        Limited period premium payment plans are life insurance plans wherein the policyholder gets the option of making premium payment on their policy for a limited number of years, usually 5 to 10 years. However, the coverage is provided for the entire policy term. The term of premium payment will vary depending on the duration and type of the policy you have taken. In case of a term insurance plan, the premium payment period will be lower than the term of the plan. Here are the various plans which offer the limited premium payment option.

        Endowment Plans

        The limited premium payment option is available under Endowment plans. Here, the policyholder can choose a premium payment term between 5 to 25 years for policies with a longer duration. The option of limited premium payment under Endowment plans is usually available ‘with-bonuses' and ‘fully guaranteed’.

        ULIPs

        Unit Linked Insurance Plans or ULIPs are another type of insurance that is available with the limited premium payment option. ULIPs with limited premium payment options are similar to single premium insurance plans wherein the policyholder can pay the premium for a term of 15 years in a term of 5 years.

        Term Plans

        Term plans are also known as pure risk protection plans wherein the coverage term can go up to 40 years, or till the policyholder reaches 80 years of age. However, there is an option to make premium payments for a much shorter term. Limited premium payment term plans are ideal for those who have varied income. Similarly, these plans are also suitable for those who may not be sure about their premium payment capacity for the entire policy term. in short, these plans are most ideal for individuals who are self-employed and do not draw a fixed salary each month.

        Advantages & Disadvantages of limited premium payment plan

        Advantages

        • No need to commit to paying premiums for a long term.

        • No risk of losing benefits provided under the policy like the maturity benefit.

        • You get insurance coverage for the entire policy term despite paying premiums for a limited period.

        • If the policyholder surrenders the plan, the surrender value is given to the policyholder

        Disadvantages

        When you opt for a limited premium payment plan, you must understand that your monthly premium outflow in this case will be much higher as compared to when you pay premiums as per the regular policy term. Before choosing this option, assess your payment capacity to ensure that you can make the premium payment.

        9 January 2018

      • Future Generali Partners With Manipal Global To Launch Customized Talent Development Program

        Future Generali India Life Insurance recently announced their partnership with Manipal Global Education Services (MaGE) which will be responsible for developing a customised Life Insurance Training Program for the insurer’s future employees. The year-long post-graduate diploma programme will be conducted at the Manipal Global Academy of BFSI Campus, Bangalore and will include on-campus training, internship and on-the-job-training at Future Generali Life Insurance branches.

        After the students have successfully completed the training course, they will be awarded with a post-graduate diploma in Life insurance, along with an employment offer to work at Future Generali Life Insurance. the candidates for the training programme will be selected on the basis of a pre-defined process set up by the insurer itself. The programme commences from February 2018 onwards.

        5 January 2018

      • HDFC Standard Life Insurance is best bough on correction

        Speaking about HDFC Standard Life, Mr. Vijay Chopra of Enochventures.com was of the view that people who enter such companies must do so with a long-term goal in mind. Life insurance companies hold immense potential as the investments that flow in to these companies are usually locked-in for a longer duration, considering which, these companies will pay off. He is of the view that HDFC Standard Life has undergone a slight correction following their listing. Mr. Chopra was appreciative of the management present at HDFC Standard which has sound corporate governance. It is primarily due to this reason that he views HDFC Standard Life as a good company to invest in.

        3rd January 2018

      • How Life Insurance Is Expected To Grow In 2018

        The insurance industry in India is all set to achieve increased growth in 2018. This growth is likely to be driven by the rise in the portion of financial assets in household savings, as well as by low penetration. With time, the savings patterns of households in India is evolving despite the prevalent low-interest rate situation. This has led to the rise of life insurance which is now seen not only as a risk mitigation tool but also as an attractive form of investment. This year, the support for the insurance industry is likely to come from bancassurance, agency expansion, government policies, and digitalisation.

        Look Back at 2017

        In the past year, the private sector individual annual premium equivalent (APE) gained strength, thanks to demonetisation and led to increased financial savings. First year life insurance premium has grown by 16% on a year-on-year basis, to 1.81 lakh crore. The figure of number of policies served was over 1.5 crore in 2017, as compared to 1.37 crore in the year before that.

        What To Expect in 2018

        In the present year, the life insurance industry will look to establish a closer alliance with customers, as well as bring about a change in the existing scenario of how insurers service policies and engage with customers. Technology will be at the helm driving this change as insurers up the degree of customisation of need-based products. In terms of products, ULIPs and guarantees are likely to drive the premium growth for the life insurance industry.

        2nd January 2018

      • Finance Ministry looks to merge all government insurance policies with PMJJBY and PMSBY

        The Finance Ministry may soon be merging all government-sponsored insurance schemes with the Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana (PMJJBY) and the Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana (PMSBY). These two schemes are currently subscribed by over 18 crore people within the country and merging other insurance covers with these schemes can help increase the economies of scale for the two schemes.

        It is reported that currently at least eight schemes have already been merged, and the ministry is looking to merge more such schemes. The merging of these government-sponsored schemes along with linking Aadhaar to insurance is a way for the government to identify individuals with no insurance coverage.

        26 December 2017

      • UK-based Legal & General looking may sell stake in IndiaFirst Life Insurance

        It is reported that UK-based Legal & General is looking to sell its stake in IndiaFirst Life Insurance. IndiaFirst Life, which was launched in the year 2010, is a joint venture between Bank of Baroda (BoB), Andhra Bank, and financial services firm Legal & General. Bob holds a 44% stake in the life insurance firm, while Andhra Bank and Legal & General hold a 30% and 26% stake, respectively.

        The India-based joint venture partners are reportedly looking to bring in a foreign investor to replace Legal & General. The promoters have appointed Ambit Capital to help them find a suitable investor. IndiaFirst Life Insurance has recorded a profit of Rs.35 crore for FY16-17. The company is targeting a net profit of Rs.50 crore this fiscal year.

        21 December 2017

      • Term Insurance should be made mandatory under Union Budget 2018, says life insurers

        In 2014, insurance companies requested the government to make term insurance compulsory for working professionals. However, the plan was not implemented in the budget that year. Generally, money-back or endowment policies are preferred because the claim amount received is generally high. But the fact that the high protection element is absent in such policies goes unnoticed. Term insurance policies, on the other hand, have higher protection.

        According to a report prepared by a global reinsurer named Swiss Re, life insurance amounts to only 2.7% of India’s GDP. The total insurance penetration, including all types of insurance products, amounts to 3.44% of the GDP as against the world average which is 6.23% of the GDP.

        29th December 2017

      • Quick guide for purchasing life insurance

        Many people don’t give a thought to purchasing life insurance. However, many others who do, mainly focus on aspects like the premium payable, payment terms or mode, sum assured amount, etc. Lesser importance is paid to the more important aspects such as the quantum of overage that will be provided, or which their dependents will need. Often, people buy insurance as an investment or a tool to save tax, and not as life cover, which it mainly provides. So, before you buy an insurance policy, here are some things you must keep in mind.

        Search for a policy online

        Thanks to technological advancements, it has become easier than ever to not only look for but also purchase insurance policies online. The online world has made it much easier for one to not only get information about the various types of insurance but also help you select the policy that is right for you, without enlisting the help of an expert. In addition to a large number of public and private insurance providers that are now selling their policies online, many third party websites have also come up which help you not only compare between but also choose the best policy as per your needs.

        Do you need life insurance? If yes, then how much?

        Life insurance is a must for those who are financially supporting dependents like a spouse or family members. However, for those who are not, life insurance may not really be necessary. If you do require life insurance, the next question to ask yourself, is how much coverage would be sufficient to take care of your family’s needs. While the rule of thumb mentions that life insurance coverage must ideally be approximately 10-15 times of your yearly income. However, there are many other factors which must be considered when deciding life insurance coverage such as income from other sources, number of dependents you are supporting, your debts, your family’s lifestyle expenses, etc.

        27th December 2017

      • Life Insurance Trends for 2018

        Life insurance has been gaining steady recognition over the past few years as people are realizing its importance. For the coming year some promising trends seem to have emerged for the life insurance industry. Read on to find out what some of the most important of these trends are.

        Internet is new marketplace

        Before the internet became the one-stop shop for everything, insurance was purchased on a face to face basis. Insurance salesmen would visit people at their house and the whole transaction in general required the physical presence of the insurance agent and the buyer, which was not only time-consuming but also cumbersome. However, times have changed drastically. Today, the internet has made it possible for you to not only search for but also buy life insurance policies from the comfort of your home. Not only that, the internet has also helped increase awareness among the younger generation about the importance of having life insurance.

        Increased Use of Cloud Computing

        One of the biggest reasons why people put off purchasing an insurance policy is because of the tedious and time consuming underwriting process involved wherein the buyer is required to provide the requisite details to the insurer. Due to this reason, a large number of people do not have insurance cover. Typically insurers require the applicants to provide details regarding their medical history, health status, occupation, family medical history, smoking habits, hobbies, occupation, etc. which is needed to determine the premium and also the coverage that the applicant would be eligible for.

        The answer to this tedious hassle has come by way of cloud computing wherein the applicant can simply use cloud computing to make their details accessible to the insurer. While people still may not trust the safety offered by cloud computing sites and software, there is no doubt that this technology helps save on time in an efficient way. Many insurers are also adopting could technology in place of the outdated legacy technologies.

        26th December 2017

      • Pros of Taking a Loan Against your Life Insruance Policy

        There are many insurance providers in India which offer life insurance schemes with a loan facility. This means that the policyholder can, during a financial emergency, avail a loan against their life insurance policy. there are many advantages which one can enjoy by taking a loan against their life plan, as opposed to taking out a personal loan or maxing out their credit card. For a better picture, let us look at the pros and cons of taking a loan against your life insurance policy.

        Pros

        · If you have sufficient cash value under your life insurance policy, you can easily take a loan against your policy.

        · For loans taken against policy, the application process is far more relaxed as compared to the application process for a policy loan. All you have to do is fill out a form and submit it with your insurer. You will get your payment shortly without any delay.

        · Policy loans will not reflect on your credit report since they are availed under life plans which have sufficient cash-value.

        · Interest rates on policy loans are usually relatively lower than the interest charged under other kinds of loans.

        · Policy loans do not have a strict repayment schedule. If the loan taker fails to repay the loan amount, it will be recovered from their policy death benefit.

        · Loans against policy are a great option for those who want to borrow only a small amount.

      • ICICI Showcases Promising Growth

        Speaking to a major television publication, Ms. Shahina Mukadam, an independent market expert recently gave her views on ICICI Prudential Life Insurance Company. She was of the view that the leading insurer is among the largest players in the insurance industry and has showcased very promising growth in the past year. The insurer registered a growth of approximately 16% in terms of premiums in the first half of the financial year, and is expected to register a further growth of nearly 18% to 20% in the coming few quarters, according to the current management guidance. In terms of investment, she held the opinion that investors can expect to make a minimum of 10% to 15% in the medium term, indicating that it is beneficial to continue to hold on to the shares.

        22nd December 2017

      • 22nd December 2017

      • 10 Facts You Must Know About Insurance

        Insurance is something that is necessary for all of us. However, not everyone is aware how it works or what it really involves. If you would like to know more, here are 10 points about insurance which everyone must remember.

        When it comes to life insurance, it is best purchased when you’re still young. This is because the premiums will go on increasing as you get older, while you can get a policy at a low rate when you’re still young.

        You can avail tax benefits on premiums that you pay for life insurance policies under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act, 1961.

        A savings-linked life insurance plan is fitting for those individuals who are already covered sufficiently under a separate life insurance plan.

        Do remember that your car insurance policy will not provide cover against damage or loss caused due to vandalism, earthquake, hailstorm, fire, or an animal accident.

        The premium that you are charged towards your insurance policy will be heavily dependent on your credit score or credit rating. A low score will fetch you higher premiums, whereas a high score may help lower your premium quotes.

        If you have a personal car insurance policy, then you vehicle will not be covered for any damages it sustains while being used for any purpose other than personal use. For instance, if your vehicle has been damaged or involved in an accident while being driven to transport goods commercially, the policy will not be liable to cover damages.

        If you have purchased a health insurance policy, keep in mind that there is a waiting period for some specific conditions such as cataract, knee replacement, kidney replacement, etc.

        Health insurance policies will not provide cover for certain health conditions, and you must be aware of this in order to avoid confusion and frustration during a medical emergency or at the time of making a claim.

        Health insurance is often also provided by employers so you can also consider that.

        The primary purpose of life insurance is for risk protection, and not investment.

        21st December 2017

      • Deadline Extended For Linking Aadhaar, PAN With LIC Insurance & HDFC Life Insurance Policies

        In a recent announcement, IRDAI (Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India) has extended the deadline for linking of Aadhaar and PAN (permanent account number) with insurance policies. As per the announcement made by the regulator, the submission date of PAN, Aadhaar or Form 60 has now been extended till March 31, 2018. Prior to this announcement, the deadline being observed extended till Dec 31, 2017.

        However, even though the deadline has been extended, insurance policyholders have been advised to link their PAN and Aadhaar with their respective insurance policy to continue receiving benefits. During early November, IRDAI had put forth a circular which required all policyholders to compulsorily link their Aadhaar and PAN card details with their insurance policy. Failure to link the policy with Aadhaar or PAN cards could lead to issues at the time of claim settlement.

        21 December 2017

      • Tips on How To Choose The Best Insurance Policy

        Insurance is a very important commodity in today’s times. However, with the plethora of options available out there, finding the right plan can often be quite a task. Further adding to this challenge is the fact that many customers often go for a plan that is heavily marketed, without giving much thought to their own needs. This often results in them buying the wrong plan. An ideal insurance portfolio must include different types of investments and insurance as well. To purchase insurance one must take into account various important factors such as their age, their income, the number of dependents they are supporting, their lifestyle, etc. Here are some quick tips on how you can go about choosing the right insurance plan.

        Assess your needs – this is the first step in the process of buying insurance. you must first evaluate your needs and requirements which will help you decide on the type of policy that is fit for you, and also the amount of cover you need so that your loved ones are financially secured in the event of a misfortune. Calculate the requirements of your family members and also find out the amount of money you can put aside to invest in an insurance policy.

        What perks is the policy offering – When you are out to choose an insurance plan, do consider the perks and benefits that each plan offers as well, so you can make an informed decision.

        Compare multiple quotes – this is an important part of the insurance purchase process. You must not settle with the first offer that you get, but look around and get premium quotes from multiple insurers before you make a decision. The rates for the same type of plan may differ from insurer to insurer, as can the benefits. To ensure that you are getting the best plan in terms of benefits offered and price, it is important to get multiple quotes and compare them based on factors like benefits, perks, premiums, etc.

        Ask questions – When it comes to buying insurance, do not shy away from asking questions, After all, you are going to be paying towards your policy for a considerable number of years, you have every right to know about all aspects of the policy. Before you commit to make premium payments, make sure you clarify all your doubts regarding the policy, no matter how insignificant or minor they may seem.

        20 December 2017

      • Vodafone Enters Partnership With Aviva Life Insurance for Red Protect

        One of India’s leading telecom operator, Vodafone recently announced its tie-up with Aviva Life Insurance, one of the leader’s in the Indian insurance sector, to launch a mobile plan which comes integrated with life insurance cover that is worth up to the monthly rental amount for 20 years. This plan is called Red Protect and has been designed for Vodafone post-paid customers who will now be able to get life insurance cover along with their cellular plan. The Red Protect plan starts at a tariff of Rs.499/month and will allow many young professionals to provide valuable insurance cover to their families. To activate Red Protect, customers will be required to call 199, and make the choice of the monthly rental + sum assured combination which suits them best.

        On the occasion of the launch of Red Protect, Nick Gliddon, Director, Vodafone Business Services said that this plan has been launched after receiving extensive feedback from customers and employers who are seeking plans which provide value over and above cellular mobility. Life insurance has been a unanimous choice of the majority of responders, said Mr. Gliddon.

        Speaking about the partnership with Vodafone, Mr. Trevor Bull, Managing director & CEO, Aviva Life Insurance, said that Aviva’s partnership with Vodafone is in line with the insurer’s philosophy of offering financial security to customers via simple solutions. Following the partnership with Vodafone Business Services, Aviva aims to reach out to more customers offering a fully paperless process which also includes instant policy issuance.

        19th December 2017

      • What makes insurance a must-have

        If you have bought yourself an expensive laptop, would you simply carry it in your hand everywhere or would you get a proper bag which it can be carried in to prevent it from collecting dust? The answer is quite obvious. The same way, life insurance helps protect your loved ones from any financial risk that might occur due to your sudden demise. The idea behind life insurance is to purchase a policy which offers a specified amount of sum assured that is provided to your beneficiary in the event of your sudden death. Life insurance is an indispensable tool for a majority of people in India who financially support their family and have far more responsibilities to shoulder.

        Life insurance is something that will benefit you greatly when you purchase it at a young age. Though insurance is different from investment, it can also be taken to complement your investments, if done wisely. It acts as a financial back-up for your family’s needs at a time when you may no longer be around to provide for them.

        Life insurance plans are available in several types, each type serving a specific purpose. Term insurance is meant for pure risk protection and does not offer survival benefits, whole life insurance offers over for an unlimited period of time and allows you to leave behind a legacy as well, endowment policies provide a death benefit and a maturity benefit, children’s insurance plans are designed to ensure financial security to your little one later in life, annuity plans help you create a corpus for enjoying your retirement without worries.

        19th December 2017

      • Metrics To Evaluate A Insurance Provider

        While most people only interact with an insurer as customers, they are usually required to extend their knowledge to a particular area i.e. products. As customers, they will only need to know about the different products that the insurer sells, embedded costs, insurer’s performance record, claim settlement process, etc. However, with the recent IPO launch by ICICI and SBI Life, customers will now also be interacting with insurers in the capacity of shareholders. Therefore, it is crucial they know the key financial parameters which are needed to be understood for analysing the value of a life insurance company.

        Embedded value

        Insurance is a long-term agreement between the insurer and the insured wherein the latter pays premiums towards the policy to receive coverage for the chosen period. The insurer makes profits from the future income that they receive by way of premiums. Therefore, the amount of future profits that an insurer is able to generate with current business is the measure of the company’s value. This measurement is done by embedded value (EV) which basically represents the total of the present value of combined future profits obtained from the net worth of existing business and shareholders. Therefore, the higher the volume of business that an insurer generates, the higher their embedded value will be.

        Value of new business (VNB)

        Value of new business or VNB indicates an insurer’s value based on the new business it has acquired in the previous year. It is essentially defined as embedded value of new business that is measured at the point of sale.

        Value of new business margin (VNB Margin)

        VNB margin is another metric used to evaluate an insurer. This is calculated by dividing the value of new business (VNB) by annualised premium for 1 year and gives the profit margins of a company. Companies which have high VNB margins are considered to be more profitable. VNB margins also indicate an insurer’s product mix.

        19 December 2017

      • DHFL Pramerica Life Insurance teams up With OpenText for digital transformation

        One of India’s leading insurance provider, DHFL Pramerica Life Insurance recently announced the completion of a wide scale digital transformation project in partnership with OpenText. This project has helped the insurer digitize their key business processes, right from creation of insurance policy documents to management of channel partners and insurance agents.

        DHFL has entered into a multi-year contract with OpenText under which the latter will provide DHFL Pramerica with implementation support and managed services so the insurer can sustain their digital transformation and also continue to receive support for long-term user adoption and satisfaction.

        OpenText has been deployed by DHFL Pramerica Life Insurance for not only generation but also management of documents which the customers receive such as insurance quotes and policies. As a part of the insurance process, customers also have to provide multiple forms and documents and OpenText Content Suite will help DHFL Pramerica to manage this sensitive information in a secure manner.

        In addition to helping manage customer interaction, OpenText Process Suite will also enable the insurer in terms of policy processing across multiple teams. OpenText Process Suite will also be used to automate interactions with insurance agents in order to ensure that this crucial channel can deliver quotes and information in compliance with business rules and regulatory requirements in a swift manner. This will further help ensure that key business processes, content, and information is passed on not only to customers, but also, partners, employees and agents in a secure manner across multiple platforms like mobile devices and desktops.

        14th December 2017

      • Kotak Launches SmartLife Plan with Yearly Cash Pay-outs & Protection Up To Age 75

        In an effort to expand their customer base, Kotak Mahindra Life Insurance Company Ltd., one of India’s leading private life insurance provider recently unveiled a new life insurance plan called SmartLife Plan. This is a non-linked, limited pay, participating life insurance plan which provides cover for a long term of 75 years and will offer customers the flexibility to choose a bonus option that best fits their life goals. The plan also offers customers the option to get a cash bonus which will be paid out in the form of yearly cash pay-outs after the end of the first policy year. Policyholders also have the option to collect the yearly cash bonuses into a corpus which can be accessed regularly as and when needed.

        The key advantages which this plan offers include protection up to the age of 75 years, the flexibility to choose between 2 Bonus options - Cash payout or Paid-Up Addition, enhance the plan’s protection with additional riders at additional premium, and start benefiting from the bonus option from the end of the first policy year onwards. This plan also offers the standard tax benefits under Section 80C and Section 10(10D) of Income Tax Act, 1961. Policyholders can enhance the coverage of the base plan by attaching a rider.

        There are various add-on riders available with this plan, such as the Kotak Term Rider which offers additional death cover over and above the base plan, Kotak Accidental Death Benefit Rider which provides a lump sum benefit in the event of accidental death, Kotak Permanent Disability Benefit Rider which offers regular cash payouts if the insured is rendered disabled following an accident, Kotak Life Guardian Benefit which offer premium waiver on future premiums and continued coverage if the policyholder dies, Kotak Accidental Disability Guardian Benefit which offers waiver of premiums and continued coverage if policyholder is rendered disabled due to an accident, and Kotak Critical Illness Plus Benefit Rider which offers a sum assured if the policyholder is diagnosed with any of the 37 covered critical illness.

        14 December 2017

      • Why term insurance is the most effective risk protection tool

        The loss of a loved one is irreplaceable. However, financial support during such a tough time can make a world of a difference to an aggrieved family. In the event of the death of an income earner, the family is at the risk of compromising on their lifestyle, or may even have to cut down on bare necessities.

        Term insurance plans have for long being known to be one of the most effective forms of life insurance because of the pure risk protection factor they carry. These plans can help provide a high amount of cover at a very reasonable cost. But that is not the only benefit which they offer. Here are some more:

        Term plans are a very economic life insurance option

        To cover the risk of untimely death, term plans offer the most cost-effective option in terms of coverage. These plans offer a death benefit if the policyholder happens to pass away before the policy term. There is no benefit provided if the policyholder survives the policy term. The lump sum benefit provided under this plan can help your dependents take care of their short and long term needs in the future.

        High cover at low premiums

        High cover at low premiums is one of the most important benefits of term insurance. For example, a 30-year-old, non-smoking male can get coverage worth Rs.1 crore for a duration of 40 years on the payment of a premium as low as Rs.10,000 per year. If the policy has been purchased early, the premium can be lower. The amount of coverage opted for will depend on your family’s lifestyle, your current and future assets and liabilities, and future expenses.

        Monthly income benefit

        In the event of the death of the sole income earner of a household, the family is at great risk of having to compromise their lifestyle or even on the bare necessities. Also, when a family is undergoing a stressful time following the demise of a loved one, it can be very difficult to make the right decision, especially regarding investment of the benefit lump sum pay out which is usually a substantial amount of money. However, term plans often carry a provision wherein the death benefit can be split in parts. One part of the benefit is paid in lump sum after death, while the remainder is paid in equal monthly instalments over a specified period of time. This way, the family does not have to worry about investments to take care of their future needs.

        13 December 2017

      • Vodafone to begin offering Red Protect, an enterprise mobile plan with life insurance

        Vodafone’s Enterprise Postpaid customers can now avail life insurance for their loved ones along with their cellular plan. Vodafone is now offering Red Protect under which customers can avail life insurance along with their mobile plan. The tariff for this particular plan starts as low as Rs.499/month and can help individuals provide life cover to their family at an affordable cost. This scheme has been introduced as a part of Vodafone RED and will be available to only select enterprise customers.

        13th December 2017

      • Life insurance is likely to become a dominant industry in the near future

        According to current trends, life insurance is likely to become a dominant industry in the near future. More and more households are directing their savings towards financial instruments like insurance and equities, a trend which will only pick pace in the coming years, thanks to strong economic growth. As per the on-going trend, more and more people are now leaning towards purchasing life insurance as a risk protection tool, instead of a savings or investment instrument. According to reports, the ratio of GDP to household savings seems to be declining but financial savings has risen from 44% to 58% of the GDP in 5 years, up to March.

        12th December 2017

      • Term Insurance Plan + SIP makes for an unbeatable combination

        Making money is nearly everyone’s objective in life. However, only if you have money will you be at the risk of losing it. Loss of money can happen in a number of ways like theft, robbery, investment losses, loan, etc. However, if you have money that cannot be used during an emergency, is as good as having no money. Talking about a term insurance plan, and a Systematic Investment Plan (SIP), both are meant for different end uses.

        As we know, the future is unpredictable. Considering that, a term plan, and a SIP can collectively provide you with a robust financial cushion in the event of a misfortune. While a SIP can help take care of long term needs, a term plan will provide you with peace of mind for all times.

        SIP are available in various types, each meant for fulfilling long and short term goals. However, if you have taken a single term insurance plan with an adequate amount of cover, it should also be sufficient. Term plans are pure risk protection plans which offer cover for a specific number of years. They are usually one of the most affordable types of life insurance. Also, these plans, like any other life insurance plan, will help you saveon taxes as well. These days, one can easily purchase term insurance plans online.

        12 December 2017

      • How To Avoid Getting Your Life Insurance Claim Getting Rejected

        Claim settlement is a very delicate aspect of life insurance which can go both ways. While a majority of times, life insurance providers settle claims without a hassle, other times, claims may be rejected outright for a variety of reasons. However, in a majority of cases where a life insurance claim has been rejected, it is mostly due to incorrect information being provided at the time of application or proposal, which is the wrong thing to do. Always remember to fill in the correct details regarding the following on a life insurance application form.

        Occupation and income – Life insurance providers decide the highest cover you are eligible for depending on your income. Therefore it is necessary that you provide the correct figures pertaining to the same so they can decide exactly how much cover you can get.

        Details of health – The other important factor which can lead to rejection of a proposal or claim is providing incorrect health/medical details. If you do not inform your insurer about your health condition in full honesty and hold back important details such as a pre-existing condition, etc., your insurance proposal may be rejected or your beneficiary will stand to lose the claim.

        Family’s medical history – Along with your income, and health related details, it is equally important that you provide the insurer with accurate details pertaining to your family’s medical history. Often, a person may have a family history of a chronic illness such as a heart disease, diabetes, etc., which is more than likely to affect them as well. Do not hide the same from your insurer or it can lead to rejection of not only your proposal but also your claim.

        11th December 2017

      • The importance of choosing the right insurance policy

        When choosing a life insurance policy, the decision greatly depends on the future goals you have regarding not only your personal life, but also your professional life. You needs will be different if you have decided to raise a family, vs. if you plan to stay unmarried. Likewise, if you are a business owner, or a professional, or a salaried person, there are life insurance options which are designed to fit your future goals.

        Choosing the right life insurance policy is important for a variety of reasons. First, it can help you get tax relief on your income. Next, it can help you accumulate tax-free income which your beneficiary can utilize to take care of their short and long term expenses when you can no longer provide for them. These policies also help to replace income and provide a regular monthly income to your dependents later in life.

        Your life insurance premiums depend a great deal on your age and the condition of your health at the time of purchasing the policy. The younger you are, the lower your premiums are likely to be, owing to better health.

        There are different types of life insurance policies that are available nowadays, such as whole life insurance plans, term insurance plans, endowment plans. Each policy is designed to offer different benefits and is suited to different requirements. Before you purchase a policy, assess your needs and those of your family so you purchase a plan that is suited to your collective needs. After all, insurance policies come at a cost which has to be paid regularly over a continued period of time and if not budgeted properly, can eat into your expenses.

        8 December 2017

      • HDFC ERGO launches solar energy shortfall insurance policy

        India’s leading non-life insurer, HDFC ERGO General Insurance Company has recently unveiled a solar energy shortfall insurance policy which will cover non-traditional and non-physical damage related risks which are faced by solar energy projects. Diving into details, the policy is designed to provide cover to utility-scale solar farms, green fields, portfolios of rooftop installations designed for residential/commercial buildings, and a few more similar projects. Under risks related to non-physical damage, the policy will cover risks like insufficient sunshine and the impact of the same on such projects.

        The policy will also provide cover against the risk of a system being installed incorrectly or not in accordance with the manner it was intended to under the design phase, as well as the impact of the aforementioned on the revenue. Furthermore, the policy will also cover calculation errors in project yields that had been created before the project commenced operations.

        Mr. Anuj Tyagi, Executive Director, HDFC ERGO General Insurance Company said that this policy has been launched keeping Indian solar energy sector’s potential in mind. This policy is just the starting step to help insure losses that may occur owing to non-physical damages.

        7 December 2017

      • How much life insurance do you need?

        Life insurance requirements for different individuals will vary for a number of reasons. Each person has a different financial situation in life, along with their own unique life situation. Due to this, the life insurance requirements of every person will also be very unique. While there is no fixed formula to help you calculate the amount of life insurance that you need, one can determine the amount they need by answering the following questions for themselves.

        Calculate your current monthly expenses – Calculate and find out how much your family ends up spending in a month on an average. This is important to ensure that the premium that you are going to pay for your policy can be adjusted with the current income and spending. After all, a high sum assured will be accompanied with high premiums as well.

        Consider the cost of inflation – Inflation is something which will only continue to rise with time. When you’re estimating your living costs for the future, don’t forget to take into account the cost of inflation.

        Take stock of your debts and liabilities – Debts will greatly affect the value of life insurance coverage that you take. Pending loan repayments, credit card bills, etc. must be taken into account when you are deciding on the sum assured of a life insurance plan. Take a cover amount which is enough to help you clear all these debts/liabilities, and also have sufficient balance remaining which your family can depend upon financially.

        Your future responsibilities – For individuals who financially support a family, be it their spouse and children, or aged parents, it is very important to consider their family’s future needs when computing the amount of life insurance they need. Some future expenses may include children’s education expenses, medical needs of aged parents, household expenses, medical needs of a special child, etc.

        8th December 2017

      • Insurance policies That Help Minimize Losses Caused By Natural Calamities

        Natural disasters can strike unannounced and cause tremendous damage, not only to life but also property. Earthquakes, hurricanes, floods, and landslides are some of the more common ones which have caused widespread destruction to mankind in the recent past. Accidental insurance is one of the small but significant ways in which people can minimize their loss that such disasters leave behind.

        It is devastating to be stripped of all your possessions. For those who are living in an area where natural calamities are a frequent occurrence, getting the following types of insurance is a necessity. No one wants to awaken the morning after a disaster to find all their worldly possessions destroyed.

        • Home insurance will ensure that you are covered not only against the financial loss that is caused to the structure of your house, but also to the valuable contents of your house like furniture, electronics, etc. if you deem it necessary, do purchase add-on cover over the base plan to enhance its coverage.
        • Term insurance is one the purest types of life insurance which protects against the risk of death. Term plans are often the most recommended type of insurance as they provide high amounts of coverage at very affordable costs. If the policyholder passes away before the policy period is over, their beneficiary is entitled to the death benefit which can help them take care of their immediate and long term needs.
        • Personal accident insurance can come in very handy at the time of a natural disaster which can leave behind extensive damage. While a person may not perish during a natural disaster, but the probability is high that they might suffer serious injury or be rendered disabled afterwards. This is where personal accident insurance can be invaluable as it provides financial assistance to the individual who has been permanently or temporarily disabled after being injured during a natural calamity. The benefit payable under a personal accident plan will vary depending on the severity of the disability.
        • Health insurance is another important policy to have at all times. After a calamity, chances are high that people have been injured during the event and are in need of immediate medical attention. A health insurance policy will help cover your emergency room trips, outpatient treatment, inpatient treatment, medicines, etc.

        7th December 2017

      • Aditya Birla Sun Life Income Shield Plan – A Term Plan With Monthly Income

        The concept of life insurance has been around for a long time and millions of people have benefited greatly from it. However, there are different kinds of life insurance plans that are offered these days such as term plans, traditional life insurance plans, endowment plans, annuity plans, etc. Today, we will be discussing about a unique term insurance plan offered by Aditya Birla which provides the policyholder with a monthly income which increases at a pre-set percentage every year.

        Aditya Birla has launched a pure term insurance plan known as the Income Shield plan which has been designed in a way that it provides the beneficiary with a monthly benefit in the event of the sudden demise of the policyholder. If the policyholder survives the policy term, the beneficiary will not be entitled to any benefit. Under this plan, the benefit pay out structure is unique in a way that it provides the death benefit by way of monthly instalments. Policyholders also have the option to increase the amount of this periodic income each year by a pre=set percentage. Furthermore, this plan also includes the benefit of waiver of premium on the occurrence of pre-listed conditions or events.

        6 December 2017

      • Buying a life insurance policy? Don’t ignore these things

        Life insurance is a must-have in every person’s portfolio. There are many reasons for which people buy life insurance such as protecting their loved ones from financial risks, for financial reasons such as saving up for your child’s future education, marriage, or even saving up for your own retirement. This is why it is all the more important to not just understand all aspects of the policy, but also things which you must avoid doing.

        Not Knowing What You Want Insurance For – Many people buy insurance for reasons such as saving tax or investment. What people forget is that the main purpose of life insurance is to provide financial security to your loved ones. However, many people are also unsure of the reason for which they want to purchase life insurance which is not the right way to go about it.

        Not knowing how much coverage you need – Before you commit to making the payment for a policy, ensure that you have assessed your financial situation. Take stock of your current assets and liabilities and then decide how much cover you really need.

        Not knowing the type of plan you want – There are multiple types of life insurance policies that are available in the market these days such as term plans, endowment plans, retirement plans, child insurance plans, ULIP plans, etc. first find out the reason for which you are getting an insurance plan and then you will be better able to decide the plan that is suited for those needs.

        Not Knowing The Premium Paying Term – The other thing you should be careful about is the premium payment term for your plan. Every plan has a different premium paying term which determines how much premium you will have to pay. With the PPT, you can also determine the returns you are likely to get.

        6th December 2017

      • Mistakes to Avoid When Purchasing Life Insurance

        The whole purpose of getting a life insurance policy is to to ensure that your dependents and family members are financially secure if you were to ever pass away suddenly. A life insurance policy will provide your nominee or beneficiary with a sum assured amount if and when you pass away. This money can be utilized to look after the household expenses, children’s upbringing costs, education, wedding, and to pay off any liabilities that are remaining. If you buy a life cover plan without doing the necessary homework, you are far more likely to end up buying a plan which is unfit for you.

        When you decide to buy life insurance, avoid making these common mistakes.

        Purchasing a life insurance plan to save on tax - When you do that, not only will you be putting the financial security of your loved ones in jeopardy by purchasing a plan that is unfit plan, but will also be wasting money towards premiums. Don’t purchase a life plan on a whim. Do proper and thorough research on the various plans available and pick one based on your particular life situation and requirements.

        Not knowing the difference between insurance and investments - Many buyers are under the illusion that insurance is an investment. This is not true. Due to this reason, they end up purchasing life insurance policies like endowment or money back plans which provide guaranteed returns after the maturity period. Avoid doing this at all costs. Insurance is a separate requirement. If you want to ensure the financial security of your loved ones, you must get a term insurance plan which provides cover against the risk of death. Term plans are very affordable and enable you to get a high amount of cover at a low cost. The money that you save on premiums can be redirected towards making investments in capital maximizing avenues like mutual funds.

        Young people don’t need insurance – When it comes to life insurance, the only person who does not need it is someone who is single and does not have any one depending on them financially, either at the moment, or even in the foreseeable future. If you are young, but have your parents or a sibling depending on you financially, you must take life insurance to secure their future financially. It is highly advisable for young people to buy insurance because they can get it at a much lower cost than someone who is older. Young age is associated with lower health risks and hence insurers are more favourable to provide cover at a lower cost.

        5th December 2017

      • Bajaj Allianz Insurance to Launch Digital Branches via Mosambee

        One of india’s leading insurance provider, Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance Company, has begun adopting digital branch services through Mosambee to extend the scope of their service offerings.

        Mosambee is a handheld device which provides the services of a mobile branch and offers customers a range of customer services like getting premium payment certificates, obtaining account statements, payment of insurance renewal premiums, checking claim status, locating branches, SMS services for updating PAN and Aadhaar details, mobile number, email ID, fund value, account statement, bonus statement and claim status, contact details for sales enquiries and service-related queries.

        The greatest benefit of this service is that customers will now be able to pay their renewal premium via multiple payment modes like cheque, DD, chip and non-chip based credit and debit cards, online payment, etc. in addition to this, they will also have the option of making payments using eWallets soon.

        Tarun Chugh, CEO, Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance Company said that the insurer is among the very first company to in the insurance industry to adopt this unique initiative. They hope that customers will appreciate the insurer’s commitment to provide service requirements which will enable them to utilize their time better and not have to physically visit a branch office.

        5 December 2017

      • Basics of Income Replacement Insurance Plans

        What is an Income Replacement Life Insurance Plan

        One of the more popular type of life insurance is an income replacement life insurance plan. The whole idea behind these plans is to enable the policyholder’s beneficiary to not only be able to look after their short term needs, but also the long-term ones.

        How they work

        The typical working of an income replacement life insurance plan is such that the benefit pay out is divided in 2 parts. A specified portion of the benefit will be paid to the beneficiary in lump sum, while the remainder of the benefit is paid over a pre-set period or number of years, in regular, equal monthly instalments. For example, a policyholder has taken an income replacement plan which gives a sum assured of Rs.2 crore. Now the policyholder has the flexibility to allocate a part of that sum assured in two parts wherein one part will be paid in lump sum to the beneficiary on the event of the policyholder’s death, while the remaining part of the sum will be paid to the beneficiary in monthly instalments over a span of 10 years, to help them take care of long-term expenses.

        It is important to know that income replacement plans are available in multiple variants. The main difference between these variants is in terms of the benefit pay-out schedule and structure. Under one variant, the monthly pay out will increase at a pre-set percentage, based on the rate of inflation. Under the second variant, the benefit pay out is only provided in the form of monthly pay outs for a specified number of years.

        4th December 2017

      • Why It's Important to Know The Difference Between Insurance and Investment

        Insurance and investment are two things which form a very important part of your financial portfolio. Insurance provides you with protection against risks like specific losses, illness, death, damage, in exchange for premiums, investments turn for payment of a specified premium. Invest, on the other hand, entails investing money in financial instruments which help grow your capital.When it comes to securing your financial future, the right insurance policy can have a significant impact on your wealth. After all, the idea if not to buy the most expensive insurance plan, but the one which will help build your investment.

        Lets compare between term insurance and an endowment/money back plan. From the point of investing, a majority of people will go with the endowment/money back plan which provides a maturity benefit after the policy expires. Premiums for endowment policies are significantly higher than those of term insurance plans.

        Nearly 35% - 40% of your investment goes into the pockets of insurance agents as commission. Which leaves about 60% remaining, which is the actual amount which is directed towards providing insurance cover and investment.

        Considering this, it is hard to guess what the wiser thing to do here is. It is wiser to calculate the amount of cover you really need, instead of purchasing a costly insurance plan which comes with high premiums and provides you returns later. Buying a cheaper term insurance plan is a better option here because the money which you have saved can instead be invested in another avenue like a mutual fund. When it comes to insurance. it is very important to know the difference between insurance and investment.

        4th December 2017

      • LIC Asks Policyholders to Link Aadhaar & PAN to policies

        LIC, India’s biggest life insurance provider has instructed its policyholders to link their Aadhaar and PAN to their LIC policies. The message has been communicated to the policyholders via a notice on the LIC website. To facilitate the same, LIC has come up system which will enable policyholders to link their Aadhaar details with their policies online. Insurance regulator IRDAI (Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India) had earlier stated that it is mandatory to link the Aadhaar number with insurance policies. Following this, the regulator had instructed insurers to comply with the statutory norms. IRDAI has said, "The Authority clarifies that, linkage of Aadhaar number to insurance policies is mandatory under the Prevention of Money Laundering (Maintenance of Records) Second Amendment Rules, 2017," IRDAI said.

        1st December 2017

      • Life Insurance Basics: In Brief

        The concept of life insurance is quite a simple and uncomplicated one to understand. The basic idea of a life insurance plan is to purchase a policy with a specified amount of sum assured. On the event of your death, the policy will provide the sum assured to your beneficiary or nominee which you name. This is the simple part. The slightly more complicated parts are the ones which come before you even take a policy. Questions such as how much coverage to take? Which type of life insurance plan is best suited for you? What is the premium payout option should you choose? And so on and so forth.

        A life insurance policy can be an indispensable need for someone who has dependents to support, but may not be as important for someone who doesn’t have to support anyone financially. For those with dependents like young children, a spouse, or even aged parents, the responsibilities and expenses can increase with time.

        Various Purposes of life insurance

        The purpose for which you use your life insurance policy will depend on your financial situation. People take life insurance plans for purposes like estate planning, leaving a legacy for their children, transferring wealth, achieving estate tax liquidity, etc. Before you take a policy, ensure that you assess your situation so that you don’t end up buying the wrong policy. Also, younger people pay lesser towards life insurance premiums.

        How much life cover should you get?

        When it comes to deciding the amount of life coverage, the most followed rule of thumb is that the amount of cover must be approximately 6 to 8 times of your total yearly income. However, there are other factors to consider as well. Take into account the number of dependent family members, the time period for which they will depend on you, mortgage, loans, liabilities, children’s upbringing expenses, estate planning, etc. If your spouse is working, you must take into account their income at present and what it is likely to be in the future.

        Which type of life insurance plan should you get?

        When you are undecided about the type of life policy you need, just go by the principle of choosing one which ensures to provide enough to your family members when you are not around. This is the one and only rule that you must stick to when selecting a policy. After all, the whole point of taking a life insurance plan is to ensure that your family is financially provided for in your absence. This becomes especially important if

        You have mortgages and loans remaining to be paid off, and if you pass away, the burden would fall on your family members.

        1st December 2017

      • Cytecare looks to raise $75 million to expand Cancer Care hospital chain

        Cytecare, which currently runs a Cancer Care centre/hospital in Bangalore, is looking to raise a sum of $75 million in an effort to expand their chain of cancer care hospitals. Cytecare had previously raised $30 million from high net worth individuals to build their Bangalore hospital. It was also reported that their Bangalore-based hospital, which launched just a year ago, will break even in the near future. Cytecare is trying to identify a location within the country to launch their second hospital, at present.

        News and updates on Cancer insurance

        29 November 2017

      • LIC launches Cancer Care Insurance Plan

        Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) will be launching a cancer care policy as part of their health insurance offering. The sum assured for the said policy will range between Rs.10 lakh and Rs.50 lakh. The cancer care policy is a non-linked insurance plan and the premiums are payable on an annual or bi-annual basis. Any individual between the ages of 20 and 65 years can purchase this policy, which is also available digitally on the insurer’s website.

        Upon the diagnosis of early-stage cancer, the insurer will pay the policyholder 25% of the payable benefit and future premiums will be waived for the next three years. If the policyholder is diagnosed with major-stage cancer, the insurer will pay 100% of the sum assured. In addition, an income benefit which will amount to 1% of the overall sum assured will be paid every month for the coming 10 years, regardless of whether the policyholder survives this period or not. Future premiums will also be waived off.

        News and updates on Cancer insurance

        15 November 2017

      • Kotak Life Introduced Kotak e-Term Plan

        Kotak Mahindra Old Mutual Life Insurance recently announced the launch of a new comprehensive term insurance plan called ‘Kotak e-Term Plan’. This term plan offers 3 coverage options – Life option, Life Plus option, and Life Secure option - each of which offer varying benefits.

        Under the Life option, the policyholder will get pure risk protection against death which has resulted from any cause. Under the Life Plus option, customers get the benefit of not only the Life option, but also additional cover against death following an accident. Under the Life Secure option, the policy holder will get the added benefit of waiver of future premiums and continued insurance cover in the event of total & permanent disability.

        Under the Kotak e-Term plan, customers also have the option to get add-on cover to enhance their coverage to take care of increased responsibilities at important stages of their life, or even at specific intervals. The plan also offers you the flexibility to choose from 3 pay out options by which the nominee will receive the benefit amount. These options include benefit payout in lump sum, in the form of a recurring yearly payout or by way of an increasing recurring yearly payout.

        30th November 2017

      • ‘Provide Group Insurance to Bar Council Members’, Rajasthan High Court

        The Rajasthan High Court has urged the Bar Council of Rajasthan (BCR) to provide it’s members with the facility of group life insurance. In Rajasthan, about 65,000 lawyers are members of the Rajasthan Bar council.

        The petition for this was given by Mr. Lokesh Sharma, the direction for which was given by the single bench of Justice M N Bhandari. The court noted that the Bar Council of Rajasthan possesses funds worth Rs.71 crore, and is also collecting an annual fund worth Rs.7 crore by way of member contributions.

        Currently, as the court also observed, the maximum amount which a member is entitled to in the event of a fatality is Rs.2.5 lakh, which is unreasonably low and must be increased. It was also noted by the counsels to the petitioner that even though there is a provision in place for providing group life insurance, the welfare fund committee has not provided the members with the benefit due under the group life insurance.

        29th November 2017

      • What Not To Do – Term Plan Claim Settlement

        When it comes to life insurance, most people have one nagging concern. Claim settlement. Most policyholders are concerned whether, in the event of their death, will the nominee have to make endless rounds of the insurer’s office, submit document after document, and basically struggle to get the insurance claim paid, which is supposed to be rightfully theirs.

        When it comes to term insurance, people tend to forget that this is a relatively uncomplicated product with little in terms of fine print. It all boils down to the fact that whether or not the policyholder has been honest, clear, and careful at the time of applying for the policy and also when it comes to providing information to the insurer. If they have followed the set protocol when it comes to applying for a term plan, there are almost zero chances that their claim will be rejected or even delayed.

        There are quite a few mistakes which people make when it comes to buying a term plan, which can often lead to rejection of claim. Here is a brief list of mistakes to avoid.

        • Submitting incomplete information, concealing facts or providing incorrect information while applying for the plan.
        • Not fully disclosing your non-medical information, such as income, occupation, geographical location, etc.
        • Disclosing incomplete or incorrect information pertaining to your medical status, lifestyle, and family history.
        • Not disclosing or giving incorrect information regarding any pre-existing diseases that you have. This information is very crucial when it comes to getting health-related riders like critical illness, with your term plan.
        • Avoid taking the medical test if you have opted for a high sum-assured which requires the applicant to undergo one.
        • Not updating their nomination details after every important life event like marriage, starting a family, etc.
        • Not keeping your nominee prepared and aware about the claim filing and settlement process.
        • Letting the policy lapse by forgetting or discontinuing premium payments.
        • If your nominee delays the claim filing much after the claim has occurred.

        27th November 2017

      • India First Life Looking To Be Included Among Top Insurance Companies

        IndiaFirst, one of the country’s top private insurance provider, is employing aggressive marketing in target segments like rural regions to clinch a place on the list of top ten insurance providers in the industry. At present, IndiaFirst is placed on the 12th position from the top, on a list which comprises of 23 life insurance providers, including the state-owned Life Insurance Corporation (LIC). To expand its network and reach to the rural masses, IndiaFirst plans to sell policies via the vast and well-spread network of 2.70 lakh CSCs or Common Service Centres located across India.

        IndiaFirst Life currently has a customer base of over 1.1 crore and was launched in 2010 following a joint venture between Bank of Baroda, Andhra Bank, and the UK-based leading risk, wealth and investment brand called Legal & General.

        29th November 2017

      • India First Life Launches First Micro-insurance plan Called ‘Insurance Khata’

        IndiaFirst Life Insurance (IndiaFirst Life), one of India’s leading life insurance provider, recently unveiled a one-of-a-kind micro-insurance plan called ‘Insurance Khata’. This plan has been launched mainly for individuals who are employed with the informal sector and agricultural labourers who earn seasonal incomes. This plan is otherwise known as a recurring single premium term with return of premium (TROP), in common industry terms.

        The ‘Insurance Khata’ micro-insurance plan will be offered to the target audience primarily via the 2.4 lakh Common Service Centres (CSC) which are located across India. The same was communicated at the product launch event by R.M.Vishakha, MD & CEO at IndiaFirst Insurance.

        The most attractive feature of this micro-insurance plan is that the plan holder has the flexibility to pay premiums in parts, as per their convenience. Given the income limitations that the target group of this plan faces, the Insurance Khata plan has been designed in such a way so that the total premium paid by the policyholder will be returned to them at the end of the policy term, all the while providing life insurance cover as well. Additionally, the cost of servicing of this plan is low.

        Under this plan, customers can continue to increase the sum assured and continue getting paid their premiums back, as they mature. This plan is available in 3 tenure options of 5 years, 7 years, and 10 years.

        28th November 2017

      • Risks You Run On Stopping Your Life Insurance Premium

        Have you ever wondered what happens to your insurance policy when you cease premium payments on it? Not many people know it, but if you suddenly stop premium payment on your life insurance policy, whether you are not satisfied with it, or are financially unable to pay the premiums, it can lead to consequences. To give you an idea, we have taken the example of a traditional life policy and will list down the options one has when they stop making premium payments on this specific policy.

        What Is a Traditional Life Insurance Policy?

        A traditional life insurance plan is one which combines the elements of savings with protection. In addition to getting a pay out, the policyholder is also entitled to a maturity bonus. Traditional plans invest in fixed-income investments which usually offer returns of 4% to 6%.

        When Premiums Are Discontinued

        Life insurance as we know, is a long term agreement. Due to this, if you stop premium payments on it suddenly, the maturity benefit will be affected and you may end up not getting the same at all. However, if you are not able to continue your traditional policy due to unavoidable reasons, here are the options you have to minimize the damage.

        Surrender the policy

        Your first option is to surrender the policy. Now this option is only available if your policy attains surrender value. Policies attain a surrender value only after premiums have been duly paid for 2-3 years, based on the terms of the plan. When you surrender your policy, the surrender amount is immediately paid to you, but once the policy is surrendered, the life cover will cease immediately. Also, depending on the year you surrender the policy, there may or may not be tax implication on the same.

        Paid-up policy

        A policy attains paid-up status only if the policyholder ceases premium payments on a policy which has attained surrender value. When a policy becomes a paid–up policy, it will continue to provide maturity benefit and life cover, but both will be proportionally lower. This calculation is done based amount of premiums due versus the amount of premiums paid against the policy. Paid-up policies are not eligible for bonus. Policyholders receive the paid-up value of the policy when it matures.

        Lapse

        A policy will lapse and not offer benefits any longer if it is discontinued after it has attained surrender value but is still within the initial years of the policy term.

        Revival

        If all the requisite conditions have been met, most companies will allow customers to revive a discontinued policy. For revival, the policyholder will be required to submit a late fee, in addition to making pending premium payments.

        27th November 2017

      • Riders That Can Help Enhance The Coverage of A Term Plan

        When it comes to term insurance, simply getting a plan is often not sufficient. Term plans, as we know, provide protection only against the risk of death. They don’t provide cover against other risks such as accidental disability (permanent or partial), loss of income due to disability, etc. While people do tend to choose term plans with care, they often forget about getting riders.

        Riders are add-on covers that can be taken over and above your base term plan and will provide added coverage. If you are looking to get a rider over your term plan, here are some which you must consider getting.

        Waiver of Premium Rider – This rider will help ensure that you are financially independent especially when misfortune strikes. Insurance coverage is provided in return of premiums, which are decided based on the policyholder’s income and employment status. However, if they were to lose their job and or are not able to make enough to make ends meet, they would still have to pay insurance premiums. What this rider does, is waive your future policy premiums so you can save that money to take care of other essential expenses. This way you continue to be protected and also save additional money.

        Critical Illness Rider – If you are someone who has a family history of a critical illness, then this rider is fit for you. Medical expenses are rising and the costs of treating critical illnesses are is simply skyrocketing. Often, people end up spending their life-savings towards the treatment of a critical illness. This is when a critical illness rider can be invaluable as it helps cover the costs the treatment of such illnesses. Under this rider, you usually gets a lump sum amount on the diagnosis of a critical illness. The same can be used to pay for the treatment.

        Accidental Death Rider – This rider has been designed to provide your loved ones with additional financial support if the policyholder passes away. Under the rider, the nominee is entitled to an additional sum assured, which is provided over and above the sum assured of the base term plan. With this rider, you can ensure that your family has financial assistance at a time when they may most need it.

        24th November 2017

      • Types of Life Insurance

        When it comes to life insurance, it is very important to know the type of insurance that will fit your particular requirements. As we all know, different individuals have differing needs when it comes to insurance coverage. Hence, it is important to know about the different kinds of life insurance plan that are there and what benefits they offer.

        Term Insurance – This type of insurance is the purest form of life insurance where coverage is offered specifically against the risk of death. Term plans are valid only for a specific duration like 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, and 30 years. If the policyholder passes away before the policy expires, their nominee will be entitled to a death benefit. However, there are no benefits paid on survival past the policy expiry date. There is also no saving component included in term plans.

        Whole Life Insurance – Whole life insurance plans, unlike term plans, offer insurance cover for an unlimited period of time. These plans not only offer a death benefit, but also sometimes a survival/maturity benefit, which can be given in the form of a legacy to your loved ones.

        Endowment Policy – Endowment policies are the typical life insurance policies which provide not only a death benefit, but also a maturity benefit. If the policyholder dies before the end of the policy term, or is rendered disabled due to an accident before the policy term is over, their nominee will be entitled to receive the death benefit. If the policyholder lives through the policy term, they will be entitled to a maturity benefit, which also acts as a saving component.

        Children’s Policies – For those who wish to ensure financial coverage for their children, child insurance plans are the right option. These are like regular life insurance plans where the nominee or policyholder will be your child, who will be entitled to receive the benefits under the policy, if anything were to happen to you. With child insurance policies, you can create a corpus which goes to your child when they attain a certain age.

        24th November 2017

      • SBI Life to Cut Premiums For Term Plans

        Competition in the insurance market is currently quite tough. Many insurers have taken measures to gain market share by slashing their policy rates. Among the many to do so is India’s leading private life insurance provider, SBI Life, which is the latest to hop on the bandwagon to lower rates for their term plans. The announcement for the same is expected to be made in December. The revision of the premium will be done on the basis of the insured individual’s age and the tenure of their policy.

        Mr. Arijit Basu, MD & CEO, SBI Life Insurance said that the company has been reviewing premiums of their plans every 4-5 years, on the basis of the mortality experience. Due to increased awareness, the general health status of the target age group opting for term insurance has seen improvement. Considering this, the insurer has decided to lower the premiums. He also said that SBI Life is relying on their digital and physical expansion to get a greater stronghold in the domestic market. The insurer currently has 765 branches located across India, and plans to open 35 more in the near future, making the total count at 800. With their expanded presence, the company aims at gaining greater exposure. Also, the company is constantly investing in IT, and 25% of their total expenditure is directed towards IT, said Mr. Basu.

        23rd November 2017

      • Calculate How Much Life Insurance You Need With This DIY Life Insurance Calculator

        For most of us, life insurance is something that simply cannot be ignored. While those who are not supporting any dependents may not need it as much as those individuals who have dependents relying on their financial support. With life insurance, you can stay assured that your dependents will stay financially protected in the unfortunate event of your death.

        The first step in buying a life insurance policy is determining how much life insurance you actually need. This is something you can find out by asking yourself 3 important questions. First, is there anyone who is financially dependent on you? Second, if you do have a dependent, for how long will they depend on you? And third, considering annual inflation @ 7%, how much funds would they need, including payments and liabilities?

        With this approach, it will become much simpler for you to actually arrive at a figure which is ideal for you, considering your dependents and their needs. Also, while you are at it, do be cautious to not over-insure or under-insure yourself, as both these can prove to be financially harmful in the long run. Take help from an expert or professional to figure out the amount that is ideal for you.

        22nd November 2017

      • Why Choose Whole Life Insurance

        What is whole life insurance?

        As the name suggests, whole life policies are life insurance plans which provide cover for a lifetime. Under a whole life plan, policyholders usually have the freedom to choose the sum assured, and tenure of the policy, besides other things. The policy provides survival or maturity benefit and premium collection may be done either or a specified period during the policy or throughout the policy tenure.

        Benefits of Whole Life Plans

        Lifetime coverage – One of the most important benefit provided by a whole life plan is that it provides insurance coverage for your entire life. Whole life policies are also known as permanent policies for this reason. There is no specific time period defined for the policy’s tenure and it goes on indefinitely. This eliminates the hassle of having to look for a new policy as your policy will go one till you die.

        Predictable Premiums – The other benefit which whole life policies offer is consistency in premiums. Premiums for whole life policies will stay the same, which means that you don’t have to worry about any hike in premium as you grow older or your health deteriorates.

        Cash Value – Lastly, when you purchase a whole life policy, you don’t lose your money in premiums. The policy accumulate a cash value as the policy term progresses. A part of your policy premium is redirected towards the providing coverage while the rest is redirected to a savings account. Compare this with a term plan where if you survive the policy term, you are not entitled to any benefit. The money that goes into savings accounts earns dividends and will increase over time. Hence, it is safe to say, whole life policies are an ideal insurance and retirement coverage option.

        22nd November 2017

      • IndiaFirst Life Insurance targets 43% Growth in Net Profit this fiscal

        IndiaFirst Life Insurance is eyeing a growth of 43% in its net profit in the current fiscal. The company’s net profit during 2016-2017 was Rs.35 crore, and they are expecting to achieve a net profit if Rs.50 crore this year. The company is looking to retain their position as the fastest growing private-sector life insurance company by achieving this target.

        The company which launched in the year 2009 attained its break-even in just the 6th year after its inception. The insurer currently offers a total of 35 insurance products, which include 21 individual plan, 8 group plans, 5 combi plans, and one rider. The latest offering from IndiaFirst is a child protection policy called Little Champ.

        20th November 2017

      • HDFC Standard Life’s Shares list at 27% over Issue Price

        HDFC Standard Life Insurance, the third-largest private sector life insurance firm in India, saw a strong market debut with shares trading as high as 27% due to good subscription and positive market conditions. The firm’s shares opened at Rs.313 against the issue price of Rs.290. The shares recorded an intra-day high of Rs.369 and an intra-day low of Rs.303.

        The company’s Rs.8,695 crore IPO was oversubscribed 4.9 times by the last day of the bidding process, which began on 7 November 2017 and ended on 9 November 2017. The issue involved the sale of up to 19,12,46,050 shares by HDFC and 10,85,81,768 shares by Standard Life Mauritius. Currently, HDFC and Standard Life hold a 51.69% and 29.35% stake in the life insurance firm, respectively.

        17th November 2017

      • Most common riders available with life insurance plans

        For individuals who are financially supporting dependents like young children, aged parents, or a spouse, getting a life insurance policy is a must. While life insurance policies are designed to provide all the necessary basic coverage, one always has the option of customizing the policy as per their lifestyle, with the help of add-on riders. Most insurers do offer riders along with life insurance plans to help the policyholder get enhanced coverage at a nominal cost. Some common riders available with life insurance policies listed below.

        Waiver of premium – This rider is offered by several insurers to help policyholders deal with a financial crunch following unfortunate situations. Usually, in the event of an accidental disability, or diagnosis of a critical illness, the rider will waive off future premiums either for a specified period, or for the remainder of the policy.

        Critical illness – This rider often acts as an income replacement. The amount that is paid under this rider is usually utilized towards meeting additional expenditures that have arisen due to the critical illness. While different plans will provide cover for differing critical ailments, it is wiser to find out which critical illnesses your insurer covers before getting the policy. Some major life-threatening diseases that are usually covered under critical illness riders are cancer, heart attack, tumour, kidney disorders, etc.

        Accidental death rider – Though nearly all term plans do provide cover against accidental death, this rider has been introduced especially for the beneficiaries. Therefore, in case of your accidental death, you nominees will not only get the death benefit payable under the base plan, but also the sum assured payable under the rider. The amount of the sum assured under the rider can either be selected by the policyholder, or could be a pre-decided amount set by the insurer.

        21st November 2017

      • Getting A Loan Against Your Insurance Policy

        Not many people are aware that their life insurance policy can often also become a blessing in disguise in more than one ways. For instance, if you ever find yourself in urgent need of cash, you can take a loan against your life insurance policy. While many banks allow people to pledge their life insurance policy for a loan, many insurers also provide their customers with loans in times of need. Here’s how it works.

        Policies against which loans can be taken

        To begin with, it is important to know the types of life insurance policies which you can get a loan against. Commonly, one can avail a loan against an endowment policy, and a money-back policy. However, loans are usually not provided against Unit Linked Insurance Policies (ULIPs) and term insurance policies.

        How is loan amount determined

        After you have confirmed that you are eligible for a loan against your policy, the next thing to find out is the loan amount that you are eligible for based on your policy. For loans taken against life insurance policies, the loan amount is usually determined based on certain factors like the policy’s surrender value, number of premiums you have paid towards the policy, and the number of years that the policy has completed. The surrender value of a policy is the policy’s current value in the time it is terminated voluntarily by the policyholder. Therefore, if you have paid a higher number of premiums towards your policy and the greater the number of years that the policy has been in force, the higher will be it’s surrender value. As a result, the higher the surrender value of the policy, the greater will be the loan amount you can be eligible for against the policy. For instance, your policy which provides cover for up to Rs.10 lakh, has a surrender value of Rs.4 lakh. The loan amount that you could be eligible for against your policy could be anywhere around Rs.3.20 lakh to Rs.3.60 lakh.

        Also, the eligibility of getting a loan against your life insurance policy will also depend on the policy being in force for a minimum period of 3 years. Hence, premiums on the policy must be paid for a minimum period of 3 years for one to be eligible to take a loan against it.

        The bank/insurance company may or may not charge a processing fee for loan taken against an insurance policy. Also, interest charged on loans taken against an insurance policy are relatively lower than those charged by with a personal loan.

        21st November 2017

      • Aegon Life Seeking Fintech Partnerships In Digital Drive

        In an effort to expand it’s customer base via the digital platform, Aegon Life Insurance looking to establish partnerships with fintech companies. The company is looking to start selling its policies online. When it comes to premium collection, among the 23 private sector life insurance providers, Aegon Life is only a step ahead of Sahara Life. The top position on the list is help by none other than LIC (Life Insurance corporation), which is the sole state-owned life insurer in the life insurance segment.

        During and interaction, Mr. Saibal Ghosh, Chief Investment Officer, Aegon Life Insurance, said that though market share is something that the company is constantly striving for, the current point of focus is to build the business more towards direct-to-customer and also increase adoption of digital mediums especially those with an omni-channel concept. Further adding to this statement, he said that the company’s focus will largely be on digital, considering that digital is set to the the next big thing. With this in mind, Aegon Life is seeking digital partners and also financial services companies which focus on digital.

        Talking of premium collection, Aegon Life earns around 30-35% or one-third of its business via digital platforms such as the mobile application or internet-based online channels. The remaining policies are sold through the company’s direct channel consisting of sales personnel.

        As per the data released by IRDAI (Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India), in October 2017, the insurer’s new premium collection increased by more than double Rs.9.37 crore, as compared to Rs.4.35 crore recorded in October 2016. During the period of April-October 2017-18, the insurer’s new premium increased by 74.4% to Rs.58.85 crore, as opposed to Rs.33.74 crore recorded earlier for the corresponding period.

        20th November 2017

      • Good teamwork & sound processes the reason behind IndiaFirst’s success, says CEO RM Vishakha

        IndiaFirst, one of the country’s leading insurance provider, commenced operations 8 years ago. Celebrating their anniversary recently, the company’s CEO, R.M. Vishakha took the occasion to speak about the company’s philosophy and core mission of securing lives and creating value.

        IndiaFirst started operations as the 23rd entrant in the insurance industry. Over the years, the company has grown to and now sits at the 13th position from the top, aiming to break into the top 10 list in the near future. Since its inception, the insurer has served about 10 million customers and currently has nearly 4.5 million on their books.

        The company made its first profit at the end of its 5th year of operation. In the last fiscal (2016-17) recorded a profit of Rs.35 crore on a gross written premium of Rs.2,265 crore. The insurer’s individual premiums grew at 82% in the last fiscal, while this fiscal, the figures continue to climb at a whopping 108%.

        Ms. RM Vishakha attributes this more than impressive growth to a balance of good teamwork and establishment of sound processes, which collectively have started to deliver results. She also mentioned the importance of setting up processes which help retain the passion of the sales force so that there is a balance which is always maintained between passion and processes.

        Also a part of retaining this balance is to weed out defects in the process which often resulted in mis-selling earlier. The company has set guidelines and a rule engine when it comes to selling policies to potentially vulnerable customers. This process helps check whether or not the policy has been sold to the right customer. In the same way, after the sale of the policy, the insurer carries out a back-end check which is part of the pre-issuance process where the customer is asked whether or not they have understood the product they have purchased and also to find out whether or not the policy may have been mis-sold to them. The company has also modified its sales process wherein any mis-selling of policies by sales persons will result in consequences. This move has cut mis-selling of policies by half and has increased customer persistency ratios from 63% to 74%.

        20th November 2017

      • SBI Life Likely To Lower Premiums To Gain Back Market Share From Private Players

        In an effort to catch up with its private sector rivals like ICICI Prudential Life, and HDFC Life, SBI Life is likely to lower the premium rates on it’s term plans by over a quarter in an increasingly competitive insurance market. SBI Life is expected to bring down their premium rates by as much as 30%.

        When compared, a 30-year-old, male, non-smoker individual shells out Rs.13,796 for a Rs.1 crore cover under the e-Shield term plan offered by SBI Life. After the premium cut, this cost would fall down to almost Rs.10,000. However, the same person would be paying Rs.10,798 for a similar plan by ICICI Prudential; Rs.8,968 at Kotak Life, and Rs.11,480 at HDFC Life.

        SBI Life said the reduction of premium rates has been facilitated by the lower costs for issuance of online term policies. When compared to other private players, SBI Life has the lowest expense ratios. The insurer has also improved its expense parameters which have, in turn, helped with effective pricing of the products.

        17th November 2017

      • Postal Life Insurance Likely To Become Major Business Segment For India Post

        The Department of Posts (India Post) has high hopes from the Postal Life Insurance (PLI) and Rural PLI schemes, which are expected to become a prospective business segment in the coming months. In Andhra Pradesh, the business turnover from these two insurance schemes contributes to nearly 10-12% of the business volume. This percentage is only expected to grow to almost 20% by the end of the current fiscal.

        Mr. V. Santhanaraman, Director of Postal Services, Kurnool, recently inaugurated the Aadhaar updation centre at the Tirupati Head Post Office. Speaking on the occasion, he said that India Post is planning to expand operations of several of it’s business propositions.

        PLI was first introduced in 1884 and was meant for employees working with the Posts and Telegraphs department. However, post-independence, the service was extended to State and Central Govt. employees after independence. A modified version, known as ‘Rural Postal Life Insurance’ was launched in the 1990s, in an effort to offer life insurance services to the rural sector.

        Considering the great success of the Postal Life Insruance scheme till now, India Post is now contemplating to extend this service to other sections of the society such as government school teachers, affiliated college lecturers, registered professionals and even employees who are hired by the State Govt. on contractual basis. Mr. Santhanaraman also announced that considering there is an ever-growing demandfor enrolment of new entries, Aadhaar updation centres will soon be converted into Aadhaar enrolment centres.

        16th November 2017

      • HDFC Standard Life Insurance Debuts On Bourses On Nov 17

        Following a very positive response on their public issue, HDFC Standard Life Insurance Company is all set to make their debut on bourses on 17 Nov 2017. The life insurance provider is a subsidiary of HDFC, one of India’s biggest housing finance company. For their debut, the issue price has been fixed at the higher end of the price band of Rs.275-290 per share.

        After ICICI prudential Life, and SBI Life, HDFC Standard Life will become the third life insurance provider to be listed on the exchange. Their Rs.8,695-crore initial public offer (IPO) which was held between 7 Nov to 9 Nov was subscribed 4.90 times. During the public offer, there was 16.60 times subscription in the qualified institutional buyers (QIBs) category, 2.29 times subscription in the non-institutional investor category, and 94% subscription in the retail investor category.

        HDFC Standard’s public issue consisted of 19,12,46,050 equity shares by HDFC, and up to 10,85,81,768 shares by Standard Life Mauritius. Currently, HDFC is the owner of 51.69% stake in the HDFC Standard Life joint venture, while the Mauritius based Stand Life owns nearly 29.35% stake. For the public offer, the global coordinators and book running lead managers were Morgan Stanley India Company, HDFC Bank, Credit Suisse Securities (India), CLSA India and Nomura Financial Advisory and Securities (India).

        17th November 2017

      • Tips On How To Choose The Best Life Insurance Policy

        Purchasing life insurance is a process which requires some caution and understanding. If you simply go and buy the first life insurance plan that is offered to you by an insurer, you can bet that it won’t be the right plan for you. Before you purchase life insurance, you must pay attention to your needs and requirements. And that is just the start. There is a lot more that is involved in the process of identifying your needs and matching them to the right life insurance plan that is available. We bring you some important tips which can make the task of selecting and purchasing the right life insurance plan easier for you.

        Never choose a life insurance policy based only on the premium. If you go for a cheaper policy, it is more than likely that the policy will not offer adequate coverage for your needs. Before you even begin to shortlist policies, evaluate your needs to find out which type of life insurance plan is best suited for you.

        It is most ideal to invest in a life insurance policy when you are young. This is because, the younger you are, the healthier you are likely to be, hence the lower your premiums are likely to be as well.

        There are various aspects which you must consider when evaluating a life insurance policy for yourself. Consider the policy’s benefits, features, sum assured it provides, the riders it offers, exclusions, terms & conditions, etc.

        Choose the policy period as per your requirement. When deciding the tenure of the plan, consider your liabilities and expenses such as mortgages, children’s upbringing, education, wedding, your retirement, etc.

        Take your age into consideration when you choose a life insurance plan.

        It is advisable to pick a plan which offers living benefits.

        Find out about the policy’s free look period before you buy it. Check the free look period of the policy in advance. It is advisable to compare between multiple policies online so you can see which one offers the benefits that you need and generally ticks all the boxes that you want it to.

        15th November 2017

      • Kotak Life Insurance Not Planning To Go Public In The Near Future

        Kotak Life Insurance, India’s 7th largest insurance provider, recently announced that it has no plans of getting publicly listed for at least the coming the 4 to 6 quarters. In the recent public offers launched by major players like SBI Life Insurance, and HDFC Standard Life, the large investors have given a fairly positive response. Mr. G. Murlidhar, Managing Director at Kotak Life said that the company does not have any plans on going public as of now. in terms of capital, the insurer is currently well-capitalized and is in no need of additional funds.

        As per reports, Kotak Life is not the only company which is refraining from hopping on to the IPO bandwagon. Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance and Bajaj Allianz General Insurance, two of Bajaj Finserv’s insurance subsidiaries, are also not planning on going public anytime soon.

        2017 has seen the launch of some very successful IPO, especially those launched by big players like ICICI Lombard, General Insurance Corporation (GIC Re), and New India Assurance, which saw major subscription by institutional buyers. However, there was not much subscription from retail investors.

        Speaking of premium, Kotak Life registered a 21% year-on-year growth in new business premium business which stood at Rs.1385 crore at the end of October 2017. Kotak Life is now wholly owned by Kotak Mahindra Bank after the latter acquired 26% stake from Old Mutual Plc for Rs.1292 crore. Kotak Life also stood ahead of Life Insurance Corporation, having collected total new premium collected worth Rs.105939 crore by Oct 2017, while LIC collected Rs.77978 crore.

        14th November 2017

      • Deciding How Much Insurance You Need

        While buying life insurance is not difficult in itself, it is however the process that must be undertaken with care. Before buying life insurance, one needs to find out the amount of insurance coverage they actually require. There are some important factors which come into play when it comes to determining the life insurance coverage one requires, which are as follows:

        · Current assets – Take stock of all your current assets such as your bank savings, investments, PPF savings (Public Provident Fund), fixed deposits, etc. Remember, the greater your assets, the lower will be the insurance coverage you will need.

        · Current debts – Also take stock of all your current and likely future debts. The higher your debt (current and future), the higher will be the amount of insurance you will need to cover your dependents against the burden of that debt. Debts includes home mortgage payments, any financial liability, credit cards dues, any other loan payments, etc.

        · Your family’s requirements – When it comes to deciding your insurance requirements, it is crucial that you go over your family’s expenses. The few aspects to keep in mind are the cost of enabling your family to maintain their lifestyle when you are no longer around, in how many years will your minor children become self-dependent, have you enough savings so that your spouse may be financially secure after retirement, etc.

        · Additional expenses – Just like every individual is unique, every family will also be unique, in terms of their situation. Often, families have ailing elderly who need constant medical attention, or a specially abled child who might also be in need of specialized medical attention. If you have someone in your family who would require special attention in the future, this attention will also be an added cost. Make sure you account for this cost when calculating your insurance coverage, so such individuals are also well taken care of, if you are not around.

        13th November 2017

      • How Aviva’s Heart Care App Helped The Insurer Gain New Business

        With incidents of heart diseases on the rise, India has been rightly crowned as the ‘heart disease capital of the world’. As of 2015-16, only 30% of the country’s population has opted for health insurance. However, given the current stats, there is ample opportunity for insurers to gain market share. And Aviva Life Insurance has recently done so with great success, thanks to their digital endeavours.

        Aviva recently adopted a new business model which lays focus putting digital first. Aviva recently launched a new heart care product to expand their customer base. This product was launched across multiple digital channels such as social media, on the insurer’s online policy selling website Instalife, it’s mobile app, and the customer portal. Moreover, the insurer also launched a heart age calculator micro site to attract more customers.

        The entire process is fully automated from end-to-end and there is no human intervention. This product has enabled Aviva to carve a niche market segment that focuses on digitally savvy customers. The success of the product is quite evident as it helped the insurer increase their business volume by 10%, within the first six months. Aviva also recorded an uptick in their operational efficiency, thanks to the adoption of AI-based underwriting process.

        16th November 2017

      • Post-GST, Term Insurance Still A Preferred Tax-Saving Instrument

        Term insurance plans have always been and will continue to be popular, come what may. This is solely because of the benefits which these plans provide, which are financial security to your loved ones with a high sum assured at a low cost. Besides this, the other important benefit provided by term plans is tax savings.

        The Goods and Services Tax (GST) which was implemented in July 2017 has affected the demand and sale of innumerable commodities, some of which suddenly became more expensive, while a few became marginally cheaper. However, despite the changes, the demand for term insurance continues to remain, more or less, the same. Why? Here are some reasons:

          • Since GST has been rolled out, insurance experts have been of the view that one should look at the long term benefits provided by a life insurance policy, instead of delaying their purchase based on the 3% increase in premiums. This is because the policyholder is likely to get a higher sum assured at the same premium, not to forget the tax benefits on premium paid.

          • Term plans provide high sum assured at a low premium, which means that you can ensure greater protection of your loved ones at affordable costs. For instance, someone earning Rs.10 lakh per year can easily get a life cover worth Rs.1 crore.

          • Under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act, 1961, you can get tax exemption from your taxable income if you pay premiums for a term plan that you have taken either for yourself, your spouse, or your children. Tax benefits are provided for term plan premiums worth up to Rs.1.5 lakh.

          • Newer term plans which come with critical illness cover offer added tax benefits on premiums up to the amount of Rs.25,000 under Section 80D of the Income Tax Act, 1961. Also, benefits received by the beneficiaries are also exempt from tax under Section 10 (10D) of the Income Tax Act, 1961.

        16th November 2017

      • Life Insurance Corporation of India launches cancer cover policy

        LIC (Life Insurance Corporation of India), one of India’s oldest and most trusted life insurance provider has recently launched a new cancer cover health insurance policy. The sum assured under this policy ranges from Rs.10 lakh to Rs.50 lakh. This is a non-linked under which the premiums can be paid not only in a yearly but also in half-yearly mode.

        The new plan was launched today by Mr. R. Thamodharan, Zonal Manager for LIC South Zone. In addition to being available offline, this plan can also be purchased online, as the insurer informed in a press release. All individuals in the age group between 20 years to 65 years are eligible to take this plan. The release for the launch also mentioned that this plan has been introduced especially considering the ever-increasing incidents of cancer being diagnosed and the extremely prohibitive costs of treatment that accompany. This plan will work to protect individuals from being adversely affected financially if they are diagnosed with cancer.

        Under this plan, 25% of the lump sum benefit payable will be paid if the policyholder is diagnosed with an early stage of cancer. In addition to this, the premiums payable towards the policy will also be waived for the coming 3 years. In case the policyholder is diagnosed with a major stage of cancer, 100% of the Sum Assured or Increased Sum Assured under Option II of the plan will be payable. From this amount, any claims paid towards an earlier stage of cancer will be deducted.

        Under Major Stage cancer income benefit, 1% of Sum Assured will paid per month to the policyholder for a period of 10 years, whether or not the life assured survives the next 10 years or not. Also, in case of major stage cancer diagnosis, all future premiums payable towards the policy will be waived.

        15th November 2017

      • Top Term Insurance Plans For Working Women

        Working professionals, especially if they are the sole income earners in their household, have much to gain from a life insurance plan. Be it a man or a women, life insurance can provide financial security to their loved ones and families in the time of misfortune. Among the plethora of plans available out there, a term insurance plan is often the best option, not only in terms of the coverage it provides, but also economically. Those who are the sole breadwinners of their household must not ignore or delay getting a term insurance plan as it may come in necessary when you least expect it.

        For working women, especially single working mothers, purchasing a term insurance plan is absolutely necessary. Here, we bring you some quick points to remember when you are looking to get a term plan.

        · Choose only as per your needs – term plans are simple and easy to understand, and there are plenty of them available online. Get a plan only after you have assessed your needs.

        · Longer coverage period – When you invest in a term plan at a young age, it is wise to take a plan with a longer coverage term. For most term plans, the minimum entry age is 18 years, and the maximum is usually fixed at 65. Do remember, as your age increases, the premium of the term plan will also increase assuming greater risk involved.

        · Single mothers – For working women who are also single mothers, it is absolutely necessary to purchase a life insurance plan. Given that your child is dependent on you for everything, it is important you secure your child’s future in case you are no longer there to provide for them. In case of single parents with children, the coverage amount will be determined based on the parent’s income. If you have a loan, and a young child, your risk factor will automatically go up.

        14th November 2017

      • On Final Day Of IPO, HDFC Standard Life Insurance Shares Subscribed 4.89 Times

        On the closing day of the initial public offering (IPO), HDFC Standard Life Insurance Company witnessed a 4.89 times subscription. While the total issue size of the IPO is 21,97,59,218 shares, it received bids for a total of 1,07,50,87,700 shares as per the NSE data. Also, the reserved category for non-institutional buyers and non-institutional buyers were subscribed by 16.60 times and 2.29 times respectively. The total number of applications received for the IPO is 11.37 lakh applications.

        10th November 2017

      • What is the Right Way To Determine The Amount Of Your Insurance

        If you have any experience dealing with the insurance brokers or agents, they would tell you to take insurance for the value equal to seven times of your annual salary. In a real life scenario, that cannot be the ideal way to determine the value of your life insurance.

        The basic idea of life insurance is to replace income when the insurer is not available to take care of the expenses of the family. Thus, the correct way to determine the amount of life insurance would be to see if it covers the expenses it should cover in the prevailing times minus the value of already existing assets that can be used.

        Therefore, never try to buy a life insurance policy by multiplying 7 or any other number with your annual salary. The right value can be obtained by determining the expenses and seeing what part of it can be covered by your current financial assets and social security schemes.

        10th November 2017

      • Insurance Industry Needs To Come With Innovative Plans To Drive Growth

        If we look at some of the leading insurance markets in the world, India lags behind by a huge margin in bringing innovation to the overall insurance industry. Huge demographic changes are taking place in India at a very rapid pace as the socio-economic profile of the country is undergoing a transformation.

        With one-third of the population below the age of 35, there is a huge market that can be catered to. The Life Insurance industry must drive innovation to help citizens with better financial security plans during and after their life. The scenario demands product designers to go beyond the basic idea of insurance to shift from luxury to necessity.

        9th November 2017

      • Linking Aadhaar With Insurance Policy To Be Mandatory

        The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) has recently issued a circular for all insurance providers referring to a gazette notification of the central government which makes Aadhaar and PAN/Form 60 mandatory to avail all kinds of financial services. The insurance regulator has made it mandatory for insurance providers to link every individual policy with the respective Aadhaar. The circular will have legal implications and life and general insurance companies have to implement the same immediately. The process to link Aadhaar with the insurance policy will be similar to that of linking Aadhaar with the bank account.

        9th November 2017

      • HDFC Life’s IPO Gets Fully Subscribed On The Second Day

        The Initial Public Offer by HDFC Standard Life Insurance has been fully subscribed on the second day. The issue has already received a total of 2,68,35,900 bids at the cut-off price and a total of 17,79,06,400 bids as on Tuesday. Post the IPO, the market capital of the third largest private sector life insurance company will range between Rs.55,247 crores to Rs.58,260 crores at the lowest and highest share price band. The HDFC Standard Life IPO will close on November 9th.

        8 November 2017

      • HDFC Standard Life Insurance IPO To Begin On November 7th

        HDFC Standard Life Insurance Company’s IPO of Rs.8,695 will be open for subscription from 7th November to 9th November. The Insurance arm of the Housing Development Finance Corporation (HDFC) will be offering up to 29,98,27,818 equity shares, out of which up to 10,85,81,768 shares will be offered for sale by Standard Life (Mauritius Holdings) Limited which holds 34.75% shares in the company.

        The price band for the IPO will be Rs.275-290 each share and bids will be allowed for a least of 50 equity shares and in multiples of 50 for a greater volume. The IPO is aimed at enhancing the brand name of 'HDFC Life' and to offer liquidity to its current shareholders.

        7th November 2017

      • Life Insurance Is A Selfless Act To Ensure Protection For Your Loved Ones

        Even if you cannot enjoy the benefits of life insurance while you are alive, it is something to do for your loved ones and their wellbeing. Life insurance is something that people do not tend to think about when they are young, and free from commitments. However, as people grow older and take on bigger responsibilities such as getting married, buying a house, or having children, there are certain things they need to seriously give a thought to. One such thing is getting a life insurance policy.

        Besides protecting your family against any unanticipated events, a life insurance can have several other financial and tax benefits. For instance, when you apply for a home loan, it is better to also have a life insurance policy to protect your family from the debts that are to be repaid by you. While many people look at life insurance as an investment option these days, it can be instrumental in providing your family the much needed financial assistance in their most difficult times.

        7th November 2017

      • Insurance Industry Sees A 113% Jump In Premium Collection Since Demonetisation

        After government’s demonetisation exercise that took place in November 2016, insurance firms have collected Rs.16,061 crores of first-year premium which is 113% more than the previous year’s collection (As per Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India).

        The biggest beneficiary of the nullification of high currency notes was the life insurance industry. According to experts, the demonetisation exercise along with some other fiscal reforms will lead to a structural change in the way savings are channelised in the country. In the first half of the current economic year, the insurance industry witnessed an 18% growth while in the second half it grew by 23%.

        6th November 2017

      • Bajaj Allianz To Not Go For An IPO In Near Future

        Sanjiv Bajaj, Managing Director of Bajaj Finserv clarified recently that the two insurance companies namely Bajaj Allianz General Insurance and Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance are not looking for an IPO in the near future.

        In a financial conclave organised by the Bengal Chamber of Commerce, Sanjiv told that the two subsidiary insurance companies of Bajaj Finserv are well capitalized and that the solvency ratio of the company stands at 608% as on the end of September month.

        Several insurance companies including SBI Life Insurance, New India Assurance, and GIC have launched IPOs in the past few months. The IPO of HDFC Standard Life Insurance will also commence from November 7.

        6th November 2017

      • Life insurance Is More Than an Investment

        There is a growing trend when people are looking at insurance as an investment option rather than a protection. Especially, millennials prefer to invest their money into financial products instead of insurance as they expect quick and hefty returns from their investments and think there is ample time to get ready for the eventualities of death.

        Insurance is not an investment but a tool for protection in its truest sense. In India, people worry about the unforeseen events of life and what will happen to their loved ones after they are gone. But a very small percentage of people buy an insurance to secure their families in their difficult times. It’s time when people should realise that it’s not the return on investment (ROI) that they should look for when they buy a life insurance policy, it is the kind of benefits that their loved ones will receive after they are gone.

        A term insurance policy can be the most cost-effective way to safeguard the interests of your family in the event of your demise. While it is essential to have a mix of safe and risky assets, a term insurance policy should not be ignored.

        3rd November 2017

      • Additional Aspects of Insurance You Need To Be Aware of

        People in general are aware of the basic concept of insurance but the complexities around it tend to discourage them. However, there are certain aspects of an insurance that can have a range of benefits for policyholders. For instance, after a policy matures, the insured gets a loyalty addition to keep their policy active throughout the policy tenure.

        Most people are not aware of a few additional aspects such as ‘free look period’ and ‘premium reduction’. The ‘free look period’ feature allows policyholders to terminate the policy if they do not find the terms, policies, or the benefits of the policy satisfactory. The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDA) allows 15-20 days of ‘free look period’ for the policy tenure of less than three years.

        The ‘premium reduction’ feature on the other hand enables teetotallers and non-smokers to avail insurance at lesser premiums. The insurance provider executes a procedure called ‘underwriting’ to assess the health of a policy applicant. Based on certain observations, the insurance provider determines if an applicant is eligible for a lower premium.

        Apart from the above-mentioned benefits, a policyholder may also opt for other add-ons with a little more premium. Before buying an insurance policy, policy seekers should compare various available options through credible third-party websites and choose the one that best suits their requirements.

        3rd November 2017

      • Increase your Life Insurance Coverage with a Rider

        A rider is an add-on cover than one purchases with his/her insurance policy in order to increase the level of coverage offered by the base policy. Riders are usually available for an additional premium. The most popular riders for life insurance policies are the Permanent Disability Rider and the Accidental Death Rider. If the policyholder meets with certain eventualities that fall under the rider’s inclusion criteria, the rider sum assured, in addition to the base policy’s sum assured, will be payable.

        Features of a Rider

          • A rider is usually available at a lesser cost than if you were to purchase a standalone insurance policy.

          • Since the rider is linked to one’s base policy, the policyholder is only managing a single insurance policy and not two policies.

          • When purchasing a rider, one must pay attention to the sum assured. In most cases, the rider sum assured cannot exceed the sum assured of the base policy.

        2nd November 2017

      • HDFC Standard Life Insurance Open to Acquisitions

        HDFC Standard Life has said that it is open to acquisitions of both big and small insurance players, including the merger with Max Life, which fell apart earlier this year, provided prior issues are resolved. The insurance firm’s Rs.8,700 crore IPO will be opening on 7 November 2017. The company will be trading at a price band of Rs.275-Rs.290 per share.

        The company is a joint venture between HDFC Ltd and Standard Life. By way of the IPO, HDFC ltd will be diluting 9.52% of their stake in the insurance firm and Standard Life will be selling a 5.4% stake. At present, HDFC and Standard Life own a 61.21% and 34.75% stake in the insurance firm, respectively. After the IPO, this will reduce to 51.69% and 34.75%.

        2nd November 2017

      • Star Health Insurance launches Insurance Plan for Cancer Patients

        Star Health Insurance and Allied Insurance have launched an insurance plan especially catered for individuals diagnosed with Cancer – the Star Cancer Care Gold. The insurance plan has a sum insured up to Rs.5 lakh, and can be purchased for anyone between the ages of 5 months and 65 years, provided they have been diagnosed with either Stage 1 or Stage 2 of the disease. The policy can be purchased by individuals without undergoing a pre-policy medical screening.

        The policy also covers the risk of disease recurrence, spread of the disease, and a second diagnosis of cancer. Hospitalisation expenditures, surgical/non-surgical treatment, and interventional treatment for non-cancer related diseases and ailments are also covered under this policy. Just like a regular health insurance policy, this plan also provides members an accident cover. The insurer also has a pan-India network for easy accessibility.

        News and updates on Cancer insurance

        25 October 2017

      • Things to Consider before Purchasing a Life Insurance Policy

        There are several important benefits to purchasing a life insurance policy. However, before you purchase a life insurance policy, here are a few factors you should consider:

        Firstly you will need to do your research on the types of insurance plans that are available in the market, and opt for one that best suits your needs.

        You can then proceed to comparing between various plans available in the market, and opt for one with a competitive price.

        Next, you will need to choose a preferred sum assured amount. Keep in mind that the sum assured you opt for will have to be large enough to meet the needs of your loved ones.

        Look out for any add-on riders that you can purchase to enhance the policy.

        Go through the policy brochure or meet with a representative to understand the policy terms and conditions in detail.

        Lastly, you will need to pay you premium as per the mode you have opted for.

        31st October 2017

      • 3 Mistakes you Should Avoid when Purchasing a Life Insurance Policy

        Purchasing a life insurance policy is of the utmost importance if you want to secure the lives of your dependents. However, before you purchase your life insurance policy, ensure that you don’t commit these common mistakes, in order to make the most of your policy benefits.

        Underestimating one’s life span when opting for a policy tenure: Life insurance policies come with a certain policy tenure and coverage will only be provided within that period. If you outlive your policy, it can be hard to extend the policy coverage at that age. Hence, ensure that you opt for a large tenure when purchasing the policy.

        Assigning a nominee: The death benefit is usually paid to the nominee that you assign at the time of purchasing the policy. If you don’t assign a nominee, there could be legal complications when it comes to paying out the benefit. In addition, you must also ensure that you provide the right contact details of your nominee, so the insurer can reach them without delay.

        Buying a policy after an illness has been diagnosed: While insurers might provide policies to individuals who have already been diagnosed with an illness, you must note that the premium can be significantly higher. Hence, ensure that you purchase your policy well in advance, before the onset of any illnesses.

        31st October 2017

      • How To Claim Maturity Benefits From Life Insurance Policies

        A life insurance policy that promises maturity benefits comes with dual benefits. Firstly, the family gets death benefits if the policyholder passes away or gets permanently disabled. Secondly, and more importantly, if a policyholder outlives the tenure of the policy, they are entitled to receive maturity benefits which may sometimes be more than what their family would receive in case of the death of the insured. Filing a maturity claim may involve minimum paperwork and can be easier than you think. Read on to know the documents required and the process to claim maturity benefits on your life insurance policy.

        30th October 2017

      • You May Have Life Insurance, But Get Your Perspective Right

        When it comes to the life insurance industry, people either have extremely positive or extremely negative sentiments. A majority of people in India lack the required awareness about life insurance and have formed opinions based on limited understanding of the concept. While they perceive it to be only limited to death benefits, the real scope of a life insurance policy can be extended to three main aspects, namely protection, savings, and investment. Read on to know the important factors that you must consider before getting a life insurance policy and how you can benefit from different types of life insurance policies.

        30th October 2017

      • HDFC Standard Life IPO to Launch on 7 November

        HDFC Standard Life Insurance will open its IPO on 7 November 2017. The firm’s IPO is expected to close on 9 November. The firm’s joint venture partners HDFC Ltd and Standard Life Mauritius will be selling a 9.55% and 5.42% stake in the company, respectively. Anchor investors will be permitted to start subscribing on 6 November, while the public will have to wait till 7 November.

        The promoters of the life insurance firm are expecting to raise around Rs.7,500 crore from the IPO. The price band per share is yet to be decided. Presently, HDFC and Standard Life hold a 61.41% and 34.86% stake in HDFC Standard Life, respectively. The remaining shares are owned by PremjiInvest and employees.

        26th October 2017

      • Aegon Life Launches New Term Insurance Plan – Aegon Life iTermForever

        Insurance firm Aegon Life has launched a new term insurance plan – Aegon Life iTermForever – which will provide policyholders a risk cover for life. The plan, which combines the benefits of a term insurance plan and a whole life plan, is a non-participating, non-linked, whole of life, term insurance policy. A few key features of the plan are:

        • In case the policyholder passes away, the insurer will pay a lump sum benefit to the nominee.
        • Policyholders have the option to pay their premiums for a limited period of time, and enjoy the policy benefits for life.
        • Additional riders and tax benefits can be availed by the life assured.
        • Female policy buyers and non-smokers are offers a lower premium rate.
        • Policyholders can also increase the level of protection, as per their needs, by paying an extra premium.
        • The plan can be purchased by any individual between 18 years – 65 years of age, for a minimum Sum Assured of Rs.25 lakh.

        26th October 2017

      • Guide to ensure a speedy and smooth life insurance claim settlement

        In the unfortunate demise of the life insured, it is important to ensure that the beneficiary or nominee gets a speedy life insurance claim settlement. There are certain steps one can take to ensure a smooth settlement of a life insurance claim which include:

          • The proposer must ensure the proposal form is filled properly. Before filling the form, it is important to read the terms and conditions of the policy to avoid any after-sale shock. If there are any objection to the terms and conditions, the policy can be cancelled during the free-look period.

          • Submit the relevant documents such as ID proof, age proof, address proof, and medical reports at the time of purchasing the policy in order to avoid claim rejection on the basis of furnishing false or misrepresented details.

          • Nominees should be appointed without fail and informed about the policy documents. In the absence of a nomination, the would-be nominee or beneficiary will have to run around to obtain a succession certificate.

          • Keep the insurance premium payment regular to ensure the policy is active and doesn't lapse. Lapsed policies can be converted to paid-up policy wherein the sum insured is reduced.

          • Disclosure of any pre-existing health conditions and any other life insurance policies one may hold is important so that a claim can't be denied on the basis of mismatched information.

        25th October 2017

      • ICICI Prudential Life reports net profit of Rs.421 crore in Q2

        India's largest life insurance company by new business income in the private sector, ICICI Prudential Life Insurance reported Rs.421 crore net profit in the second quarter. Shares of ICICI Prudential Life increased to 0.19% which is Rs.390.80 on the BSE. The insurance company has announced Rs.3.40 interim dividend per equity share of Rs.10 face value for the half year which ends on 30 September 2017.

        Taking advantage of the rally in stock markets, the insurance company is more focused on Unit Linked Insurance Products (ULIP). The company also posted a 17% increase in new business annualised premium. 80% contribution to the new business premium is from ULIPs. Executive Director of the insurance company, Sandeep Batra said that there has been an improvement in new business margin by 150 bps as the company focussed on protection and savings products.

        25th October 2017

      • Kotak General Looks To Expand Its Customer Base By Way of Acquisition

        Kotak General Insurance is open to acquisitions and is looking for inorganic opportunities to expand its customer base. CEO Mahesh Balasubramanium hinted that an acquisition would depend on the returns that can be generated through the activity. The subsidiary of Kotak Mahindra Bank has been growing at a rate of 15% per annum and generating more than Rs.1 lakh crore of premium each year. The company’s prime objective has been to expand its retail insurance business in India with major focus on health and motor insurance.

        24th October 2017

      • How to get adequate life cover by choosing the right life insurance policy?

        Life insurance is important to secure the financial future of your loved ones. Yet, India is one of the Asian countries with the highest level of underinsurance. In the past, customers were dependant on third-parties like insurance agents and brokers to make insurance decisions. At present, the consumers are equipped with insurance information in order to make their own decisions. Here is a guide to help you make important financial decisions like choosing a suitable life cover for you and your loved ones:

        Purpose of buying life insurance: Most individuals buy life insurance for investment or as a tax-saving tool. Life insurance is mainly for protection. Understanding this will help you choose adequate life cover and prevent you from being underinsured.

        Assess your financial needs: Based on your current income and expenses, choose a life cover that is not only affordable but also provides adequate financial protection to your family in your absence.

        Suitable life insurance policy: Once you have chosen a suitable policy, take into account the policy inclusions, exclusions, cancellation, grace period, beneficiaries, renewability terms, etc.

        Select the right insurance company: A high Claim Settlement Ratio (CSR) of an insurance company indicates the capability of the insurer to settle a high number of claims in that particular financial year. The claim process and grievance redressal procedure of the insurer have to be easy, simple, and effective.

        Sum Assured and Policy Term: Compare various life insurance policies across top insurance providers on a third-party website and get an instant quote on your chosen policy. Determine how much sum assured or life cover you require and until what age or policy term you need coverage.

        Policy return: After purchasing a policy, if you have any objections to its terms and conditions, you have a free-look period of 15-30 days within which you can return the policy and get a refund on the premium paid.

        23rd October 2017

      • A guide to buy a term insurance plan online

        Term plan is a traditional life insurance plan that offers pure life cover or protection for a specific period of time or term to the life insured. There is no profit component involved in a term plan. Term insurance policies are affordable and hence the most popular life insurance product in India. Term insurance plans can be purchased in 2 ways:

        • Offline method: Visit a branch of the insurance company in your locality. Get in touch with an insurance agent or broker who can guide you in selecting a suitable term insurance plan. Fill out a proposal form and make premium payment at the insurer's branch. After successful verification of your proposal form and health details, the insurer will issue your policy documents.
        • Online method: Visit a third-party website to compare various term plans across the top insurance providers.
          • Enter your personal details such as age, gender, place of residence, lifestyle habits like smoking and drinking, income, and expected life cover.
          • You will be given a list of suitable plans based on the details provided by you. Compare the features and benefits of each plan and choose the one that best meets your insurance needs.
          • To purchase the term plan, you can either carry out the process on the third-party website or visit the insurer's website. Upon successful payment of insurance premium payment using net banking, debit card or credit card, the insurer will send the confirmation to your registered email ID.
          • A detailed proposal form has to be filled out by the customer and submitted along with ID proof, address proof, and medical reports. If needed, the customer has to undergo a medical test.
          • After successful verification of the proposal form and the medical reports, the insurance company will issue the policy and send the policy documents to the customer.

        23rd October 2017

      • Agriculture insurance companies to settle 2016-17 kharif and rabi season claims this month

        According to C. Parthasarathi, the Agriculture Production Commissioner, only Rs.100 crore out of Rs.154.36 crore claim amount has been given to the bank branches where the farmers who have been insured hold their savings accounts. By 20 October, all agriculture insurance companies have been asked by the state government to settle claims related to the 2016-17 Kharif and Rabi seasons. The insurance companies must furnish details of the district and village-wise crop insurance in the assembly session conducted at a later date in October.

        18th October 2017

      • 17 October is international day of Eradication of Poverty

        The year, 2017 is marked as the 25th anniversary of UN declaration of 17 October as the international 'Eradication of Poverty' day. Poverty can be eliminated by providing the right financial tools to the poor.

        Poor people live in risky situations where there is a high probability of unemployment, death of a breadwinner or property loss. To protect themselves against such unfortunate events, easy access to the right financial tools such as health and life insurance products can help them cope. Studies have shown that affordable microinsurance designed for the poor can improve their healthcare and income crisis.

        In developing countries, insurance coverage for the poor is not predominant. In India, more than 80% of the Below Poverty Line households are not covered. Fortunately, India is a major market for the fast-growing microinsurance segment at 65%. About 37 million people are covered under Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana (RSBY), a national health insurance scheme funded by the government. Mobile banking and digital payments are increasing the chances of reaching poor households. A major challenge of microinsurance is ensuring sufficient coverage and affordability.

        17th October 2017

      • Benefits Of Life Insurance For Women

        Life insurance is a commodity which offers the same benefits to men and women. Whether it is a man or a woman, either of them can apply and get life insurance coverage not only for themselves but also their loved ones. Moreover, as more and more women become socially and financially empowered, it has become even more important for them to not only insure themselves but also their loved ones against uncertainties that may strike unpredictably. Whether it is a working woman, or a housewife, women are contributing immensely to every sphere of life. At home, women juggle the challenging task of managing a household, along with raising kids. A growing number of households now have women as sole income earners or co-income earners. This makes them a very valuable part of the household, and their absence can bring about great financial turmoil. Life insurance offers a variety of valuable benefits for women. Besides providing financial security, it can also bring immense peace of mind.

        20th October 2017

      • Get Rs.2 lakh Life Cover @ Rs.330 with Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana

        Life insurance is a necessity for all of us, especially for those who are supporting dependents financially. However, many people end up skipping life insurance because of its cost. While life insurance has become quite affordable in today’s times, it still may not be affordable enough for many people. Considering this, the government of India has introduced a special life insurance scheme known as the Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana (PMJJBY).

        The unique selling point of this scheme is its affordability which lets the common man get access to the something as basic as life insurance in a simplified manner. One can avail life insurance cover worth Rs.2 lakh for a premium as low as Rs.330 per year. The main objective of launching this scheme has been to provide the benefit of life insurance coverage to the general population. The cover provided under the scheme is valid for one year and can be renewed on a yearly basis.

        This scheme can be taken from LIC and a few other private life insurance providers. Customers can also visit their bank to know more regarding enrolment for this scheme as several banks have also partnered with insurance providers to promote these schemes

        13th October 2017

      • 19.3% profit growth for ICICI Lombard General Insurance in Q2 FY18

        ICICI Lombard General Insurance has reported a 19.3% rise in net profit in the second quarter of FY18. In Q2 FY18, the profit after tax is at Rs.204.04 crore while in Q2 FY17, it was Rs.170.95 crore. After a Gross Direct Premium Income (GDPI) of Rs.3,173 crore, the insurance company has announced a dividend of Rs.0.75 per share. The GDPI increased by 16.7%, from Rs.5,565 crore in FY17 to Rs.6,494 crore in the first half of FY18. MD and CEO of ICICI Lombard, Bhargav Dasgupta said that the company is focusing on bringing down the combined solvency ratio. He also said that the loss ratios have improved in all segments except health, motor, marine, fire, and crop insurance.

        18th October 2017

      • Get Rs.2 lakh Life Cover @ Rs.330 with Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana

        Life insurance is a necessity for all of us, especially for those who are supporting dependents financially. However, many people end up skipping life insurance because of its cost. While life insurance has become quite affordable in today’s times, it still may not be affordable enough for many people. Considering this, the government of India has introduced a special life insurance scheme known as the Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana (PMJJBY).

        The unique selling point of this scheme is its affordability which lets the common man get access to the something as basic as life insurance in a simplified manner. One can avail life insurance cover worth Rs.2 lakh for a premium as low as Rs.330 per year. The main objective of launching this scheme has been to provide the benefit of life insurance coverage to the general population. The cover provided under the scheme is valid for one year and can be renewed on a yearly basis.

        This scheme can be taken from LIC and a few other private life insurance providers. Customers can also visit their bank to know more regarding enrolment for this scheme as several banks have also partnered with insurance providers to promote these schemes

        17th October 2017

      • Postal Life Insurance Now Open To Employees Of Listed Companies: Department of Posts

        Bringing good news to many, the Postal Dept. of the Telecom Ministry recently announced that the postal life insurance scheme can now be availed not only by professionals, but also employees working in listed companies as well. Union Telecom minister, Mr. Manoj Sinha said that the PLI (Postal Life Insurance) offers the highest bonus at the lowest premium, when compared to many public and private insurance providers. The scheme can now be availed by a number of professionals such as engineers, doctors, lawyers, architects, Management Consultants, bankers, charted accountants, etc., as well as by employees of companies which are listed on the BSE (Bombay Stock Exchange) and NSE (National Stock Exchange).

        Postal Life Insurance is one of the oldest life insurance scheme introduced as far back as 1884, for the benefit of Government and semi-Government employees. The Rural Postal Life Insurance (RPLI) was launched in 1995 with the objective of providing insurance cover to the weaker sections and women living in rural areas. The USP of the PLI and RPLI is high bonus at low premiums.

        13th October 2017

      • Life Insurers Record 25% Growth In New Business Premium In Sep

        According to reports, the life insurance industry has collected new business premium worth Rs.20,892.7 crore in September 2017, achieving a year-on-year growth of 24.6%. In September 2016, all 24 life insurance providers collectively clocked new premium of Rs.16,767.41 crore, as per data released by Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI).

        The state-owned Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) has recorded a growth of 37.6 percent. The insurer collected total premium worth Rs.11,117.48 crore in September 2016. As for the remaining 23 privately led insurance providers, SBI Life recorded a drop in its new business premium which stood at Rs.817.81 crore in September 2017 as compared to Rs.1,279.05 crore from last year. ICICI Prudential Life's saw a 14.9% growth in new business premium which stood at Rs.745.73 crore; HDFC Life saw growth of 24.7% and collected premium worth Rs.1,119.04 crore; Max Life rose by 24% and recorded premium collection worth Rs.396.63 crore in Sept 2017; DHFL Pramerica Life recorded the second highest growth of 64.8%, collecting new premium worth Rs.118.38 crore, and Bajaj Allianz recorded the highest growth, of 90% in new business premium, which stood at Rs.841.19 crore.

        Some insurers, however, registered a decline in new business premium. Among those were Birla Sun Life which reported a 21% decline in new premium, collecting Rs.359.45 crore, and Sahara Life's registering the biggest drop of 95% and stood at Rs.17 lakh as against Rs..14 crore in September 2016.

        12th October 2017

      • LIC Ahead Of Private Players In New Premium Collections & Growth At End Of Q2

        As per data released by the Life Insurance Council, state-owned insurer, Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) has recorded 23.68% growth, year-on-year, in new business premium collection, for the quarter of April to September 2017. This is phenomenal considering the growth of 14.42% which has been recorded by private sector insurers.

        According to data collected, life insurers collected new biz premium worth Rs.92,065.01 crore in the first 6 months of FY18, recording growth of 21.14%. LIC single-handedly managed premium collection worth Rs.68,224.29 crore, whereas private sector players managed to collect Rs.23,840.72 crore during this period.

        Under general insurance, total premiums collected during April to September were Rs.72,564.42 crore, amounting to 19.46% growth on a year-on-year basis. Out of this, private sector insurers registered 25.41% growth, whereas the public sector players saw a lower growth of only 14.42%.

        In terms of market share, the private sector general insurers held 48.17% whereas the public sector players held a majority share of 51.83 percent share. (including specialised insurers). Among other insurance segments, standalone health insurers recorded the maximum growth of 42.56% in the 2 quarters of the financial year, as compared to last year.

        11th October 2017

      • Reliance Nippon Life IPO Gets Approval From SEBI

        Reliance Nippon Life Asset Management Ltd. recently received the green signal from the Securities & Exchange Board of India (SEBI) to launch its approximately Rs.2,000 crore initial public offer. Reliance Nippon Life, the Reliance Group firm led by Anil Ambani, will have the distinction to be the first ever asset management company in India to launch an IPO. UTI Mutual Fund, a rival of Reliance Nippon, has also been planning an IPO for some time.

        According to the latest update on the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) website, the regulatory board has given its observations regarding the proposed Reliance Nippon IPO. According to the draft papers filed with SEBI, the company’s public issue will consist of 2.45 crore shares under fresh issue, in addition to 1.12 crore shares being sold by Reliance Capital, and 2.55 crore shares being sold by its partner, Nippon Life Insurance Company.

        The size of the proposed IPO is expected to be approximately 10% of the post issue paid-up capital of the company. Reliance Nippon is a joint venture between Reliance Capital of India and Nippon Life, Japan, and is the asset manager to Reliance Mutual Fund. For the initial share sale, the global co-ordinators and book running lead managers are JM Financial, CLSA, Nomura and Axis Capital. Reliance General Insurance has recently filed its draft papers with SEBI for the upcoming IPO. Other companies of the Anil Ambani Group which are already listed on the stock exchanges are Reliance Power and Reliance Communications.

        11th October 2017

      • IndiaFirst Life Looks To Break Even By 2019-2020

        IndiaFirst Life Insurance Company (IFLI), is all set to complete 8 years in the industry in November 2017, and according to a company official, the insurer also expects to break even by the year 2019-2020. RM Vishakha, Managing Director & CEO, IFLI said that the company has been accumulating modest profits in the last three years with a net profit of Rs.35 crore recorded in the last fiscal (2016-17). In the same light, the insurer is hopeful of earning a profit of Rs.50 crore this year as well.

        Currently ranked at the 12th spot, IndiaFirst is also aiming to become a part of the top 10 league of the insurance industry in terms of retail new business premium. Ms. Vishakha said that IndiaFirst is hopeful to achieve inorganic growth. The company, she said, is open to acquisitions which are the right fit.

        IndiaFirst is a joint venture between Andhra Bank, Bank of Baroda, and the UK-based financial and investment company Legal & General.

        10th October 2017

      • Tata AIG, ICICI Lombard, HDFC Ergo Likely To Witness Surge in Demand For D&O policies

        Following the suggestion by the Kotak Panel that Directors' and Officers' Liability (D&O) cover be made compulsory for independent directors, general insurance companies like HDFC Ergo, ICICI Lombard, and Tata AIG, and HDFC Ergo are expecting to see an upsurge in the demand for their Directors' and Officers' Liability (D&O) policies. Last week, the panel put in the suggestion that it must be compulsory for top 500 companies (as per market capitalisation) to get D&O insurance for its independent directors.

        this move has been suggested in order to provide security to directors of companies who can be held personally liable for decisions made not only by them but also by their fellow directors. As a result, they could face financial loss due to litigation from shareholders, creditors, competitors, suppliers, and regulatory bodies. This is where a Directors’ & Officers’ Liability policy will help in providing protection. These policies have 2 parts – one part covers breach of duty, neglect, misstatements or errors by the company or its employees, and the other part covers the same if done by directors.

        Mr. Sanjay Datta, Head of underwriting, ICICI Lombard General Insurance said that they expect greater demand for D&O policies following the recommendation forwarded by the Kotak panel to provide mandatory cover to independent directors. Citing situations of board fights such as Satyam, Mr. Dutta said that such events have resulted in an upsurge of enquiries for D&O cover.

        10th October 2017

      • SBI Life Planning To Open Branch in Bahrain By End of 2017

        In a move that will have SBI making its debut in the Middle East insurance market, SBI Life Insurance is looking to open their first branch in Bahrain by the end of 2017. According to company officials, the insurer has received the required regulatory approvals from the Central Bank of Bahrain and IRDAI (Insurance Regulatory & Development Authority of India) for opening the branch by December 2017.

        Initially, SBI Life's market is going to be limited only to that within Bahrain. However, the company plans to leverage its one-branch presence in the country to not only service the products it offers but also establish tie-ups with local banks with time. An official involved with the opening of the branch said that initially, SBI will be making use of the bancassurance channel. They are also looking towards establishing tie-ups with banks later on.

        In their soon-to-be-opened branch, SBI Life plans to offer traditional, unit-linked and term insurance products. The major target group for this branch will be NRIs living in Bahrain, but the branch will also serve local residents as well.

        SBI Life was established as a joint venture between India’s largest lender, State Bank of India and BNP Paribas Cardif, a French financial services company. At present, the only other Indian insurance company which has a presence in the Gulf is the government-run LIC (Life Insurance Corporation) which has headquarters in Bahrain. The international branch of LIC is known as LIC International which operates in GCC (Gulf Corporation Council) countries of Oman, Bahrain, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, and Saudi Arabia.

        9th October 2017

      • Policyholder Claims Cannot Be Denied Due To Delay In Filing: Supreme Court

        In a ruling that will bring immense relief to millions of policyholders around the country, the Supreme Court has ruled that insurers cannot deny a policyholder’s insurance claim if the delay in filing the claim has been satisfactorily explained. This ruling comes after a recent case presented before the court wherein a policyholder was denied their claim for a stolen vehicle. The bench of justice comprising of Mr. R.K. Agrawal and Mr. S. Abdul Nazeer said that the if insurers reject claims based solely on technical grounds by default, the same will only be a precedent in policyholders and customers, in general, losing confidence in the insurance industry as a whole.

        Speaking on the ruling, the Supreme Court has said that if the policyholder can satisfactorily explain the cause of delay in claim filing, the claim cannot be rejected or denied by the insurer, solely on the ground of delay. The court also added that it would be unreasonable and unfair on the part of the insurer to reject a genuine claim which has already been verified by the investigator.

        Surrounding this ruling, the apex court has also observed that in the case where a person has lost their vehicle, filing an insurance claim to get compensation may not be the first that they would do. Often the person will make all efforts to try and locate their vehicle. Considering this, the court said that while it is important that the policyholder informs the insurer immediately about the loss, any unavoidable circumstance which leads to delay in informing the insurer about the claim would not be a valid reason for rejection of claim on the insurer’s part. Decision to reject or deny a claim must be based on valid reasons.

        8th October 2017

      • Opt for term plans that offer protection as well as maturity benefits

        Term plan is the purest form of life insurance wherein the insured member is provided life cover for a fixed period of time. Customers prefer term plans as they offer a high life cover at an affordable premium. The premium amount for a term is fixed for the policy term. Term plans offer financial protection to the family or beneficiaries of the life insured in the unfortunate event of the demise of the insured member during the policy term.

        However, these traditional term plans offer zero return upon reaching maturity and the survival of the life insured. Therefore, customers think twice before opting for a term plan with no return on survival of the term. Hence, life insurance companies have designed a term plan that returns the total premium amount paid by the policyholder upon the survival of the term. This types of plan is called the Term Return of Premium (ROP) plan. Before deciding between a traditional term plan and a ROP plan, take the following factors into consideration:

        • Annual income of the individual.

        • Number of dependants, size of the family, single or married.

        • Personal loan, home loan, and other financial liabilities.

        Life insurance needs vary from customer to customer. If you are looking for a value-for-money product, then go for a ROP plan. Most Return of Premium plans have rider and conversion options. The premium amount of a ROP plan will be higher than a traditional term plan. What's more? Returned premium is not taxable. Therefore, you can avail tax benefits on refunded premium upon maturity as well on premium paid for the term plan. One example of a ROP plan is Click 2 Protect 3D Plus offered by HDFC Life with 9 different options. ROP plans can be hard to purchase after reaching 50 years of age. Therefore, opt for a Term Return of Premium Plan at a young age.

        6th October 2017

      • IRDAI to issue a fresh order in a case involving Reliance Life Insurance

        The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) had previously imposed Rs.85 lakh penalty on Reliance Life Insurance for violating various regulations which also includes the outsourcing norms. The insurer has been asked by the regulator to assess corporate business policy, and outline the standards of ethical behavior and business conduct. Reliance Life Insurance filed an appeal against the order issued by the IRDAI on 6 August 2015 order with the Securities Appellate Tribunal (SAT). On 3 October, SAT ruled that the IRDAI and Reliance Life Insurance will quash the impugned order of 6 August by consent. So, the IRDAI will issue a fresh order on merit after the insurer is given a chance at hearing.

        6th October 2017

      • SBI Life Shares Close 1.1% Higher At Rs.708

        Following the Rs.8,400 crore initial public offer (IPO) which was subscribed 3.58 times in the last week, the shares of SBI Life Insurance Co. Ltd. debuted almost 5% higher on the bourses this Tuesday. At the time of closing, the insurer’s shares closed 1.14% higher at Rs.708 per share on the Bombay Stock Exchange. At the time of opening, the shares had opened at 4.75% higher on the stock market valued at Rs.733.30 per share, as compared to the issue price of Rs.700. The shares were offered in the price band of Rs.685 to Rs.700 per share in the IPO.

        During the day, the insurer’s shares went up to as high as Rs.738 and fell as low as Rs.702.25. As per experts, the issue has been priced fairly and they recommend investors to invest in the IPO with a long-term goal.

        The IPO launched by SBI Life Insurance has been the largest that the market has seen since that launched by Coal India Ltd. Which was issued in October 2010. Going by issue size, SBI’s IPO is also the 4th largest.

        SBI Life Insurance was founded in the year 2001 as a joint venture between State Bank of India and BNP Paribas Cardif SA. Collectively, both partners sold 12% stake in the venture wherein SBI sold 8% and BNP parted with 4% stake respectively.

        5th October 2017

      • Apollo Munich & HDFC Life Launch Life-cum-Health Cover Plan

        Two of India’s leading insurance providers, HDFC Life Insurance and Apollo Munich Health recently joined hands to announce the launch of a dual cover plan known as the ‘Click2Protect Health Plan’. This unique plan has been designed to provide the benefits of 2 popular plans offered by each of the insurer - ‘Click2Protect 3D Plus (term) Protection Plan’ by HDFC Life and the ‘Optima Restore Health Indemnity Plan’ offered by Apollo Munich - thereby offering life insurance and health insurance cover.

        Throwing light on the newly launched product, Mr. Subrat Mohanty, Senior EVP, HDFC Life said that customers can avail the benefits of both these products, simply by filling up a single proposal form, medical reports, and premium, thereby adding to their convenience. He also said that customers get a 5% discount when they buy both these products together, thereby also saving money.

        According to a joint statement released by Apollo Munich and HDFC Life on the product, this single plan will carry a number of features such as waiver of future premiums in the event of an accidental total permanent disability or if the policyholder is diagnosed with a critical illness. The policy will also offer special premium rates for women and non-tobacco users.

        The hospitalization benefit which is a part of this plan, will cover in-patient treatment, and pre-and post-hospitalisation expenses. The plan also includes a Restore benefit, wherein cover amount will be restored to cover another illness or a family member, and Multiplier benefit, wherein the basic sum assured will increase by 50% for the first claim-free year, and by 2x for a second consequent claim-free year. The plan also includes a critical advantage rider which covers 8 critical illnesses like cancer and a number of heart ailments, along with providing overseas cashless treatment facility for these illnesses.

        5th October 2017

      • Risks of being underinsured

        In India, most people lack the proactive mindset to envision a safe existence and work toward it, which is why, although the insurance sector has seen an upward growth in the last 10 years, the penetration of life insurance is only around 3%. Those who have a life insurance policy to their name are sadly underinsured owing to limited knowledge and awareness of how life insurance works and how much life cover is needed.

        What does underinsured mean?

        Underinsured means the life insurance policy that one has chosen does not provide adequate cover. Having a life cover less than Rs.1 crore is considered insufficient coverage. One of the major reasons for overlooking the disadvantages of being underinsured is the widespread ignorance of the people who are ill-prepared for unforeseen, unfortunate events such as the demise or disability of the breadwinner of the family.

        Life insurance is purchased mainly as a tax-saving benefit rather than a financial tool that will safeguard the life insured against unexpected expenses. Many consider a life insurance policy with a small premium as the best policy for them. This is not true as a small premium means a basic life cover that will fail to provide sufficient coverage to the insured member. Insurance agents work on commission and therefore, push expensive life insurance plans that offer insufficient life cover at their potential customers.

        What to do if you are underinsured?

        First and foremost, assess one's insurance needs. If an individual already has a non-term life insurance plan, then he or she must purchase a term plan to get a more comprehensive insurance cover. Calculate the required sum assured and insurance premium amount based on the income, liabilities, and expenses of the individual. For instance, opt for a plan that offers insurance coverage worth 15 times the monthly income of the individual.

        5th October 2017

      • ICICI Prudential Life Insurance up 7% on value buying

        ICICI Prudential Life Insurance Company’s stocks gained 7% and climbed to Rs.415, which is an extension to Friday’s 2% gain on value buying on the National Stock Exchange (NSE).

        The trading volumes for the company’s shares increased more than double. A total of 4.2 million shares were exchanged till 1:05 PM, in comparison to 1.7 million shares which were traded on a day-to-day basis in the last 2 weeks on the NSE and BSE.

        Analysts at IIFL, the leading brokerage firm said that among the crop of private segment life insurance providers, ICICI Prudential Life Insurance is enjoys a leading position in the stock market, thanks to its cost competitiveness and robust distribution architecture. This has put the company in a good position to capture opportunities for growth which arise from buoyant equity markets, considering the company’s strong positioning as a seller of unit-linked products (ULIPs).

        4th October 2017

      • Kotak Life Insurance Aiming At 25-30% Growth In Premium

        According to reports, Kotak Mahindra Old Mutual Life Insurance is expecting a 25-30% rise in its income from premiums this year, as has been mentioned by Mr. Sudhakar Shanbhag, Chief Investment Officer, Kotak Mahindra Life Insurance. He said that the company’s year to date growth has been 37%. The full year’s growth is expected to be between 25% to 30%.

        In the last fiscal i.e. FY17, the insurer registered a 29% premium growth, which was much ahead of the industry’s growth which stood at 21%. The company recorded business premium income if Rs.2,850 crore and renewal premiums stood at Rs.2,290 crore. The insurer recorded a profit of Rs.324 crore on the total premium income of Rs.5,140 crore in FY17.

        Mr. Sudhakar said that nearly 35% of the total regular premium has been contributed by unit-linked insurance policies (ULIPs) and the remaining brought in from traditional insurance products. Under the retail section, nearly 20% to 25% of the regular premium has been brought in by single-premium polices. Looking from a bigger perspective, nearly 50% of the total premium has been contributed by group insurance business, said Mr. Sudhakar.

        3rd October 2017

      • 3 kinds of life insurance policies

        For most of us, life insurance can be quite a tricky matter to grasp. With so many terms, conditions, exclusions, and other infinite details, it can be quite a challenge to not only understand all of it but also decide which one makes more sense over the other. When it comes to purchasing insurance, many of us rely on the services of agents and brokers to not only break down the policy in simpler terms for us but also trust them with recommending a policy which is best suited for our needs. But, agents, in their hurry to earn their commission and also clinch the sale, will often end up telling us only about some of the terms and benefits of the policy, often leaving out the most important bits. This results in the customer purchasing a policy which is not suited for their requirements which only translates into loss of money and time. When it comes to life insurance, there is one thing which all customers must know before starting their search. All the life insurance policies offered by insurers fall under 3 basic types - traditional plans, unit-linked plans, and term plans. In this article, we will strive to tell you about each plan in brief. Furthermore, you can also find out what you must be cautious about when you consider a life insurance plan that falls under any of these 3 categories of life insurance plans.

        3rd October 2017

      • SBI Life Insurance Shares To Be Allotted Today

        SBI Life Insurance’s initial public offering, which was launched to raise Rs.8,400 crore ($1.3 billion) will be allotted today. The issue saw nearly 3.58x oversubscription on the last day of the bidding, which was September 22. SBI Life Insurance Co. Ltd., a subsidiary of State Bank of India, has recently launched their first ever IPO,, which was also one of the biggest IPOs to be launched in the past 7 years.

        SBI Life Insurance becomes the second life insurance company, after ICICI Prudential Life Insurance Co. Ltd, to launch their IPO and be listed on the stock market exchange. Nearly 29.5 million bids were made on the SBI Life IPO shares, as per the data received from the stock exchanges.

        Anchor investors such as GIC from Singapore, and Canada Pension Plan Investment Board have already given their commitment to subscribe to shares worth Rs.22.26 billion. The two primary shareholders of SBI Life Insurance, namely State Bank of India, and BNP Paribas Cardif, have sold 8% and 4% of their stake in the company respectively via the IPO.

        Following SBI Life are some other companies who are also planning to launch their IPO in the coming few months. Insurance giants like HDFC Standard Life Insurance Co. Ltd, state-run insurers like New India Assurance Ltd. and GIC Re have also recently filed for IPOs. All combined, they are expected to raise over $4 billion. According to leading market experts, given the booming IPO situation this year, IPO sales could very well fetch over $8.5 billion. a

        27th September 2017

      • How Life Insurance Can Help You Fulfil Your Financial Goals

        Most of us live under the impression that life insurance is an instrument which provides financial protection in case of a personal calamity. However, what most people aren’t aware of is, that life insurance can also serve as an efficient tool for financial planning and helping one meet their financial goals such as your buying a house or car, planning for your child’s education, wedding, saving up for your retirement, etc. Now, there are various types of insurance policies that are available in the market which are designed to cater to different insurance and investment needs.

        Here is a brief about which policies are suitable to be taken at different stages of your life.

        When You Are Getting Married

        If you are planning to get married, then you should make sure that a term insurance plan is a part of your financial portfolio. When taking a term plan, you should remember that the earlier you get the plan, the lower your premiums will be. At a younger age, your will be in better health and will have lower risk as compared to when you are older. Normally, the sum assured under a term plan is calculated based on your present salary and is typically an amount which is 15 to 20 times that of your annual income.

        When You Have A Child

        Term insurance plans are also known as pure term plans as they provide cover against the ultimate risk of death. If you have become a parent and are the only income earner in your family, then a term plan is again a must-have for you which can help protect your dependents from any unforeseen financial scarcity which may arise following your untimely demise. The other important reason why a term plan is important is, because it saves your depends from the burden of having to budget their needs in order to repay any liabilities such as loans, debts, credit card dues, etc. also useful to have is a term plan with riders which can help to further enhance the scope of coverage provided under the base plan. If you are planning to create a corpus for your child’s education, then a Unit Linked Insurance Plan or ULIP is your best option. ULIPs not only allow you to get life insurance coverage but also provide you with a chance to invest your capital in funds of your choosing so you can fulfil your financial goals.

        When It’s Time To Retire

        Retirement is a well-deserved period of every working person’s life when they do not have to worry about work any more. However, the period leading up to retirement can be anxiety-ridden for some people who have not started planning for their retirement. The key to achieving financial independence after retirement is to start saving from early on. Planning in advance is the most important thing you can do to ensure that you create a sufficient and comfortable retirement corpus for yourself and your dependent. For this purpose, a long-term ULIP plan is one of the best options. These plan are similar to mutual funds in working. The policyholder will pay a certain amount on a monthly basis which will get accumulated and can be utilized once the term of the plan comes to an end. The advantage of this plan is that it provides you with equity returns which will be higher as the years pass.

        25th September 2017

      • Day 2 of SBI Life Insurance IPO Sees 58% Subscription

        SBI Life Insurance’s IPO (initial public offer), which was launched on Sept 20, is reported to have been subscribed 58% on Thursday, which was the second day of the sale. As per the data received from stock exchanges, till 5pm, the portions of the shares reserved for institutional investors and retail investors had been subscribed 1.58 times and 0.37 times, respectively. The chunk of shares that had been reserved for high net worth investors had only been subscribed at 8%. SBI Life’s IPO will close on 22 September 2017.

        For the IPO, SBI Life has priced the shares in the band of Rs.685 to Rs.700 per share. At the upper end of the price band, the initial share sale will put the firm’s value at Rs.70,000 crore. The IPO is a pure offer for sale wherein SBI is offering 8% stake and it’s partner BNP Paribas is offering 4% of its stake. After the IPO, SBI and BNP Paribas will end up with 62.1% and 22%. SBI Life Insurance was founded in 2001 and is a joint venture between India’s largest lender, State Bank of India and BNP Paribas Cardif.

        22nd September 2017

      • Max Life and Birla Sun Life Have Initiated Merger Talks

        Two of India’s premier insurance providers, Max Financial Services, led by Analjit Singh and the Aditya Birla Group are in talks to explore the possibility of a merger of their life insurance businesses with the aim to create one of India’s largest and finest private life insurance company.

        Simultaneously, Mr. Analjit Singh is also reported to be in negotiation with UK-based Northern Trust which manages a trillion dollar of assets and PE firm Apax Partners to sell his promoter stake of 30% in Max Financial Services.

        Negotiations between the two companies are still in their nascent stage. However, there is no guarantee of a transaction to materialize from these negotiations. The key factor behind the talks being held for this merger is the fact that Birla Sun Life lacks large bank partners like Max Life has (Axis Bank, Yes Bank). Birla Sun Life has managed to tie up 6 banks last year, but these are mostly smaller banks. An official privy to the ongoing talks mentioned that the Max Life – Birla Life discussion are being held only at a shareholder level at present to figure out the correct structure. The discussions have not reached a board level yet. He said, that ‘increased scale can potentially yield to benefits of cost synergies as well as multi channel distribution, through agencies, brokers, direct marketing and bancassurance.’

        21st September 2017

      • SBI Life Insurance IPO Launches Today, Experts Suggest Getting Long-term Subscriptions

        SBI Life Insurance, a subsidiary of India’s largest lender, State Bank of India, is all set to launch its Rs.8,400 crore initial public offering (IPO) in the stock market today. According the experts, the issue has been fairly priced and it is best for investors to invest in the fund with a long-term perspective. SBI Life Insurance’s IPO is likely to be the biggest IPO to hit the market since the October 2010 public issue taken out by Coal India Ltd. In terms of issue size, SBI’s IPO is going to be the fourth largest.

        SBI’s has priced its IPO shares in the band of Rs.685-Rs.700 per share. In this IPO, SBI Life Insurance and it’s joint venture partner, BNP Paribas Cardif SA are going to sell 8% and 4% of their stakes in the life insurance firm respectively. While SBI is expected to collect nearly Rs.5,600 crore after selling it’s stake, BNP Paribas Cardif is expected to earn around Rs.2,800 crore.

        SBI Life insurance is currently ranked as the country’s biggest private life insurance provider in terms of new business premium (NBP) generated in each financial year since 2010. The insurer has also gained NBP market share in the private insurance industry which has gone up from 15.87% in FY15 to 20.04% in FY17. Between these two fiscal years, SBI Life recorded a CAGR (compounded annual growth rate) in their NBP of 35.45%, which is the recorded highest in terms of total premium among the top 5 private life insurers in the industry.

        Angel Broking analyst, Mr.Jaikishan J. Parmar said that SBI’s premium valuation is justified given its higher incremental market share gain. This is the reason why investors are being advised to subscribe to the issue with a long-term perspective. Experts are advising against investing in the issue with the objective to make listing gains.

        20th September 2017

      • Prataap Snacks & SBI Life Insurance All Set To Launch IPO

        2017 seems to be the year of IPOs. Following the IPOs of ICICI Lombard General Insurance (September 15-19), Capacit'e Infraprojects (September 13 to 15), and Matrimony.com (September 11 to September 13), SBI Life Insurance is the next company which is all set to launch their IPO on 20 Sept 2017 and expects to raise up to Rs.8,400 crore. Their issue closes on September 22. Opening on the same date is the IPO for Indore-based snacks maker Prataap Snacks, which plans to raise up to Rs.482 crore.

        Prataap Snacks is an Indore-based snacks manufacturer which is expected to raise approximately Rs.482-crore via their initial public offer (IPO) which will open for subscription on 22 Sept 2017 and close on 26 Sept 2017. The price of equity shares being offered during the issue will be within the price band of Rs.930 – Rs.938 per equity share. Out of the total Rs.482 crore issue, Rs.200 crore will be via fresh equity issue and the remaining will be from offer for sale. Like SBI Life Insurance, eligible employees of Prataap Snacks will also be offered a discount of Rs.90 per share on the issue. Prataap Snacks manufactures products under the ‘Yellow Diamond’ brand, and aims to utilize the IPO proceeds to expand and increase its chip and namkeen manufacturing capacity by 50%. It also plans to use the funds for furthering marketing and brand building activities and also retire the debts.

        SBI Life Insurance is a subsidiary of the State Bank of India, the nation’s most prominent lender, and will be raising approximately up to Rs.8,400 crore. Their initial share sale offer will open on 20 Sept 2017 and close on 22 Sept 2017. The price per equity share will be within the band of Rs.685 - Rs.700. Eligible employees looking to purchase the shares will be offered a discount of Rs.68 per share on the offer price of each share. SBI Life’s IPO is going to be listed on the BSE (Bombay Stock Exchange) and NSE (National Stock Exchange).

        19th September 2017

      • Insurance Industry Growth Driven By Private Life Insurers In August

        The life insurance industry continues to display remarkable growth and the situation looked quite promising as of August 2017. Last month, private life insurance companies registered a 29% year-on-year growth on their annual premium equivalent (APE). Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) registered Ape growth of 9.3% year-on-year at Rs.2,007.9 crore in August, which is lower than that of many other private insurance players. Senior industry experts are of the view that with a rise in equity markets, unit-linked insurance products are witnessing a far stronger growth at a faster pace as compared to traditional products.

        In its insurance report, Edelweiss said that the rise in financial savings and higher inflows following demonetisation have helped the industry register impressive growth. “Experts further anticipate proclivity for financial savings to continue and industry growth momentum to sustain,” it also said. Insurance companies such as Bajaj Allianz, IndiaFirst Life Insurance, SBI Life Insurance, and Kotak Life Insurance continue to record positive APE growth. As per the IRDAI (Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India) data, private insurance companies witnesses a 18.34% year-on-year growth in new premium which stood at Rs.18,251.98 crore in the current financial year, as against Rs.15,423.06 crore which was recorded in the corresponding period of last year. As per IRDAI data, for the month of August, the insurance industry recorded new year premium up to Rs.17,513.44 crore as compared to Rs.14,282.45 crore which was recorded in August of the last financial year.

        Individual APE of Life Insurance Industry (In Crore)

        Insurance Company Aug 2017 Year-On-Year Growth Percentage
        Bajaj Allianz 89.5 30.6%
        Birla Sun Life 63.1 24.8%
        ICICI Prudential 601 14%
        Kotak Mahindra Old Mutual 100.5 40.7%
        SBI Life 664.6 50.7%
        HDFC Standard Life 331.4 24.5%
        Max Life 214.7 23.2%
        Life Insurance Corp. 2007.9 9.3%

        18th September 2017

      • SBI Life Insurance & Prataap Snacks To Launch IPOs this week

        The year 2017 is undoubtedly a good one for the Indian IPO market as various companies are gearing up to launch their IPO. In September, India will see the launch of IPO’s by SBI Life Insurance and Prataap Snacks. Their initial share sale offers are expected to raise about Rs.8,882 crore.

        SBI Life Insurance is a subsidiary of the State Bank of India, the nation’s most prominent lender, and will be raising approximately up to Rs.8,400 crore. Their initial share sale offer will open on 20 Sept 2017 and close on 22 Sept 2017. The price per equity share will be within the band of Rs.685 - Rs.700. Eligible employees looking to purchase the shares will be offered a discount of Rs.68 per share on the offer price of each share. SBI Life’s IPO is going to be listed on the BSE (Bombay Stock Exchange) and NSE (National Stock Exchange).

        Prataap Snacks is an Indore-based snacks manufacturer which is expected to raise approximately Rs.482-crore via their initial public offer (IPO) which will open for subscription on 22 Sept 2017 and close on 26 Sept 2017. The price of equity shares being offered during the issue will be within the price band of Rs.930 – Rs.938 per equity share. Out of the total Rs.482 crore issue, Rs.200 crore will be via fresh equity issue and the remaining will be from offer for sale. Like SBI Life Insurance, eligible employees of Prataap Snacks will also be offered a discount of Rs.90 per share on the issue. Prataap Snacks manufactures products under the ‘Yellow Diamond’ brand, and aims to utilize the IPO proceeds to expand and increase its chip and namkeen manufacturing capacity by 50%. It also plans to use the funds for furthering marketing and brand building activities and also retire the debts.

        18th September 2017

      • SBI Life Insurance Co. Ltd growth in FY18 comes at a good time for its IPO

        SBI Life Insurance Co. Ltd has seen phenomenal growth in FY2017. The growth has continued in the first quarter of the current fiscal year which is good for the Initial Public Offering (IPO). BNP Paribas Cardif and State Bank of India, the promoters of SBI Life Insurance Co. Ltd aim to get Rs.2,400 crore and Rs.5,600 crore from the IPO, respectively. The price of the IPO is set at Rs.685 to Rs.700 apiece. SBI Life Insurance is valued at Rs.70,000 crore at this price band. The insurance company's business premium has grown 35% between FY2015 and FY2017. The company's assets under management has increased 17.1% among its competitors. Bancassurance contributed 60% of SBI Life's new business premium for the June quarter and rest was contributed through agency.

        15th September 2017

      • Max Life Insurance looking for business opportunities with insurance companies

        Rajesh Sud, the MD and Executive Vice Chairman of Max Life Insurance said that after the merger with HDFC Standard Life didn't go through, Max Life is looking for business opportunities with public and private sector banks interested or involved in the life insurance business. The merger between HDFC Standard Life and Max Life Insurance didn't go through as the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) didn't approve the merging of an insurance business with a non-insurance business. Sud spoke at the SHRM India Annual Conference and Exposition 2017 event and said that in order to keep up to date with the changes and win in a fast-changing environment, character, action, and empathy are the key for organisations.

        15th September 2017

      • Is a term plan a good tax saving scheme?

        Term plans are pure life insurance plans that offer maximum life cover for an affordable premium. Before choosing a life insurance plan, it is advisable to consider your financial objectives and insurance needs. Life insurance serves not only as an investment plan but also a tax planning tool. An assessee is eligible for tax deduction for insurance premiums paid towards a term plan under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act, 1961.

        Eligibility for tax saving scheme

        Hindu Undivided Families (HUF) and individuals which includes spouse and children, are eligible to avail tax benefits for premium paid towards a term plan under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act, 1961. Term plan serve as a tax planning tool but it is imperative to know the terms and conditions under which the tax benefits are applicable.

        Tax deductions

        The total tax deduction under Section 80C is limited to Rs.1.5 lakh. Tax benefits for term plans are limited to 20% of the sum assured if the premium exceeds 20% of the sum assured during the financial year. For policies issued after April 1st, 2012, tax deductions can be claimed on the premium amount if it is not more than 10% of the sum assured.

        In the case of individuals with specified ailments or severe disability, tax benefit is available if the premium is not more than 10% of the sum assured. Individuals may be eligible for tax deductions on maturity proceeds under Section 10(10D) of the Income Tax Act, 1961. Bonus received under a policy term is not taxable. Death benefits paid as a lump sum amount to the nominee in the case of the demise of the life insured during the policy term is tax-free.

        14th September 2017

      • Why is life insurance important?

        Life insurance helps secure your family's financial future in the case of unfortunate demise of the life insured. The death benefit paid to the beneficiary can be used to pay off loans, education fees, wedding expenses, etc. Life Insurance can serve as an investment as well as a tax planning tool. Before choosing a life insurance plan, it is important to do your research and assess your insurance needs.

        Types of life insurance plans

        From term plans and endowment policies to ULIPs and money back plans, there are different types of life insurance products available in the market to meet the varying needs of the customers.

        • Term plans: This is the most traditional form of life insurance policy that is not only cheap but also offers maximum cover. Term plans are for a fixed period of time such as 10, 20, and 30 years.
        • Endowment plan: An endowment policy much like a term plan offers insurance cover to the policyholder for the entire policy term. It also pays a lump sum amount upon maturity. Endowment policies can be purchased as regular policies or Unit Linked Insurance Plans (ULIPs).
        • Unit Linked Insurance Plans: With ULIPs, you can build wealth in addition to offering the security of life cover. Part of the premium payment is invested in funds while the rest is directed towards life cover.

        How to assess your life insurance needs?

        Determining your insurance requirements can help you choose a suitable life insurance cover to secure the financial future of your family. Take your income, debt, future commitments, and family members into consideration. To select the right life insurance policy, visit a third-party comparison website like BankBazaar.com, compare various policies across the top life insurers, and get an instant quote on your chosen policy.

        14th September 2017

      • IPO of SBI Life Insurance to Start on September 20

        A subsidiary of India’s biggest lender SBI, SBI Life Insurance will enter the capital market on the 20th of September in an effort to raise almost Rs.8400 crore. The first share sale offer is set to open on the 20th of September and close on the 22nd of the same month, according to SBI. 2017 marks the second listing of a life insurance company following ICICI Prudential Life Insurance which went public in 2016. Sources have revealed that SBI Life Insurance’s price range for the IPO will be between Rs.685 and Rs.700, and that the company will likely raise around Rs.8400 crore. The public issue of SBI Life involves its promoters who are offloading almost 12 crore shares whose face value if Rs.10 per share. SBI is expected to dilute around eight crore shares while four crore shares will be offloaded by BNP Paribas Cardif SA. SBI Life Insurance is a joint venture between the State Bank of India and BNP Paribas Cardif which is an insurance holding company of France.

        13th September 2017

      • Important Things to Know About Life Insurance

        Life insurance is a great product to invest in as it offers peace of mind and helps you rest assured that your family will be financially able even in case something unfortunate were to happen to you. Life insurance is also a great option for saving for your retirement and old age, making it a crucial financial asset to possess.

        Who Needs It?

        Life insurance is a great option for anyone who has financial dependents, like a spouse who does not earn regular income, ageing parents, or young children. Life insurance provides a substantial amount of savings which can be used to cover your family in case you are no longer able to provide for them.

        How Much Insurance Do You Need?

        It is essential to seek professional help when determining the amount of cover you will require when taking out a life insurance policy. The most important factor to consider would be how much cover your family would require in case of your absence. You will also have to consider the period of time for which they will require financial support in case of your absence. Keep young children who will require financial support for their education as well as higher education in mind. You will also have to keep in mind any debts you may have and how much cover would be required to cover the same in your absence.

        How Much Will It Cost Me?

        Life insurance policies will cost you depending on a variety of factors, like your age, whether or not you have existing health problems, and the period for which you will require the financial cover. The payments towards life insurance policies are usually made on a periodic basis in the form of premiums. However, there are some policies that can be purchased with the payment of a single lump-sum amount.

        13th September 2017

      • SBI Life Insurance gets approval from SEBI for Rs.8,400 crore IPO

        SBI Life Insurance received approval from the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) for an Initial Public Offering (IPO) of up to Rs.8,400 crore from September 20th to 22nd of this year. SBI Life’s IPO will be 12% of its equity capital or 120 million secondary shares. State Bank of India owns 70.1% of SBI Life Insurance while BNP Paribas Cardif holds 26% stake. The bank will sell 80 million shares while BNP Paribas Cardif will sell 40 million shares.

        Temasek Holdings and KKR Asian Fund are the other major shareholders who own 1.95% stake through their subsidiaries. The launch date is subject to the approval of the Registrar of Companies. Axis, Citigroup, SBI Capital, BNP, ICICI Securities, Deutsche Bank, Kotak, and JM Financial are leads on the IPO.

        11th September 2017

      • ICICI Lombard General Insurance All Set To Launch IPO on September 15

        ICICI Lombard General Insurance Company, a subsidiary of ICICI Bank, is all set to launch its IPO (initial public offer) on Sept 15. They are planning to sell up to 8,62,47,187 equity shares via the subscription, out of which up to 3,17,61,478 equity shares are being sold by the promoter, ICICI Bank, and up to 5,44,85,709 shares being sold by investor Fal Corporation. A reservation of up to 43,12,359 equity shares will be set aside for purchase by ICICI Bank shareholders. The issue will be open from Sept 15 to Sept 19.

        ICICI Lombard was established as a joint venture between India’s ICICI Bank and Fairfax Financial Holdings, based in Canada. According to the draft red herring prospectus filed by the insurer with SEBI (Securities & Exchange Board of India) in July, ICICI Bank holds a 62.95% stake in its general insurance company, FAL has 21.92% shareholding, Red Bloom Investment with 9.01% and Tamarind Capital Pte Ltd hold 1.59%. ICICI Lombard is the largest private-sector, non-life insurer in India, based on their gross direct premium income from FY17.

        ICICI Securities, DSP Merrill Lynch Limited, and IIFL Holdings will be global co-ordinators and book running lead managers to the issue. Edelweiss Financial Services, CLSA India Private Limited, and JM Financial Institutional Securities are book running lead managers to the issue. In addition to ICICI Lombard, 2 state-run general insurers - General Insurance Corporation of India and New India Assurance Company, along with 2 private life insurers - SBI Life and HDFC Standard Life are also planning to launch their IPO for which they are awaiting approval from SEBI.

        In its subsidiary ICICI Prudential Life Insurance, ICICI Bank has lowered its stake to 54.89% percent via the IPO that will launch later this month. ICICI Lombard is also the first life insurance company to be listed on the stock exchange.

        7th September 2017

      • What To Consider Before Taking a Term Plan

        If you want to purchase a term insurance plan, there is no shortage of them in the financial market. Term plans are an affordable and efficient type of life insurance which is ideal for people of all ages, ranging from young professionals to retired people. When it comes to purchase insurance, insurers are always trying to compete with each other so they can make the maximum sale. In order to do that, they offer loads of benefits with their policies which is a good thing for the customer. However, when multiple insurers do that, it can be difficult for one to choose between insurers for the right plan. To make the challenge a little simpler, here are some factors which one can look to consider when buying a term plan.

        • You must assess your needs and requirements before taking the term plan. Take your assets and liabilities into account.
        • After you have evaluated your needs, you can better decide the amount of coverage that you will need to sufficiently cover your dependents.
        • When deciding on a plan, look at the premium being charged and ensure that it is proportionate to the sum assured that is being provided under the plan.
        • Deciding the tenure of the plan is a crucial question. Look at your liabilities and calculate how long you will take to pay them off.
        • There is one term plan which provides returns of premiums when the plan reaches maturity. However, the premiums for this plan will be higher than those of a normal term plan.
        • Another important factor is choosing the right beneficiary. Appoint someone who you think is capable of handling finances i.e. the sum assured amount which will be received as death benefit.
        • Another important thing to consider is the life stage you are at when planning to take a term plan and which of your family members do you think will require financial cover.
        • One of the most important factors to consider when taking a term plan is reviewing your liabilities as they are paramount in deciding the amount of cover you should take and for what duration.
        • When taking a term plan, it is imperative that you decide whether or not your dependents are adept at handling and mam=nagging finances. Are you confident that they can wisely invest the sum assured received after your death or do you think you need to provide them with a monthly income.
        • Many term plans also offer the provision of providing the sum assured partly in lump sum and partly as regular income.
        • Another factor to consider when deciding the amount of cover under a term plan is factoring the cost of inflation when deciding the appropriate sum that will shield your dependents financially.

        6th Septemberr 2017

      • Customer Aadhaar Data Not Compulsory For Insurance Sale: IRDAI

        The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) has finally laid the long-standing debate on Aadhaar being a compulsory KYC requirement for insurance purchase, to rest. According to the most recent statement, IRDAI has ruled it is not compulsory for insurance companies to authenticate policyholders or clients data using their Aadhaar detail. This can only be done after the insurer has received the policyholder’s consent to do so. Through two circulars in 2013 and 2015, IRDAI had previously allowed Aadhaar based e-KYC service which was offered by Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) for the KYC verification purposes. However, it has only recently clarified that the insurer can only access a policyholder’s details from UIDAI for identification and authentication after getting the concerned policyholder’s consent on a voluntary basis.

        This ruling by the IRDAI comes after the recent declaration given by a nine-judge bench of the Supreme Court, headed by former Chief Justice of India J.S Khehar (succeeded by Dipak Misra), which unanimously agreed to the Right to Privacy being a part of Right to Life and Liberty as assured by the Article 21 of the Indian constitution.

        In addition to this ruling, IRDAI has also said that for the purpose of KYC formalities, the information downloaded from UIDAI should be considered as sufficient. However, if there is an obvious and glaring differences between the name or photograph being unclear, the insurer is at liberty to carry out additional due diligence and maintain a record of the additional documents sought to pursue such diligence. These rules will be applicable to all categories of insurers, which includes standalone health, life, and general insurance.

        5th September 2017

      • The Parties Involved In An Insurance Contract

        As we all know, an insurance policy is a contract between not only the insurer and the insured but also other parties who are an equally important part. Let’s take a quick look at all the parties which are involved in an insurance contract.

        • Insured - The insured is the individual who is being covered against risks under the policy. In many cases, the insured may also be the policyholder. If the insured is not a policyholder, the insurer will ask about the insurable interest before approving the application. Close family members or business partners will have an insurable interest in an individual. Having insurable interest means that the policyholder must show that they will undergo financial loss in case of the death of the insured. This is the reason a person can not just purchase life insurance on anyone they wish.
        • Insurer – Insurer would refer to the insurance provider or company which provides the insurance cover to the insured in exchange for premiums.
        • Policyholder/Proposer/Owner – This is the person who purchases the insurance policy. The right of ownership over the policy lies with the policyholder and he/she will have the right to changes to the policy. The policyholder or owner is also liable to pay the premiums of the policy. Some of the rights of a policyholder are right to transfer ownership of the policy, right to alter policy provisions, right to surrender or cancel the policy, right to pledge the policy for a loan or to borrow against its cash value, right to name or change a beneficiary, right to decide how the death benefit will be provided to the beneficiaries, among other rights.
        • Beneficiary – This is the person who will be entitled to receive the benefits that will be payable under an insurance policy. Beneficiary or beneficiaries can be a spouse, parents, children, siblings or business partner, etc. there can be one or more beneficiaries named in a single policy. Under life insurance, beneficiaries are usually categorized as primary and contingent. Primary beneficiaries are those who will receive the death benefit in case of the death of the life assured. Contingent or secondary beneficiaries are those who will receive the death benefit if the primary beneficiary passes away before the life assured does.

        5th September 2017

      • IndiaFirst Life Insurance launches First Chatbot ‘IRIS – IndiaFirst Responds’

        IndiaFirst Life Insurance, one of the country’s leading insurance provider which is promoted by Andhra Bank and Bank of Baroda, and Legal & General, recently announced the launch of its first ever chatbot, IRIS - IndiaFirst Responds.

        The chatbot, IRIS, comes equipped with a wide range of features like product descriptions, premium statements, customer notices, fund value inquiries, application status, and surrender value inquiry. With the chatbot, IndiaFirst is aiming to strengthen the self-service facility that it provides for not only customers but also for field sales. The other objective of introducing the chatbots is to help in reducing the dependence on contact centres for basic requests or information, and replace the system with a modernized process which will help enrich customer experience.

        On the occasion of the launch, Mr. R.M. Vishakha, MD & CEO, IndiaFirst Life Insurance said that this facility has been introduced in line with the company’s philosophy of ‘customer first’. The constant endeavour has been to employ simple processes and procedures with the viable adoption of technology. ‘IRIS (IndiaFirst Responds) is a significant step towards offering end-to-end digital platform and deliver personalized solutions to our customers. This will also ensure empowering our sales force to meet customer requirements, real-time. As we are ambitious in our sales target, this is our effort to create a robust customer service process, to be able to handle high sales volume, going forward.

        Mr. Mohit Rochlani, Director, Operations & IT, IndiaFirst Life Insurance, further added that the chatbot will now enable customers to get instant solutions and answers to their questions. The response will now be received in real time and there is no need to wait. “The Real-time expense management adds a layer of improved functionality and simplifies the day-to-day functioning of our sales force. This will help them focus on what’s most important to us as team, which is offering the customer the best product and service”, he said.

        In addition to the IRIS chatbot, IndiaFirst has also rolled out a unique solution through an app called Knowledge base. This feature will empower the sales teams to search for various queries for various products and processes present in the company, so that they can get correct and accurate responses to their queries instantly while on the move.

        7th September 2017

      • SBI Life Insurance Likely To Launch IPO in Sept 2017; Plans To Raise Rs.8000 crore

        India’s biggest banking company, State Bank of India may be planning to launch the initial public offer (IPO) of its insurance arm, SBI Life Insurance company, in as short a time as the third week of Sept 2017, according to media reports. Through this IPO, SBI Life is aiming to raise an amount of nearly Rs.8,000 crore. The insurer is expecting to receive approval for the IPO from Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) and Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) during the ongoing week itself. SBI’s Board of directors had already given approval for the IPO earlier this year in May.

        Up till September 2017, three insurance companies have filed draft papers for IPOs which are expected to collectively be worth approximately Rs.20,000 crore.

        Speaking about the IPO, SBI said that under the offer for sale, they will be offering up to 12% of equity shares. Out of this, up to 8% stake will be sold by SBI Life, while another 4% of the stake will be sold by BNP Paribas Cardif. In SBI Life Insurance, SBI owns a majority of 70.1% of the stake while the remaining 26% is held by Cardiff.

        6th September 2017

      • Breakeven Likely To Be Delayed Due To Strategy Shift, Says Aegon Life CFO

        Aegon Life Insurance Company, a leading general insurance provider in India will be experiencing a delay in achieving a breakeven in 10 years (around FY19). The insurer which was earlier all set to break even by FY19, will see that getting delayed by two to three years, said Mr. Rajeev Chugh, Chief Financial Officer of Aegon Life. In August 2016, Aegon Life shifted its strategy from a multi-channel presence to a more focussed digital one. The consequence of this was the insurer exited the agency channel, except for renewal of existing policies. The company now employs nearly 4,000 agents, which is about 2,000 less than the number employed before. The second strategy that the insurer has adopted is to have direct customer engagement by appointing relationship managers who will directly be communicating with customers. Not only will these relationship managers self-source but will also cross-sell policies to existing customers. The third pillar of their new strategy is to focus on group protection business which will provide access to a larger customer base.

        To implement these strategies, the insurer will work with equity brokerages and wealth managers and equity brokerages in order to tap into their client base. The immediate impact that this change in strategy had was a decline in premium income of the previous financial year, which came down from Rs.136 crore in FY16 to Rs.91 crore in FY17. This, Mr. Chugh said was due to the mid-course correction which will even out over the span of the next 2 years.

        For the current fiscal, the CFO expects a 50% growth which will is likely to push the turnover to about Rs.150 crore. He is also hopeful that the shift in emphasis will also result in a 70% to 80% rise in the customer base over the next 2 years.

        4th September 2017

      • India First Life Insurance Opens New Branch in Vijayawada

        IndiaFirst Life Insurance Company Limited, one of India’s leading insurance provider, recently celebrated the launch of two new branches which were inaugurated at Vijayawada and Rajahmundry in Andhra Pradesh. At the opening celebration were present Mr. Mohit Rochlani, Director- IT and Operations, IndiaFirst Life Insurance Co. Ltd., and Mr. GSV Krishna Rao, Circle General Manager, Vijayawada, Andhra Bank. With these 2 branches, IndiaFirst Insurance will have a total of 3 branches in the state of Andhra Pradesh. The third branch is already present in the city of Vishakhapatnam.

        Besides this, IndiaFirst also has a corporate agency tie-up with Chaitanya Godavari Grameena Bank (CGGB) in Guntur which has over 106 branches across the various districts of Andhra Pradesh. With this tie-up, they aim to provide insurance services to a larger number of customers, including those who are customers of Chaitanya Godavari Grameena Bank.

        Speaking on the occasion of the inauguration, Mr. Rochlani, Director- IT and Operations, IndiaFirst Life Insurance Co. Ltd., said, that with these two new branches, IndiaFirst is looking to strengthen its distribution network in order to achieve deeper insurance penetration in Andhra Pradesh which has great potential. The company aims reach out to a larger number of customers and provide them with access to their varied suite of products which includes protection plans, retirement plans, savings plans and wealth maximization.

        Speaking on behalf of Andhra Bank, Mr. GSV Krishna Rao, Circle General Manager, Vijayawada, Andhra Bank, said that following this partnership, Andhra Bank will strive to not only raise awareness regarding the importance of having insurance but also be able to offer simple and easy to comprehend insurance plans to their customers.

        He said that while Vijayawada is a fast growing metropolis, Rajamundry is a cultural hub, and both these cities together present vast opportunities for selling insurance products and services. With this partnership, people from these cities will not be able to access cutting-edge technology, tailor-made products and personalized insurance advisory.

        4th September 2017

      • Insurance firms To Employ Blockchain to Make Transactions Simpler

        13 insurance providers in India have joined hands to use a technology similar to blockchain with the objective of creating a central repository of policyholder data. This repository will help insurers in eliminating the need for the registration procedure for multiple policies.

        Speaking about the move, Mr. Akshay Dhanak, vice-president, business systems & technology at HDFC Life Insurance, said that if the same records are available to multiple life insurance providers in the chain, they can cut down on costs incurred on conducting tests and storing records, which would otherwise be high if the same was being conducted separately. He also said that there is still a lot remaining to be done with respect to insurance, such as KYC, medical underwriting, financial underwriting, etc. Having all this data on a blockchain will help eliminate duplication of these procedures.

        Blockchain is can be understood as a digital ledger which can store information of all cryptocurrency transactions. However, in this case, it is a distributed and decentralised method of storing information that will be based on the mutual agreement of the members of the blockchain. According to PwC’s Global Fintech Report 2017, 77% of financial technology institutions are expected to adopt blockchain as a process by 2020. The top areas of usage are predicted to be payments, fund transfer and digital identity management.

        Mr. Pankaj Pandey, CIO, IDBI Federal Life Insurance said that since there is a very small number of insurance companies present in India, it can be a challenge if more than one standard for blockchain exists. They are hoping for more and more companies to gradually become a part of the blockchain which can help detect multiple fraudulent claims efficiently as compared to claims of companies which are not a part of the platform yet.

        1st September 2017

      • HDFC ERGO Partners With ItzCash to offer insurance

        In an initiative to enhance their reach in tier II and III cities, India’s leading insurer, HDFC ERGO has recently announced a tie-up with ItzCash’s, also one of India’s leading payment solutions provider. HDFC has entered into a strategic agreement with ItzCash, which has a nationwide franchise network, in order to offer their insurance products.

        Following the partnership, HDFC ERGO will be offering a varied range of general insurance policies such as health insurance, motor insurance, and fire insurance. Also, the whole process, starting from application filing to making payments will be done digitally via ItzCash’s network. This will help eliminate the chances of human error and other types of delays so that customers get real-time service.

        Furthermore, another benefit of the partnership which customers will get is that they can pay their premium at the nearest ItzCash outlet. Mr. Anuj Tyagi, Executive Director, HDFC ERGO General Insurance Company said that the insurer looks forward to utilizing ItzCash’s proven business operations which will enable them to not only collaborate but also expand their reach by offering home, health, and fire insurance to a wider chunk of customers across India.

        1st September 2017

      • IRDAI has permitted usage of OTP for opening e-Insurance Account

        The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) has permitted the usage of One-Time Password (OTP) for opening e-Insurance Account (eIA). OTP is generated by the computer system and sent to the individual's mobile number or email to authenticate a transaction. OTP is allowed as an alternative to electronic signature which was previously considered a valid authentication. IRDAI has also permitted the verification of the e-Insurance Account holder through the e-KYC authentication facility provided by the UIDAI. UIDAI provides biometric authentication of an individual based on Aadhaar.

        11th September 2017

      • Uber To Provide Free Life Insurance To Its Drivers

        On the occasion of its 4-year anniversary in India, international cab service provider, Uber, recently announced that it would be providing free life insurance coverage to its entire fleet of drivers, beginning 1 September 2017. This unique policy will cover all drivers from the ages between 18 to 65 and provide cover of Rs.5 lakh (in case of death or permanent disability) and cover of Rs.2 lakh in case of hospitalisation which also includes a sub-limit of up to Rs.50,000 for outpatient treatment. This coverage is provided to drivers if they suffer from any of the aforementioned when they have logged in to the Uber app and are available for trip requests, en route or on a trip with Uber.

        This life insurance service for drivers has been launched by Uber in association with ICICI Lombard General Insurance, one of India’s leading insurance provider. Speaking about the announcement, Mr. Prabhjeet Singh, General Manager (North India), Uber, said that all the new schemes being implemented are to assist the drivers in the best way possible.

        For Uber, India is its largest market to date, far ahead of the U.S. The company has rolled out the insurance policy for nearly 4,50,000 drivers, including those from other Asian countries like Indonesia and Myanmar. Majority of the US is still not a part of this plan however.

        Speaking about the partnership with Uber, Mr. Bhargav Dasgupta, MD and CEO, ICICI Lombard General Insurance, said that the insurer has been one of the pioneering forces when it came to introduction of non-life insurance solutions which changing market dynamics and emerging trends. The Uber-ICICI Lombard partnership is also a step in that very direction.

        Besides insurance, Uber has also introduced a range of service like heat maps, driver destinations, pause requests and in-app chat, among others, with the aim of enhancing the experience for their driver-partners.

        31st August 2017

      • Canara HSBC Oriental Life launches ‘PoS - Easy Bima Plan’

        Canara HSBC Oriental Bank of Commerce Life Insurance Company (CHOICE) recently announced a new ‘Point-of-Sale’ product which has been designed for the mass-market segment. The ‘PoS - Easy Bima Plan’ is the first-ever PoS product launched by the insurer and is a pure term insurance plan which, in addition to providing life coverage, also includes a provision where all premiums paid during the payment term are returned if the policyholder survives till the policy matures.

        Speaking on the occasion of the launch, Mr. Anuj Mathur, Chief Executive, CHOICE, said that the plan has been so designed that it is hassle-free to purchase. the buyer has to go through a single-step identification process and fill up a simple proposal form. The documentation required for purchasing the plan is very simple and there is no requirement of undergoing a medical test. Another advantage of this plan is that it is highly affordable. Premiums for this plan start from Rs.1,000 per year. The plan also includes built-in double life cover to cover accidental death.

        The PoS – Easy Bima Plan will initially be available at a regional rural bank of Canara Bank. However, in the coming 2 months, the plan will be available for purchase at Canara Bank and Oriental Bank of Commerce (OBC) branches. A few more months down the line, the plan will most likely also be available online.

        31st August 2017

      • Credit Societies Likely To Get Insurance Cover Soon

        There is good news for credit societies located in Mumbai which will soon get to enjoy insurance coverage from government agencies like district cooperative banks. The state has 15,000 credit societies which have an overall deposit of Rs.25,000 crore. With no insurance cover, several depositors failed to get their deposits back when the credit societies were hit by a financial crisis.

        Co-operative minister, Mr. Subhash Deshmukh has mentioned that the decision to insure credit societies, most of which pertain to the farming sector, will cover all 15,000 organisations. He also mentioned how the cooperative infrastructure/system has been in a state of distress owing to the financial crunch. Therefore, considering that, there is an obvious and urgent need to insure and support the cooperative infrastructure in various sectors against risk.

        The proposal to insure credit societies has already been drafted and the department is expected to submit it to the state cabinet in the next meeting for a final confirmation. The demand to insure co-operatives was proposed by the federation of cooperatives which is presided by Mr. Kaka Koyte.

        Earlier, all cooperative societies in the state of Maharashtra had been asked by the government to donate 20% of their profits towards ‘public purposes’ and strengthening of other smaller societies. This rule was applicable to all cooperatives societies, except those in the housing sector.

        30th August 2017

      • After The Success Of Jan Dhan Yojana, Modi Govt. Now Looks To Get More Indians Insured

        The Jan Dhan Yojana, which was introduced by PM Modi 3 years ago, has done an impressive job of getting a vast chunk of India’s rural and semi-urban population into the banking sphere, and have made them a part of the formal economy. Under the Yojana, nearly 295 million beneficiaries have opened accounts which have an overall deposit of Rs.65,845 crore. Out of the overall beneficiaries who have opened accounts, a whopping 230 million have been issued debit cards which will give them some experience about the workings of the digital economy for the very first time. Over 170 million of the beneficiaries of the Jan Dhan Yojana hail from semi-urban and rural regions of the country. It is quite eye-opening to know that the number of Jan Dhan bank account holders in states like Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand Bihar, and Chhattisgarh is more or less at par with the population of countries like Australia and Canada combined.

        In his address on Aug 27 to the nation, PM Modi said that individuals who have opened accounts under PMJDY (Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana) have also received insurance benefit. With schemes like the Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana and the Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana, where the premium ranges from Re.1 and Rs.30, the poor are gaining a new sense of confidence. Countless families have experienced the benefit of insurance as they received the sum assured of the policy after the death of the family head or in times of loss, within only a few days.

        However, as compared to the PMJDY, the other two insurance schemes - PM Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana and Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana, both of which were introduced in 2015 have only been partly successful so far. The PMJJBY (PM Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana) life insurance scheme was only able to attract 35 million people across the country since its launch. With the PMSBY (Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana), which is an accident insurance scheme, things look only slightly better, as per the Finance Ministry data. Approximately 110 million people have opted to be covered under the PMSBY scheme. These numbers are nowhere close to spectacular, considering that the government is really pushing these two schemes with the aim of promoting social security for all in India.

        One of the reason why the accidental insurance scheme (PMSBY) is more popular than the life insurance scheme (PMJJBY) is the difference in premiums. Though both these schemes provide Rs.2 lakh of cover, the accident insurance scheme can be purchased by the poor on the payment of a measly premium of Rs.12 every year. Another reason why the accident insurance scheme is more popular among the economically challenged population is it assures a cover of Rs.1 lakh to the family of the life assured in case the latter suffers from a partial disability following an accident. The premiums for the life insurance scheme stand at Rs.330 per year, which is close to the daily income of many of these people.

        Another reason which has been a major contribution toward the non-adoption of these policies is that the policyholder does not have any control over it’s tenure or continuity. One of the terms of the insurance policy is that the buyer has no other option but to have the premium be auto-debited from their bank account.

        Also, insurers are quite reluctant to settle life insurance claims from those who are covered under these schemes. As per the finance ministry information, only 93% out of the total claims received have been settled by these insurers. The lower percentages of claim settlements are likely to further discourage people from opting for these schemes.

        30th August 2017

      • DHFL Pramerica Life Insurance Enter Into Partnership With Dhanlaxmi Bank

        DHFL Pramerica Life Insurance Company Ltd. (DPLI), one of India’s most trusted insurance provider has announced its tie-up with Dhanlaxmi Bank for the distribution of its portfolio of retail and group life insurance products. According to the agreement signed between the two, the 90-year-old Dhanlaxmi Bank will become DPLI’s corporate agent and help make life insurance products more accessible to customers.

        On the occasion of the tie-up, Mr. G. Sreeram, MD & CEO of Dhanlaxmi Bank said that the partnership with DHFL Pramerica will be instrumental in providing the best-in-class life insurance products to customers from varied segments. Mr. Anoop Pabby, MD at DHFL Pramerica Life Insurance said that with the association with Dhanlaxmi Bank, DPLI will be better able to continue working on increasing life insurance penetration by offering segmented products, supported by digital and CRM capabilities which will help make insurance more accessible to customers.

        The southern region of India is important potential market for DHFL Pramerica. an Following the tie-up with Dhanlaxmi Bank, the insurer will gain a stronger position and hold on its presence in state like Karnataka, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu with the help of a strong distribution channel. With this strategic move, not only will DPLI strengthen its presence in the south but also be able to enhance their distribution footprint across the country.

        At the moment, DHFL Pramerica boasts of a total number of 103 branches across India, out of which 6 branches are located in 6 different south Indian cities of Chennai, Coimbatore, Bengaluru, Belgaum, Hyderabad and Kochi. The insurer offers 28 life insurance products and 6 add-on riders which fulfil various purposes like life insurance needs, children future protection, retirement planning, and more. DHFL Pramerica was established as a joint venture between Prudential International Insurance Holdings Ltd (PIIH) and DHFL Investments Limited (DIL), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Dewan Housing Finance Corporation Ltd.

        29th August 2017

      • Jan Dhan 3rs Anniversary: 30 Crore Families Have Got Jan Dhan Accounts, Rs.65,000 Crore Deposited

        The popular Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana which was kick-started by Prime Minister Narendra Modi with the objective of promoting financial inclusion, has completed 3 successful years today. Started on 24 Aug 2014, the scheme was introduced to ensure that the common man gets access to a variety of essential financial services like banking, savings accounts, deposit accounts, remittance, pension, credit, insurance and more.

        Speaking on the occasion of its anniversary, the PM mentioned that a minimum number of 30 crore new families have got Jan Dhan accounts which have an overall deposit close to Rs.65,000 crore. He said that surveys have been conducted by banks to find out just how the common man has been able to benefit from not only the Jan Dhan Yojna scheme, but also various other insurance schemes like Pradhan Mantri Jeewan Jyoti Bima Yojna and Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojna, and the Pradhan Mantri Mudra Yojna. The findings of the survey have been nothing short of inspiring.

        The Prime Minister said that these schemes are a way of saving for the poor and help empower their future. Individuals and families who have opened their accounts under the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojna have benefited from insurance as well.

        Finance Minister Arun Jaitley mentioned that the JAM (Jan Dhan, Aadhaar and mobile) trinity has ‘’brought about a social revolution which will help bring all Indians into a common financial, economic and digital space, similar to how GST has created a unified market.’’

        Mr Jaitley also said that the JAM trinity not only benefit the people but also offers substantial benefits to the government, the economy and especially the poor. Highlighting its benefits, Mr. Jaitley said that with JAM, not only will the poor have access to financial services but they will also be cushioned against life's major shocks with insurance. All this while, government finances will get a chance to be improved due to the reduced subsidy burden and weeding out of leakages from the system.

        29th August 2017

      • Life insurance Is The Key To Providing Protection & Leaving A Legacy

        India is a family-oriented country where traditions and beliefs still hold strong. Putting one’s wishes aside to fulfil those of your loved ones has long been the norm. Also, many elders took it upon themselves to leave a legacy behind for the family, after their death.

        Considering the above, life insurance has been the key in allowing individuals achieve that. Life insurance policies which offer lifetime coverage are instrumental in helping one achieve both goals – of providing financial protection to their dependents in case of untimely demise, and also leaving behind a legacy for them. Under a whole life policy, the family of the life assured is entitled to receive the death benefit after the former has passed away, even if at the age of 100.

        This way, they can somewhat ensure that their loved ones will not be eft fending for themselves and will have some sort of financial cushion to fall back on. The benefit received after the life assured’s death can help the beneficiary take care of short and long term liabilities and expenses like loan repayments, household expenses, children’s upbringing, etc.

        24th August 2017

      • Must Provide Capital Commitment, Says IRDAI To Pros Seeking Insurance Licence

        The Insurance Regulatory Development Authority of India (IRDAI) recently announced that it is looking at capital commitment from professionals seeking or applying for an insurance licence. This is being done to ensure that the fund flow contuse unhindered to promote future growth, especially for those which are supported by short-sighted private equity players.

        Speaking on the matter, an IRDAI official said that it is looking for long-term investment commitment from promoters seeking a spot in the insurance space. In case of individuals seeking the same, IRDAI would like to ensure the capital of the promoter is long-term and their net worth strong.

        Currently, IRDAI is evaluating applications from three individuals who are backed by large funds and seeking to operate general insurance companies. These are Go Digit General Insurance by Kamesh Goyal, Acko General Insurance by Varun Dua and Aspire Health Insurance by Rajesh Relan. One of the applicants said that IRDAI is proceeding slowly when it comes to granting licences as they wish to evaluate who is the best candidate that can fund future capital call and ensure stickiness of capital. Adding to this, they also said that IRDAI is not keen on providing insurance licences to individuals turned promoters, which is why they are asking them for big capital commitment.

        When it comes to granting an insurance licence, IRDAI is laying maximum focus on the promoter’s the ability of build a successful business. This depends not only on the promoter’s ability at understanding the business but also the amount of capital they can bring into the business. This is due to the fact that insurance companies are in need of more funding from domestic sources since foreign direct investment has been capped at 49%.

        28th August 2017

      • Importance Of Having Adequate Insurance Coverage

        While many people have already become aware of the importance of having an insurance policy, there are many among these who do not know the importance of being adequately insured. According to the data available, a majority of households only put away 19% of their total savings towards life insurance. This is duly reflected in the fact that insurance penetration in India sits at a mere 2.72%, as opposed to 3.74% in Asia and 3.99% in Europe.

        When it comes to the discussion of under-insurance in India, it is not due to the rising rates of premiums for policies. In fact, premium rates have only gone up by a mere 3 to 4% in the past 4 years. The real reason for under-insurance lies in the fact that most policy owners fail to revise their policies to adjust to changed requirements. In case someone has received insurance cover from their employer, they live under the notion that the employer offered cover will be sufficient. However, this is seldom the case, due to which, many people end up paying hefty medical bills. In case of employer-provided life insurance, the same may hardly be sufficient to adequately cover the short and long term expenses of your dependents such as debts, loans credit card dues, day0to-day expenses, education expenses, etc.

        When it comes to assessing your insurance coverage, the thumb rule is to take an amount which is 10x your annual salary. Calculate the expenses your family is likely to incur in the coming 15-20 years and don’t forget to take inflation into account.

        24th August 2017

      • More and More Insurers Heading The IPO Way

        India’s IPO market seems to be in for a good time this year as more and more insurance providers hop onto the IPO bandwagon. There is a rush of insurers looking to tap into the increasing investor demand for financial assets. By the end of this year, at least 4 Indian insurance providers will be offering stocks via an IPO, bringing the total figure of IPO funds close to 500 billion rupees.

        HDFC Standard Life Insurance Co. is planning to raise as much as Rs.100 billion via their IPO, while SBI Life’s potential IPO could raise about Rs.85 billion rupees. Insurance providers are looking to benefit from the surge in the Indian equity market where there is a shortage of insurance stocks for investors who are looking to diversify their holdings in the financial industry. This surge in IPO offerings has followed after the Indian parliament’s decision to increase the foreign investment and ownership in the nation’s insurers from 29% to 49%.

        21st August 2017

      • Reliance Capital Files IPO Application To List Its General Insurance Arm

        Life insurance is a contract wherein the insured agrees to pay the insurer a fixed premium either regularly (for regular premium policies), for a fixed number of years (for limited premium pay policies), or just once (for single premium policies). However, what can one do in case they have an unexpected inflow of income and would like to direct the same towards their life insurance plan? This option is available under ULIPs or unit linked insurance plans where the policy permits the insured to top up their premiums. This is how it’s done.

        Top-up Premium

        Top-up premium is simply the amount of money which is paid at unspecified intervals and over and above the base policy premium, as specified under the insurance agreement. According to insurance rules, every top-up premium will be considered as a single premium contract. In simpler words, all the additional premium which you pay towards your ULIP must get you additional coverage as well.

        According to the regulations for single-premium policies, for those up to the age of 45 years, the minimum sum assured must be 125% of the single premium. For individuals above 45 years, the minimum sum assured must be 110% of the premium paid.

        The premium top-up option is usually not available under traditional insurance-cum-investment policies because these plans are usually accompanied with a minimum guaranteed return and are opaque. ULIPs, on the other hand, feature unbundled costs and offer market-linked returns.

        28th August 2017

      • ICICI Lombard’s InstaSpect to assist in faster claim settlements

        ICICI Lombard has introduced a video inspection facility, the InstaSpect, for car insurance claims that is nothing short of a phenomenon in the Indian insurance domain. A first-of-its-kind initiative in the industry, the live video inspection facility allows policyholders to record instant claims through the ICICI Lombard mobile app, ‘Insure’.

        Through the DIY app, the policyholder does the survey of the damaged car for expedition of the claim approval.

        The customer opens the InstaSpect option of the ‘Insure’ app and connects to the claims manager instantly. The manager guides the customer on performing a survey of the vehicle and streaming the video in real-time. The policy documents will also have to be uploaded following the survey.

        The claims manager then assesses the damage to the vehicle on the basis of the video and notifies the policyholder of the liability and next steps. A rough estimate of the liability and damage will also be calculated and conveyed to the customer.

        If the customer agrees to the estimate, the claims manager can approve the claim immediately. The repair of the car will commence after this approval. All other notifications and approvals will be provided to the network garage within a few hours.

        This spot-on vehicle inspection facility reduces the waiting time and boosts the transparency of the entire claims process.

        ICICI Lombard has taken a survey to assess the acceptance of the InstaSpect feature and has received an overall positive response from the participants.

        23rd August 2017

      • Birla Sun Life Survey Indicates Income Stability A Bigger Concern Than Price Rise in 2017

        Birla Sun Life Insurance Co. Ltd., one of India’s leading insurance provider recently conducted a survey to find out major financial concerns being faced by citizens of the country. The Birla Sun Life Protection Survey findings indicated that in 2013, rising prices were a primary financial concern of nearly 46% of the overall respondents. However, in 2017, only 13% respondents hold that view. This year’s Protection survey was taken by a total of 1,540 working individuals ranging from 22 years to 50 years of age, residing across 9 major Indian cities. For nearly 33% of the respondents taking the survey in 2017, job and income stability is a major financial concern, as compared to a mere 12% who had the same concern back in 2013.

        The second major concern among the respondents is rising health costs. Nearly 22% of the respondents taking the survey in 2017 mentioned it as another major worry, as compared to 10% of the respondents who felt the same in 2013. The other areas of concern included the rapidly declining value of money and the constant rise in household expenses, among other related concerns. In light of all this, ne positive trend has been observed, which is, that a larger number of respondents are now aware of the importance of having adequate insurance coverage.

        The need for insurance

        As opposed to 48% of respondents in 2013, nearly 60% of the survey respondents from 2017 mentioned the need to purchase insurance. Among these respondents, half of them mentioned that they have adequate coverage while 41% admitted to having inadequate coverage. According to financial experts, the ideal amount of life insurance cover one should have must be sufficient to allow the dependents (spouse, parents, and children) to take care of short and long term expenses like household expenses, loans repayments, children’s education and marriage expenses, etc. deciding on the amount of coverage that is needed can be done via two principal methods, says Mr. Prakash Praharaj, a SEBI registered investment adviser (RIA) and founder of Maxsecure Financial Planners. The need analysis method and income method are the two ways by which one can easily assess the amount of insurance coverage they require.

        According to him, term insurance is one of the best protection option as it is affordable and provides cover against the risk of death. Another option is life insurance which will protect against death and also a variety of health related issues.

        Planning for retirement

        As compared to a mere 13% respondents who acknowledged the importance of retirement planning, nearly 46% of the respondents taking the survey in 2017 observed the importance of beginning retirement planning from an early age. A higher number of people are now not only saving but also investing greater chunks of their earnings towards a retirement corpus. During the 2013 survey, about 19% of the respondents admitted to saving more than 25% of their income. In 2017, nearly 44% of the respondents admitted to saving the same or more.

        23rd August 2017

      • Max Life Insurance Takes Significant steps To Improve Customer Centricity

        Max Life Insurance, one of India’s leading life insurance provider has recently implemented some customer centric measures to encourage and build customer trust. The insurer has been successful in reducing the unclaimed overdue amount to customers from Rs.213 crore (2016) to a much lower amount of Rs.50 crore, as recorded on 31 March 2017. This figure could possibly be the lowest in the insurance industry where the Unclaimed Overdue to the customer has been recorded at Rs.10,469 crores as in March 2017. Over the course of the last 5 years, Max Life Insurance has registered an average reduction of 25% in this aforementioned amount, which is quite significant, considering that at the industry level, there has been an average increase of 51% increase in unclaimed overdue. In this regard, Max Life has been the only exception. Unclaimed overdue is the money that belongs to the customer but remains unpaid due to many reasons. As a result, it is an ultimate loss for the customer and this itself goes against the spirit of trust which customers have in their life insurance provider.

        Mr. Prashant Tripathy, Sr. Director & Chief Financial Officer at Max Life Insurance said that the company is forever on the lookout for opportunities to enrich the experience of their customers. As per their internal data analysis, the company found out that only a fourth of their customers have been banking their cheques within a month of it’s being despatched. Out of the total unclaimed overdue amount, 75% was pertaining to instances where the bank cheques had been issued over 6 months back. Having identified this problem, the insurer came out with an effective solution to the problem so they may help maximize the benefits of their policyholders.

        After much digging, Max Life has been able to identify the problem, the root of which is gaps in customer-insurer contact and failure on the customer’s part to update their bank account details with the insurer. Also, the penetration rate of banking is very low in India and an alarmingly high number of bank accounts continue to lie dormant as customers are still apprehensive of making electronic payments. To handle these issues, Max Life dedicated expert personnel from various departments such as finance, distribution, and operations to find solutions which are not only easy to execute but will also enable timely payment to customers.

        Within a short span of a year of implementing this solution, the insurer has achieved commendable results, and has been able to lower the unclaimed overdue amount to Rs.50 crore. They continue to strive to completely eliminate this in the course of the next few years.

        22nd August 2017

      • IRDAI Takes Steps To Make Insurance Even Safer For Customers

        In an effort to make insurance transactions more transparent, prompt and safe for customers, IRDAI (Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India) has recently introduced a set of regulations which will require insurance companies to regulations make a mention of important policy-related details like bonuses to be declared, revival scheme details, guaranteed surrender value, etc.

        Regulation Provisions

        IRDAI has stressed the importance of a board-approved policy to protect the interests of policyholders. Insurers will be required to mention policy details such as the Guaranteed Surrender Value of a policy, bonus types to be declared (compounded reversionary or simple), revival schemes, and more in the policy document. The email address of the policy servicing office must be compulsorily be given on the policy document as well.

        For health insurance policies, IRDAI has asked insurers to mention important details like specific and general exclusions, pre-existing diseases covered, general and specific waiting period, etc. they must also mention details of the third-party administrators, grievance redressal system, and policy migration guidelines as well. Also, insurers must settle all claims within a period of 30 days after the supporting documents have been received.

        How This Will Benefit Policyholders

        These regulations passed by IRDAI are set to benefit policyholders in many ways such as greater transparency on part of the insurance company. With the terms, conditions and other details being mentioned outright, the insurance transaction will become more transparent. Also, IRDAI has urged insurers to be more sensitive to customer needs so that more and more customers will be encouraged to not only purchase insurance but also renew their policies each year.

        When it comes to insurance, the core of the problem arises from the fact that policyholders seldom go through the terms and conditions of the policy themselves, given the often confusing technical language used. Because of this, they end up asking the agent to explain the same to them. However, many agents are also unable to comprehend these details easily, as a result of which, they are unable to translate exactly what the policy mentions. As a result, they may not be able to sell the policy.

        Considering this problem, the most suitable solution to remedy it lies in the simplification of policy conditions which are given in complicated technical terms. It is the duty of the insurer to ensure that the policyholder understands exactly what they are paying for and what they will get in return under the policy. Details, terms and conditions of the policy must be explained to the policyholder in the simplest of terms for better understanding on the policyholder’s part. Doing this can really benefit the insurers who will them be able to not only get the policyholder’s to fully understand the policy but also encourage the latter to renew their policy whenever it is about to expire.

        The other aspect of the insurance transaction which insurers must look to transform is the way in which policies are serviced and customer grievances addressed. Here, technology can be of great help and enable the insurance company to lower the margin of errors in transactions.

        When it comes to an insurer’s credibility, there are two aspects which can greatly influence the same. The first being the claim settlement ratio and the second being the time taken to resolve policy related issues. these two aspects can greatly affect the reputation of an insurance provider and either encourage or discourage a customer to carry out transactions with them in the future.

        21st August 2017

      • Reliance Capital Files IPO Application To List Its General Insurance Arm

        Reliance General Insurance Company (RGIC) recently became the fourth general insurer in India to file their IPO application with the IRDAI (Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India). With this IPO, Reliance Capital (RCap), the parent company of RGIC, plans to sell up to 25% of its stake in its general insurance venture. They plan to raise approximately Rs.1,500 to Rs.2,000 crore via the IPO. According to sources, the application for the IPO has already been filed by Reliance Capital for the RGIC IPO.

        Currently, Reliance General Insurance Company is wholly owned by Reliance Capital which is waiting for the regulatory body’s approval to sell up to 25% of its stake in RGIC in the initial offering. Apart from RGIC, Reliance Capital also has plans to list Reliance Nippon AMC and Reliance Home Finance on the market this year. According to sources, these listings are a part of the value unlocking measures being undertaken by Reliance Capital, as per which Reliance Home Finance is planned to be listed in September followed by Reliance Nippon AMC in October.

        The IPO for Reliance General Insurance is planned to be listed in November. However, earlier this year, in June, the board had already given the green signal to the proposal of listing the company independently on the stock exchange. With this IPO, the company is expecting to offer substantial value to all their stakeholders. Reliance General Insurance currently offers a wide array of general insurance products like health insurance, motor insurance, travel insurance, fire insurance, home insurance, and crop insurance.

        FY17 has been a good one for Reliance General Insurance. The insurer outperformed its competitors in the industry, recording 40% growth in FY17 along with an annual early gross written premium worth Rs.4,007 crore. Reliance General operates via a diversified distribution network which includes alliances with several leading banks like IndusInd Bank, Catholic Syrian Bank, Andhra Bank and Bank of India. The insurer has over 120 branches and 24,000+ agents across the country.

        14th August 2017

      • HDFC Life IPO To Test Its Claim On A Premium Valuation

        A year back, HDFC Life Insurance and Max Life were set to merge operations to form India’s biggest private sector insurance company which was pinned to be valued at Rs.45,000 crore with HDFC Life alone. However, the deal fell through, following which HDFC Life, which is India’s third largest insurance provider, has decided to proceed with an IPO (initial public offering). The promoters of HDFC Life have expressed the desire to have the valuation to remain as close to what the was going to be achieved following the merger with Max Life, if not more.

        For the FY17, HDFC Life’s embedded value has increased to Rs.12,390 crore. The final valuations will depend on what merchant bankers and selling shareholders decide at the time of the IPO. However, there are sufficient factors in favour of HDFC Life for commanding the valuation predicted following last year’s merger.

        The first factor is that quality of HDFC Life’s product mix is relatively superior to that of ICICI Prudential Life Insurance. 53% of HDFC’s portfolio comprises traditional policies unlike ICICI Prudential, who’s 74% share comprises of market-linked products. Also, HDFC Life boasts of a stronger franchise. It’s direct business network of branches contributes to over 50% of the new business premium which has grown at a CAGR (compounded annual growth rate) of 17.8% for the past 5 years leading up to FY17. This CAGR is also the highest among the crop of private insurance providers.

        The other factor which is likely to contribute towards the success of HDFC Life’s IPO is, that unlike last year, the stock prices will be lower this year, compared to those of ICICI Prudential Life Insurance. This is because ICICI Prudential Life Insurance currently trades at 4 times its embedded value for FY2017, while HDFC’s valuation of Rs.45,000 crore will put it the insurer at a multiple of 3.7 times its embedded value.

        ICICI Prudential was launched at a discount as compared with HDFC Life. On the day of the listing, the stock fell by 11% following the worry that its valuation was steep. However, the stock which was listed at Rs.330 per share has gained an impressive 29% and now stood at Rs.427.15 per share in a period of only 11 months. This itself will lend a helping hand to HDFC Life’s offering.

        21st August 2017

      • Guarantees Provided By Different Insurance Plans

        In today’s day and age, life insurance has become an essential commodity. Given all the risks which surround us, it is only sensible to not only have yourself but also have your loved ones insured against financial liabilities which can follow an income earner’s sudden demise. Before you buy a life insurance policy, the one thing you must consider is whether or not the cover you have purchased will be sufficient to cover the needs of our family.

        Different life insurance policies provide different types of guaranteed benefits. Some policies guarantee life cover for your dependents while others guarantee life cover which also includes an element of saving by way of investing premiums in various funds. Some policies provide life cover for a fixed term and no other benefits. So, in the end, you have to evaluate and decide which type of cover is best suited to your needs.

        Under life insurance, there are various plan providing a variety of guarantees which provide cover for different events which may take place during the policy term. These may include death, accident, or disability of the life assured. TO know more about what different insurance plans guarantee you, read further.

        Term Insurance Plans

        Term plans are also known as pure risk protection plans. This is because they only provide cover against the risk of death of the policyholder. Normally, term plans will provide cover of up to Rs.10 crore or higher. Under term plans, there is only death benefit sum assured which is provided in case of the premature death of the policyholder before the end of the policy term. There is no survival or maturity benefit which is provided after the policy matures or if the policyholder survives the policy term.

        ULIP (Unit Linked Insurance Plan)

        ULIP is another type of insurance policy which combines the benefits of life insurance cover with investment. Under a ULIP, policyholders get life insurance coverage along with a chance to invest in a variety of funds and get returns on the same. ULIP plans offer a minimum amount towards death benefit which is guaranteed but the actual amount provided under the benefit can be higher than the minimum guaranteed amount. It is however important to note that not all ULIPs offer guaranteed survival benefits. Few plans like ULIP pension plans do offer a minimum guaranteed survival benefit if the policyholder survives the policy term. Under ULIP plans, it is also likely that the amount of death benefit to be provided may increase as the fund value increases.

        21st August 2017

      • Life Insurance Sector Records 47% Growth in New Business Premium in July

        According to IRDAI data that was recently published, the life insurance companies have registered a whopping 47% growth under new business premium for the month of July. The new premium grew by 47.4% with a figure of Rs.20,427.68 crore. In comparison, the life insurance sector earned new business premium worth Rs.13,854.44 crore in the corresponding month last year. India’s biggest and sole public sector insurance company, Life Insurance corporation of India (LIC) alone recorded a 51.4% increase for premiums during the month of July. The insurer’s new premium stood at Rs.16,254.91 crore in July 2017, as compared to Rs.10,737.92 crore in July 2016.

        The remaining 23 private sector insurance companies registered an overall increase of 34% in the total business premium for July. As per the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) data, new business premium figure for July stands at Rs.4,172.76 crore as compared to Rs.3,116.52 crore which was recorded for the same month in 2016. SBI Life Insurance recorded a 25.3% increase in their income from premiums which stood at Rs.847.91 crore. ICICI Prudential Life also recorded an increase of 34.2% in their new premium income which rose to Rs.759.08 crore in July 2017.

        HDFC Standard Life recorded a 68.8% increase in their new business premium which stood at Rs.880.29 crore in July 2017, as compared to Rs.521.43 crore in July the previous year. Birla Sun Life also registered a 57.2% increase in their new premium income which stood at Rs.195.61 crore in July 2017. Canara HSBC OBC Life is one of the highest gainers who registered a whopping 75% increase in new business premium which stood at Rs 99.87 crore in July 2017.

        the overall premium collection by the insurance sector for the period between April to July 2017 increased by 18%. The total figure for July stood at Rs.53,659.66 crore as compared to Rs.45,247 crore that was recorded in July 2016.

        14th August 2017

      • Non-life Insurance Premium Increase By 9% in July

        The insurance premiums of non-life insurance companies recorded a 9% increase in the month of July. The new premium stood at Rs.9,791 crore as compared to Rs.8,975 crore which was recorded in July 2016. Out of the total premium which was underwritten by the general insurance companies during July, public sector insurance players collected a total of Rs.4,213 crore, a lower figure as compared to Rs.4,502 crore which was collected in July from the last fiscal. Private insurance players contributed nearly Rs.5,140 crore in the month of July 2017 and managed to get positive growth.

        Among the four public sector insurance companies, only National Insurance Company manged to achieve positive growth during July. They clocked an overall premium of Rs.1,123 crore this July as opposed to Rs.1,067 crore collected in July 2016.

        Although having retained the top position, New India Assurance saw a decline in their total premium for July, which dropped by 11% and stood at Rs.1,315 crore. United India Assurance recorded total premiums worth Rs.1,096 crore this July, s compared to Rs.1,220 crore last July. Oriental Insurance collected total premiums worth Rs.679 crore in July 2017 as compared to Rs.732 crore in July 2016.

        In the private sector, ICICI Lombard came on top after collecting a total underwritten premium of Rs.1,010 crore in July 2017, which was an 11% increase from last year’s July premium which stood at Rs.910 crore. Bajaj Allianz collected total premium worth Rs.590 crore in July 2017, which declined from Rs.598 crore in July 2016. HDFC Ergo General collected total premiums worth Rs.452 crore in July 2017 and saw a year on year increase as compared to Rs.320 crore which was collected in July 2016. The collected premium of 5 standalone health insurers grew from Rs.385 crore to Rs.552 crore.

        10th August 2017

      • Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance Launches Future Wealth Gain ULIP WIth Cancer Cover

        Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance Co. Ltd, one of India’s leading insurance provider has recently launched a new unit linked insurance plan (ULIP) known as ‘Future Wealth Gain’ which offers insurance cover if the life insured is diagnosed with cancer. This is a ULIP plan which offers the dual benefit of insurance cover along with the chance to invest money in market-linked funds.

        The Future Wealth Gain is classified as a type-1 ULIP where in the event of the death of the policyholder, the insurance company will pay either the insurance cover or the fund value, whichever amount is higher.

        There are two variants available under this plan – Wealth Plus and Wealth Plus Care. Under the first variant (Wealth Plus), in case the policyholder passes away during the policy term, the insurance company will provide either the sum assured or the fund value, whichever is higher, subject to a minimum payment of 105% of total premiums paid.

        Under the second variant (Wealth Plus Care), if the policyholder is diagnosed with cancer or passes away due to it, the insurer will pay either the sum assured or the fund value, whichever is higher, subject to a minimum payment of 105% of total premiums paid. Besides the aforementioned benefit, this variant of the policy also includes an income benefit where the remaining policy premiums are paid to the beneficiary as per the schedule under which they are due for payment. However, one must also remember, that the cancer cover provided under this variant is subject to an initial waiting period of 6 months. Also, individuals who are already diagnosed with cancer will not be eligible for this plan.

        The working of this policy is quite simple. The premiums paid by the policyholder will be invested in funds of their choice. Policy charges such as cost of insurance, will be taken care of from the fund value. Premium allocation charges, which can range from 0 to 8.5% in the first year, will be deducted from the premium amount itself.

        9th August 2017

      • General Insurance Corporation files draft papers for IPO

        General Insurance Corporation of India (GIC Re) recently filed a draft red herring prospectus (DRHP) for their IPO with SEBI (Securities and Exchange Board of India). GIC’s offer consists of a fresh issue of 1.72 crore shares, along with an offer for sale of 10.75 crore shares. As per the DRHP, the government’s share in the reinsurance firm after the IPO will reduce by 14.22%. GIC is making the offer based on the book building process and up to 50% of the offer will be allotted on a proportionate basis to Qualified Institutional Buyers (QIBs).

        Additionally, up to 15% of the offer will be available for allocation to non-institutional bidders on a proportionate basis, and up to 35% of the offer will be available to retail investors for allocation. GIC Re also said that it will not be receiving any proceeds from the offer for sale. The total proceeds received from the fresh issue of shares will be used for building the firm’s capital base to support growth of business, maintain current solvency levels and for other general corporate purposes.

        In terms of profits, GIC recorded a profit after tax of Rs 3,127 crore in FY17 which is a significant increase of 9.8% as compared to the profits from the last fiscal, mainly attributed to growth in investment income and crop insurance. GIC RE’s net worth stood at Rs.47,983 crore, as compared to Rs.38,281 crore. In the current fiscal, GIC Re registered total premium income of Rs.33,585 crore, which is an 82.2% increase from last year’s figure, which stood at Rs.18,486 crore.

        9th August 2017

      • IRDA Instructs Insurers To Lower Costs, Cap on Expense Ratio Likely

        IRDAI (Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India) chairman, Mr. T.S. Vijayan has recently hinted at a likely cap on expense ratios of insurance companies. If brought into effect, this move may force insurance companies to lower agent commissions, curb misselling of policies and offer affordable products.

        Speaking at the annual insurance summit organized by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), Mr. Vijayan urged insurers to take steps to offer cost-effective insurance policies to customers instead increasing the incentives of agents in form of commissions and only focusing on upping profits. He also mentioned about the insurance information bureau which analyses various ratios and provides bigger data about the insurance industry. He urged insurers to make use of this data. He also hinted at the likely imposition of a cap on management expenses of insurance companies, a step which may be taken eventually.

        Expense ratio in the insurance industry has been a measure of profitability and is calculated by dividing the expenses associated with acquiring, underwriting and servicing premiums by the total premiums earned by the insurer. Expenses may include employee salaries, advertising costs, and commissions for the sales people. Adding to this, he said that India’s insurance sector has been troubled with high expense ratios for over a decade. As per an analysis carried out by Willis Towers Watson in June 2016, the overall expense ratio for the life insurance industry, with the exception of Aviva Life, Sahara Life and Bharti AXA Life, decreased from 16.3% in 2014-15 to 15.5% in 2015-16, with concentrated efforts being made to rationalize expenses. State owned LIC (Life Insurance Corp. of India) continues to take the top spot by maintaining the lowest expense ratio of 8.5% in the industry.

        8th August 2017

      • IRDAI grants Embattled Sahara Life One More Week

        The ongoing Sahara Life issue has taken a new turn. In the last update, IRDAI (Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India) had ordered ICICI Prudential Life Insurance Co. Ltd to take over Sahara Life’s insurance business on 28th July. The takeover was to take place on 31 July. However, as per the new update, this takeover has been put on hold.

        On the date of the takeover, the Securities Appellate Tribunal (SAT) ordered a status quo after Sahara India Life Insurance approached the tribunal against IRDAI’s takeover order where Sahara’s life insurance business would be transferred over to ICICI Prudential Life Insurance. Following the appeal, the tribunal has asked IRDAI to respond to the matter by 4 August. The issue will be taken up for a final hearing on 7 August. Status quo implies that Sahara Life will continue to operate under the administration of IRDAI, which has appointed Mr. R.K. Sharma, GM at IRDAI, as the administrator. During this period, Sahara Life will not be allowed to issue fresh policies to customers but can continue to service existing policies till 7 August.

        Post status quo

        More clarity regarding this issue can only be expected after Aug 7 after the SAT has made a decision regarding the matter. Till then, Sahara Life can service existing policies, which includes claims and renewal of policies. They will not be permitted to issue fresh insurance policies. However, experts have assured that the customer’s interests will be given utmost priority in the matter, regardless of the decision that is reached.

        2nd August 2017

      • Aadhaar Not Compulsory For Insurance: IRDAI

        To bring the various rumours floating around, to rest, the IRDAI (Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India) has recently announced that Aadhaar will not be a compulsory requirement under the KYC section for insurance policies. Regarding the announcement, IRDAI Chairman, Mr. T S Vijayan said that while the Aadhaar will not be a compulsory requirement for insurance, it is the most uncomplicated one.

        Speaking LIC’s shareholdings in listed companies, Mr. Vijayan mentioned that regulation for investment is 15%, but in exceptional circumstances, exemptions may be provided for higher investment. However, in the end, all investments must be done with the objective of providing benefit to the policy holders and investors.

        On the topic of distribution in the insurance sector, the chairman said that more and more insurance providers are being urged to strengthen their distribution structure by combining technology with human touch. Technology can help in eliminating instances of fraud in the insurance sector. However, digitisation alone cannot eliminate fraud. As technology continues to grow, people will find a way to hack into it and commit frauds. To prevent this, it is necessary to combine the digital with the human matrix to capture individual behavioural data.

        8th August 2017

      • SBI Life Receives Final Approval from SBI Central Board for IPO

        SBI Life Insurance will soon become the second insurer to go public after ICICI Prudential Life. SBI has approved the dilution of its stake in the life insurance company through a public offering and has now received a sectoral regulatory approval. The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) has recently approved a Rs.7,000 crore IPO application filed by SBI Life. SBI Life follows ICICI Prudential as the second largest private life insurer. SBI Life’s net profit last year has shown a growth of 10.9% to Rs.954.65 crore from the previous year’s Rs.861.03 crore in March this year.

        7th August 2017

      • Digitisation - How The Insurance Sector Is Benefiting

        Digitisation has played a very crucial role in an age when customers are on the lookout for instant solutions. The insurance sector is no stranger to the benefits of digitisation and has benefited from it to a significant extent already. With the help of digitisation, companies have been able to identify technological gaps in the process, as a result of which, they have been able to reach out to their customers in a fraction of the time taken before. Digitisation has also helped bring about a massive change in how companies do their business. As opposed to the older ways, where a business could only reach out to one customer at a time, now can reach out to multiple customers, in a shorter time and expanding its reach.

        Another significant change which digitisation has brought about is lowering the points of failure. In the insurance industry, there are multiple touch points that involve highly risky processes. Any error in these processes can not only cost the customer but also the company. With the help of automation and digitisation, companies can now reach out to their customers directly and reduce paper work by pulling information identity proofs like Aadhaar cards, PAN cards, and the like. This way, the chances of an error being committed are minimal.

        When it comes to insurance, several involved processes such as comparing between various products, purchase, servicing, underwriting, claim settlements, etc., are now carried out digitally. In an effort to reach out and address the needs of a larger volume of customers, insurers are now employing live chat bots on their websites to help resolve customer queries on a real-time basis.

        Another aspect of the insurance process which is more beneficial on the online platform is its purchase. As more and more people are now realizing, it is cheaper to get an insurance policy online, as compared to offline. With the elimination of intermediaries and middlemen in the process of online purchase, insurers are able to offer policies at a relatively lower price, hence providing higher value for money. From comparing policies to purchasing them, from getting claims registered to making premium payments, digitisation has transformed the insurance buying experience, making it streamlined, transparent and hassle-free. With the help of digitisation, insurers have been able to reach out to people in far flung areas, thereby making the service available to those who most need it.

        7th August 2017

      • Max Life Begins To Reap Benefits From Its Digital Initiatives

        About a year and a half back, Max Life Insurance started aggressively adopting digital mediums for distributing and servicing insurance products. At the time, below 5% of customers made use of digital channels to purchase insurance. Over time, with the use of the right strategies, the percentage of customers who have taken the digital approach to purchasing insurance from Max Life has gone up significantly to 20-22%.

        Mr. Manik Nangia, Director of Marketing & Chief Digital Officer of Max Life Digital initiatives, said that these digital drive has been aimed at increase productivity, bring down costs or reduce friction in processes. As an example, he mentioned that 3/4th of Max Life policies have been issued within a matter of 2 days. Also, the error rate has dropped since agents fill up the details in the presence of the customer who can verify it then and there. When it comes to reducing friction in the process, the digitization now doesn’t require a customer to provide their pay slips where the PAN number has already been provided. With the help of digitalization, agent’s calendars are synced on their phones, and reminders can be easily sent prior to meetings with potential clients.

        The analytics centre set up by Max Life has been crucial in serving the company’s complete value chain which comprises of distribution, customer service, retention, claims and fraud prevention.

        Speaking about the adoption of digital by the insurance sector, Mr. Avinash G. Singh, Associate VP of Investment Research & Analytics Practice at Aranca, a global research and advisory firm, said that the life insurance segment has been a tad slower than the general insurance segment in adopting digital. It will take at least 5-10 years for until the life insurance segment can see a significant chunk of policies to be impacted by digital, especially in semi-affluent and below households.

        4th August 2017

      • Private Banking Sector To Have A Clear Home Run Following PSU Consolidation

        Mr. Rohit Agarwal, Equity Fund Manager at Kotak Life Insurance recently gave his views on some of the events affecting the financial and insurance sector. Following the recent 25 bps rate cut by the RBI, there was a strong reaction from the markets which were expecting 50bps. Asked if Kotak would be adjusting their portfolio, Mr. Agarwal said that at this time, private banks which are making use of technology and employing digital platforms as their medium are simply far ahead of their peers, adding significantly to their market share with each quarter. He also said that a clear majority (70%) of the banking system market share has been and continues to be in favour of PSUs. However, with the likely consolidations in the PSU sector for the coming 2-3 years, the private banking sector will have a clear home run and will have the chance to actually choose the credit.

        Regarding the effect of the GST implementation on FMCG companies, Mr. Agarwal was of the view that the impact of GST has been quite evident on the FMCG sector in terms of destocking. However, it requires thorough evaluation to actually find out which companies will end up benefiting due t =o the GST implementation. While most companies will benefit, most does not include everyone. Also, the extent of the benefit won’t be the same.

        The system which was unorganized will definitely benefit by becoming increasingly organized. Stocks which are correcting 10-20% may actually end up offering good value in the long term. However, the restocking phase which began in July witnessed only minimal trade in the first 10 days of the month, following GST implementation. Due to this, expectations from the second quarter need not go high, just because the Q1 was a destocking phase. However, one can expect things to get better as the GST system gets more refined with time.

        4th August 2017

      • Kotak Life Insurance Unveils New Digital Campaign #LaterMayBeLate

        Kotak Life Insurance recently unveiled its latest digital campaign, #LaterMayBeLate which targets people between the ages of 30-40 years who have not bought insurance to secure the future of their loved ones. The campaign has been conceptualized by an agency called What’s Your Problem.

        The essence of the campaign is to tell the audience near death experiences can happen anytime and anywhere, experiences which can make us really think and act on securing the future of our loved ones. The ad is meant to urge the viewer to take insurance in order to avoid leaving their loved ones to fend for themselves.

        Jasneet Bachal, Senior Vice-President & Head, Marketing, Kotak Life Insurance, said that through the #LaterMayBeLate campaign, the company wants to create awareness among the viewers to not procrastinate anymore in protecting their loved ones. Though everyone wants to protect their family, people often procrastinate when it comes to purchasing life insurance cover, leaving the purchase for just another day. That life can be very uncertain and is something which these series of short films have tried to bring out. The campaign comes with the message that sometimes, later may be too late and we mustn’t wait for an emergency to act to protect our loved ones.

        3rd August 2017

      • SBI Life Insurance Planning To Offer Cover For Cancer Treatment

        India’s leading private life insurer, SBI Life Insurance, is looking to include cancer treatment as a part of its health insurance suite. Following the launch of a new term insurance product offering cancer treatment cover, the spokesperson for SBI Life Insurance said that the number of cancer patients is likely to go up significantly in the coming few years.

        The first cancer treatment specific insurance plan from SBI Life will be available for persons aged between 5 to 65 years. The minimum sum assured under the plan ranges between Rs.10,000 and Rs.50,000.

        With regards to international business, SBI has applied to the regulatory authorities in Bahrain to set up a branch in the country. The bank already enjoys a trusted presence in the country with two existing branches.

        3rd August 2017

      • Life Insurance Sector Expected To Witness 15-18% Growth in FY18

        The insurance sector in India is expected to record a 15% to 18% growth on an annual premium equivalent (APE) basis in the current fiscal year ending March 2018, said Mr. Karthik Srinivasan, Senior Vice-President at ICRA, a credit rating agency. In the previous fiscal, the insurance sector logged 19% growth in new business.

        Asked about the negative APE growth prediction for this fiscal, Mr. Srinivasan said that the 19% APE growth in the previous fiscal was quite unusual, given that the Ape growth in FY16 was only 11%. This year’s prediction is leaning towards the conservative side.

        Mr. Srinivasan also said that in spite of the widespread adoption of technology for various aspects of policy issuance and servicing, the life insurance sector has experienced an increase in the cost structure during the nine month period of last fiscal. This increase in expenses can be attributed partly to higher administration and partly to rise in employee related expenses, given that the industry is looking to scale up operations.

        2nd August 2017

      • HDFC & Standard Life Plan To Sell 15% Life Insurance Stake Via IPO

        HDFC (Housing Development Finance Corporation Ltd.), along with its UK-based joint venture partner, Standard Life Plc, have decided to sell a total of 15% stake in HDFC Standard Life Insurance Company Ltd via the IPO. The insurer’s board has approved the sale of almost 300 million shares via the IPO’s offer-for-sale. For the sale, parent company, HDFC plans to sell 191.24 million shares which translate to a 9.57% stake and Standard Life plans to sell 108.58 million shares which translate to about 5.43% stake.

        The IPO which HDFC Life has proposed is estimated to be valued approximately around Rs.7,000 crore ($1.1 billion) which is similar to the IPO planned by its rival SBI Life Insurance Co., which also picked merchant bankers. Last week, HDFC Life has filed its draft papers with the capital market regulator SEBI (Securities and Exchange Board of India).

        Prior to the talks of the IPO, HDFC Standard Life was planning a merger with Max Life, which would have resulted in the creation of India’s largest private-sector life insurer. The resulting company would have had annual premiums worth Rs.25,500 crore, easily crossing ICICI Prudential Life Insurance Co. Ltd., which became India’s first life insurance provider to go public.

        At present, HDFC holds 61.52% stake in the life insurance firm while Standard Life owns 35%. Other shareholders include Azim Premji’s family office PremjiInvest and company employees who hold about 3.5% of the stake.

        29th July 2017

      • 11,000 Women To Receive Life Insurance Cover On Occasion of Rakshabandhan

        On the occasion of Rakshabandhan, BJP MP from Aligarh. Mr. Satish Gautam has announced the gifting of life insurance covers to 11,000 women and girls in his constituency, this life insurance cover will be provided under the Prime Minister Suraksha Bima Yojana (PMSBY).

        Speaking about the announcement, Mr. Gautam was of the view that this life insurance cover would make for a very useful gift as it would provide security to the future of these women and girls.

        the yearly premium for the insurance scheme, which amount to approximately Rs.1.32 lakh, will be paid by the MP himself. The insurance policy will provide financial cover of up to Rs.2 lakh under PMSBY to the girls and their families against death or disability due to accidents.

        The PMSBY scheme provides a cover of Rs.2 lakh at an yearly premium of Rs.12. the cover is provided against the total and irrecoverable loss of both eyes, or loss of use of both hands or feet, or loss of sight of one eye and loss of use of hand or foot. If there is complete and permanent loss of sight of one eye or loss of use of one hand or foot, the policy will provide a sum assured of Rs.1 lakh. To avail this scheme, the applicant must be between the ages of 16 to 70 years and must have a savings bank account.

        27th July 2017

      • Subrata Roy Seeks More Time To Resolve Sahara Life Crisis

        Chairman of Sahara Group, Subrata Roy recently met the chairman of IRDAI (Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority) to seek more time to detangle the crisis at Sahara Life Insurance. Meanwhile, ICICI Prudential, India’s biggest private insurance player handed in a valuation report to IRDAI to acquire Sahara Life. Following governance related issues at Sahara Life, IRDAI recently appointed an administrator to run the crippled company. In the near future, all assets and liabilities of Sahara Life policyholders will be transferred to ICICI Prudential Life.

        However, Mr. Roy’s request for additional time has been turned down as IRDAI has has already appointed an administrator to run the Sahara Life. Mr. R.K Sharma, General Manager, IRDAI, was appointed as an administrator for Sahara Life on June 23.

        27th July 2017

      • Federal Bank Says No to Exit from JV

        Recent reports of IDBI Federal Life Insurance looking for a possible 100% stake sale has been dismissed by Federal Bank. Federal Bank, one of the key stakeholders in the insurance JV, has said that it is not looking for an exit. IDBI Federal Life Insurance is a joint venture between the Kerala-based Federal Bank, IDBI Bank and European insurer Ageas.

        Current valuations of the life insurance company show that the insurance provider was able to break-even in just five years since its inception, in 2008. As per the existing agreement between the JV partners, IDBI Bank and Federal Bank (the Indian partners) can dilute their holding in the JV, if Ageas wants to increase its stake.

        27th July 2017

      • HDFC Life Merger Called Off, Focus To Remain On HDFC Life IPO

        Last Wednesday, Mr. Deepak Parekh, Chairman of HDFC announced that the merger proposed between HDFC Life Insurance and Max Life is now off the table. HDFC will, going forward, be focusing on their launching the life insurance company to the public with their IPO (initial public offering). Mr. Parekh said that the IPO is expected to be launched by late November or by the first week of December. The HDFC Life and Max Life merger was announced in August 2016 with Max Life first merging with Max Financial Services being its parent company.

        Speaking about the update regarding the merger, Mr. Parekh mentioned about Section 35 of the Insurance Act, which clearly mentions that an insurance company can only be merged with another insurer. Adding further he said that IRDAI (insurance regulatory and development authority of India) referred the matter to the government and the Solicitor General, who collectively ruled that Max Life would no longer be considered an insurance company after merging with Max Financial Services. Since it is against Section 35 of the Insurance Act for a non-insurance company to merge with an insurance company, the merger proposal was rejected.

        Regarding its IPO, Mr. Parekh said that HDFC Life has already filed the necessary papers with the IRDAI. HDFC Life is yet to file an actuarial report to get the green signal from IRDAI to file for the IPO with SEBI. The approval for the same is likely to come through by mid-August, after which the insurer will file the draft herring prospects with SEBI.

        27th July 2017

      • Insurance Compulsory For All ECR Passport Holders From Aug 1

        From 1 Aug 2017, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) is set to implement a new move which will benefit a large majority of the blue collar workers seeking employment to 18 countries, especially the GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council0 countries. As per the proposed rule, all ECR category passport holders travelling to the specified 18 countries must be covered under a life insurance policy.

        Over 6 lakh Indians holding ECR category passports travel overseas every year to be employed as skilled, semi-skilled and unskilled workers in various sectors like construction, industrial, sanitation, agricultural and domestic services.

        As per the new regulations, every Indian citizen who applies for emigration clearance from the concerned Protector of Emigrants (PoE) must compulsorily get insured against accidental death or permanent disability leading to loss of employment while employed overseas for a minimum duration of 2-3 years for a minimum sum of Rs.10 lakh. The insurance cover shall remain valid regardless of change in employment or the worker’s location during the policy tenure. The cover shall also remain valid when the life assured visits India or any other third country.

        The move to make insurance a compulsory requirement is likely to be a blessing for states like Karnataka, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Telangana which see a large number of individuals travelling overseas to work as blue collar workers. From Karnataka alone, over 1.5 lakh people are employed in Gulf countries. For them, the State Govt. is planning to introduce insurance coverage of up to Rs.2 lakh at the cost of Rs.99 per person.

        27th July 2017

      • Insurance Companies To Provide Coverage Details Of Farmers in Telangana

        Ahead of the kharif crop season, officials of the Telangana Agriculture Department recently met with insurance companies for a review of the insurance coverage status of the farmers. Chairing the meeting was Mr. C. Partha Sarathi, Secretary at the Agriculture Department while the attendees included Mr. Jagan Mohan, Agriculture Commissioner, representatives of Agriculture Insurance Company, Chola MS, National Insurance Company, United India Insurance Company, and other officials from the Agriculture Department. following the meet, insurance companies have been requested to provide the details of all farmers who are covered (including loanees and non-loanees), area insured & the premium collected for Kharif 2017.

        25th July 2017

      • SBI Life Insurance Launches IPO

        SBI Life Insurance Company Ltd. Recently announced its entry in the IPO domain. The life insurer has filed for an IPO and the initial public offering it has made is for up to 12 crore equity shares. The shares are being offered via a red herring prospectus and are likely to be listed on the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) and the National stock Exchange (NSE). The newly offered IPO is set to consist of offer for sale by State Bank of India of up to 8 crore shares and by BNP Paribas Cardif S.A. of up to 4 crore shares. Currently, the book running lead managers for the IPO include JM Financial, Axis Capital, BNP Paribas, Citi Group and Deutsche Equities India.

        17th July 2017

      • Insurance Companies To Provide Coverage Details Of Farmers in Telangana

        Ahead of the kharif crop season, officials of the Telangana Agriculture Department recently met with insurance companies for a review of the insurance coverage status of the farmers. Chairing the meeting was Mr. C. Partha Sarathi, Secretary at the Agriculture Department while the attendees included Mr. Jagan Mohan, Agriculture Commissioner, representatives of Agriculture Insurance Company, Chola MS, National Insurance Company, United India Insurance Company, and other officials from the Agriculture Department. following the meet, insurance companies have been requested to provide the details of all farmers who are covered (including loanees and non-loanees), area insured & the premium collected for Kharif 2017.

        25th July 2017

      • HDFC Life may probably cancel merger with Max Life and concentrate on IPO

        HDFC Life Insurance may cancel the plan to take over the life insurance business of Max Group. This is because both the organisations have not been able to make a proper decision about the alternative structure for functioning as one of the ideas for the new structure was declined by the insurance regulator.

        Apart from this, the shareholders of HDFC Life are also working with dedication to achieve the goal of listing plans. This can cause a delay in the merger.

        The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) had declined the merger idea of 3 companies including Max Financial Services Ltd, HDFC Life, and Max Life Insurance in the month of May.

        14th July 2017

      • IDBI Federal Life Insurance Holds Talks Over A Possible 100% Stake Sale

        IDBI Federal Life Insurance, a joint venture between IDBI Bank, Federal Bank and Ageas, is in the process of hiring banks to manage a possible 100% stake sale. This move would mean an exit for all three of the current stakeholders. It is reported that the company is seeking over Rs.3,000 crore, with the inclusion of a premium control.

        Since the company is Bancassurance partners with IDBI Bank and Federal Bank, the sale is expected to get substantial attention and buyer interest. The significant captive customer base makes IDBI Federal Life Insurance an attractive option for investors. Citibank and Credit Suisse are reported to have already submitted their proposals. IDBI Federal Life Insurance is the most recent company in the insurance sector to look for an exit opportunity.

        26th July 2017

      • ICICI Prudential Life Records Rise in Q1 Net Profits to Rs.406 Crore

        India’s leading private sector life insurance provider,ICICI Prudential Life Insurance has recently announced its profits after tax of Rs.406 crore for the first quarter ended of the current fiscal year, which ended in June 2017. The recent profits are a modest increase from the company’s last year’s recorded profits for the corresponding quarter, which touched Rs.405 crore.

        In terms of annualised premium equivalent (APE), ICICI Prudential Life registered a growth of 68.4% in the first quarter of the current fiscal, as compared to the same quarter for the last fiscal. On APE basis, ICICI gained new premium Rs.1,704 crore in the first quarter of FY18 as compared to Rs.,012 crore collected towards new premiums for the corresponding period last year. There was also a 70.4% growth in the savings business and a 32.8% growth in the protection business for the same period.

        Mr. Sandeep Batra, Executive Director, ICICI Prudential Life Insurance, mentioned about the improvement in the 13th month persistency rate which increased to 86.7% in the first quarter as opposed to 85.7% registered last year. The insurer also registered a drop of 7.3% in costs in the current quarter, as compared to those recorded a year back. ICICI also recorded a 16.4% increase in their assets under management (AUM) which stood at Rs.1.26 lakh crore.

        25th July 2017

      • Life Insurance Penetration Can Benefit Greatly From Data Insights

        When it comes to life insurance, a customer retention duration ranging between 7 to 10 years is crucial in terms of profits. In insurance, customer retention is measured with the help of persistency rate which is basically the number of policies which customers renew every year over a period of time. A large percentage of customers do not renew their life insurance policies, as is evident by statistics released by IRDAI (Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India). The persistency rate in India stands at 61% for the year 2015-16, while internationally, the ratio is touching 90% in the 13th month itself.

        The persistency rate for life insurance is very low in India, something which is a matter of grave concern for life insurance companies. Persistency rate for life insurance is affected by 3 factors which are customers, agents and life insurers.

        The biggest cause for the low persistency rate in life insurance is because people continue to consider life insurance as a tax saving instrument instead of a protection instrument. Life insurance sales see a significant spike in the last quarter of every financial year (Dec-March) when individuals are in a hurry to invest in order to bring down their tax liabilities. However, in this transaction, all parties involved suffer losses.

        When it comes to the low life insurance persistency, there are several aspects which require attention. These include customer relationship management, product design, and selling practices adopted by agents. Also, data analytics can come to the rescue of the insurance segment plagued with low persistency rates. To enhance customer’s experience, the sales process needs to be digitized so that not only agents but also sales channels can be better monitored.

        24th July 2017

      • Reliance Nippon Life Insurance records 8% Growth in June Premium

        Reliance Nippon Life Insurance Company recently announced a rise in its total premium by 8%. The insurer’s premium for the period of April June went up to Rs.700 crore. The company’s assets under management were recorded at Rs.17, 400 crore on June 30, 2017 and have increased by a modest 10% as compared to the corresponding period from last year. Reliance Nippon was formed as a joint venture between India’s Reliance Capital and Nippon Life, Japan. Reliance enjoys a 51% stake in the venture while Nippon Life owns the remaining 49% of the stake.

        21st July 2017

      • Reliance Nippon Life Insurance records 8% Growth in June Premium

        Reliance Nippon Life Insurance Company recently announced a rise in its total premium by 8%. The insurer’s premium for the period of April June went up to Rs.700 crore. The company’s assets under management were recorded at Rs.17, 400 crore on June 30, 2017 and have increased by a modest 10% as compared to the corresponding period from last year. Reliance Nippon was formed as a joint venture between India’s Reliance Capital and Nippon Life, Japan. Reliance enjoys a 51% stake in the venture while Nippon Life owns the remaining 49% of the stake.

        21st July 2017

      • Insuring Loan With Credit Insurance

        As we move towards the future, temporary cash in the form of credit cards, loans, etc., is making it increasingly easy for us to forget exercising discipline or responsibility when it comes to finances. Financial risk management is blissfully forgotten until one comes face to face with a difficult financial situation.

        When it comes to investments, there are many mistakes which many of us are guilty of committing often. Some of these include not taking a credit life insurance, which is basically insurance against a loan. Credit life insurance protects your loved ones from the burden of repaying a loan, in case you pass away.

        The other mistake often committed is not securing the financial future of your family. Your responsibility towards your family does not stop at providing for them. It is also your duty to look after their needs if you were to not be around in the future. For this, a child or term insurance policy can provide much needed financial stability in case of uncertainty.

        The third oft made mistake is not planning for one’s retirement. Retirement is an inevitable stage of which comes in every employed individual’s life. For most people, retirement sets in around the age of 60 years and above. Retirement can often be an anxiety ridden time for those people who have not planned properly for it. It is a time when the individual has no source of regular income. To void this feeling, it is advised that one make a regular habit to save during their income earning years. In addition to that, several investment instruments like unit linked plans, dual benefit insurance policies, retirement policies, etc. have been have been designed exactly for this purpose.

        21st July 2017

      • HDFC Life Gets IRDAI’s Approval To File IPO Papers

        HDFC Life, the life insurance arm of HDFC, recently announced filing an draft with Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDAI) for an initial public offering. The insurer is also likely to receive the in-principle approval for its IPO from IRDAI in a short time.

        HDFC Life is comprised of two shareholders, HDFC & Standard Life Plc, both of which are expected to dilute stake through the IPO in the ratio of 3:1. In HDFC Life Insurance, HDFC owns 61.65% stake while Standard Life holds 35%. As for the merger with Max Life, HDFC Life Insurance did not get the approval not just from the shareholders but also from IRDAI, following which, it took the decision of launching their IPO for its life insurance business. The draft of the HDFC Life’s IPO related documents contains no mention of the Max Life merger in any capacity.

        20th July 2017

      • Bajaj Finserv Registers 22% Rise in Net Profit

        Bajaj Finserv recently announced an increase of 22% in their consolidated net profits for the first quarter of the ongoing financial year. The company’s profits stood at Rs.655 crore and have been driven by the growth in the NBFC sector and general insurance businesses. For the corresponding quarter last year, Bajaj Finserv recorded a profit of Rs.538 crore. The company’s asset under management (AUM) also recorded a growth of 39% and touched Rs.68,883 crore as on 30 June 2017.

        On the other hand, the company’s NBFC arm, Bajaj Finance, recorded an increase of 42% in the net profit which touched Rs.602 crore. The general insurance arm also witnesses a sharp hike in profits by 62% in the first quarter, reaching figures of Rs.213 crore. The company’s underwriting profit for the first quarter of the fiscal year stood at Rs.12 crore as compared to a loss of Rs.28 that was recorded in underwriting for the corresponding quarter last year. Bajaj Finserv recorded a 29% increase in their gross written premium which went up to Rs.1,973 crore in the first quarter. However, the life insurance segment of the company witnessed a drop in profits from Rs.244 crore in the first quarter of 2016-2017 to Rs.196 crore in the first quarter of the current fiscal. Renewal premium also went up by 11%, touching Rs.471 as compared to Rs.424 crore recorded for the previous year. Bajaj Finserv’s new business premium recorded an 18% growth and rose to Rs.683 crore as compared to Rs.580 crore recorded in the previous year.

        19th July 2017

      • Claim ratio of government schemes go up to 170% in FY-17

        The claims-to-premium ratio for the government term life insurance scheme, Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana (PMJJBY), reached 121% in 2016-17. For the Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana (PMSBY), the ratio went up to 170% in 2016-17.

        Both these schemes were released in May 2015 in order to offer reliable social security protection at an economical prices. For both the schemes, the premiums have to be paid by the end of May on a yearly basis.

        The high-claim ratios of these 2 schemes have resulted in a sense of pressure among other public as well as private insurers.

        17th July 2017

      • Income of life insurance companies on new business up by 6%

        The premium income of life insurance companies on new business rose by 6% to stand at Rs.33,156 crore in the first quarter of the current financial year. These figures are in comparison to the statistics last year.

        The first year premium on new policies in the private sector rose 12% to Rs.9.872 crore, as per data from the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority.

        Life Insurance Corporation witnessed a growth in new business income by 3% to stand at Rs.23,284 crore.

        Other insurers that observed marked growth in new business premium are ICICI Prudential with 57% growth, PNB Metlife with growth of 22%, HDFC Life with 15% growth, and Max Life Insurance with 16% rise in new business premium.

        SBI Life observed 3% decline in new business as well.

        14th July 2017

      • HDFC Life and Max are planning to build a new merger

        HDFC Life Insurance Co. Ltd and Max Life Insurance Co. Ltd have postponed the deadline for discussing the mergers until the 31st of this month. Both the private insurers are planning to have a new merger structure after the insurance regulator rejected the actual 3-step union.

        The board of HDFC Life will be meeting soon in order to evaluate this new structure. Under this new structure, HDFC Life and Max Life will collaborate and merge to create a new company known as HDFC Plus. This new company will then have a new subsidiary which will soon have the insurance business. This indicates that HDFC Plus will function as a holding company for the insurance business.

        13th July 2017

      • SBI Life Insurance all set to go public

        Shares of the State Bank of India (SBI) gained more than 1% on Tuesday after the directors' board approved the dilution of SBI's stakes in its life insurance wing. Once SBI Life Insurance is listed on exchanges it would be the second insurer in India to go public.

        The IRDAI had approved SBI Life's IPO application of Rs.7,000 crore last week. This is the largest share sale by a life insurance company in the country. The company is currently awaiting the final approval from Sebi.

        In spite of pending approvals, the board has made a decision to go ahead with the sale of equity shares of up to Rs.8 crore. The price will be fixed at a later date after consultation with parent SBI and BNP Paribas Cardiff, the company's foreign partner.

        SBI Life has currently engaged Citi, Axis Capital, BNP Paribas, and Kotak Investment Bank to manage the initial sale of shares.

        12th July 2017

      • SBI Life Receives Final Approval from SBI Central Board for IPO

        SBI Life Insurance will soon become the second insurer to go public after ICICI Prudential Life. SBI has approved the dilution of its stake in the life insurance company through a public offering and has now received a sectoral regulatory approval. The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) has recently approved a Rs.7,000 crore IPO application filed by SBI Life. SBI Life follows ICICI Prudential as the second largest private life insurer. SBI Life's net profit last year has shown a growth of 10.9% to Rs.954.65 crore from the previous year's Rs.861.03 crore in March this year.

        11th July 2017

      • Canara HSBC Oriental Bank of Commerce Life Insurance collaborates with Dhanlaxmi Bank to promote bancassurance

        Canara HSBC Oriental Bank of Commerce Life Insurance, a leading private life insurer, has entered into an agreement with Dhanlaxmi Bank, a bank based in Kerala in order to promote life insurance products.

        The bank will be a corporate agent for the insurance company for a period of 3 years. However, both the bank and the insurance company plan to have a healthy relationship for a long period.

        The plan to sell bancassurance products is being implemented in order to help both customers as well as the banks. It is a cost-efficient plan and has also proved to increase the sale of life insurance policies.

        11th July 2017

      • Penetration of insurance in India increases to 3.49%

        A report by reinsurer Swiss Re indicated that the insurance penetration in India has seen a growth from 3.40% to 3.49% in the financial year, 2016-17. Insurance penetration is measured as a percentage of premiums to gross domestic product, i.e., GDP.

        General insurance penetration stands at 0.77%, while life insurance penetration is at 2.72%.

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