Nicolette Dirk, finance writer
Long term risk product provider, Altrisk has added two new benefits to its range of insurance products — comprehensive cancer cover and a retrenchment benefit.
Dalene Allen, Altrisk’s underwriting director, said they created the cancer comprehensive cover in response to the alarming statistics that show that cancer is now the leading cause of critical illness claims.
According to the Cancer Association of South Africa (Cansa), the risk for women to develop cancer is one in eight, and for men it is one in six. With Atrisk’s comprehensive cover, you are able to apply for this benefit even if you already have critical illness cover with another insurer.
What does the benefit cover?
Altrisk provides complete cover for a wider range of cancers from Stage 0 (early cancer) to Stage 4.
You are also covered for the diagnosis and treatment of malignant tumours. To claim, the tumour can be invasive or non-invasive (non-invasive means it is a Stage 0 cancer).
There are also no exclusions. It is also offered as a standalone or add-on benefit. The maximum sum assured is up to R1 000 000.
There is a six month waiting period for early cancers once the policy starts. Once 100% of the benefit amount has been paid, the benefit will end.
Provision for unemployment
Altrisk’s retrenchment benefit pays out if you are involuntarily retrenched, due to your employer downsizing or facing closure. Policyholders can claim more than once and it is available as an ancillary benefit.
Premiums are not tax deductible and you get paid a lump sum. No medical underwriting is needed and the maximum cover amount is R150 000.This benefit is for salaried employees and isn’t available for the self-employed or an employee of a family-owned business who is a member of the same family.
If you want to claim, you must also have been employed on a permanent basis for at least two years. At least one year must have been with the employer from which you have been retrenched.
But Altrisk is not the only financial institution offering this type of cover. Standard Bank also offers cover for retrenchment for when you lose your job as a result of your employer facing adverse business conditions, introducing new technology or re-organising the business. You will receive a payment for up to six months income.
Old Mutual’s Lifestyle Adjustment Cover for retrenchment also pays up to six months income to give you the opportunity to find a new job and sort out your finances.
The importance of retrenchment cover
A statistics guide released by Old Mutual showed that of the R2.8 billion in claims made, less than 1% were for retrenchment.
Jaco Gouws, risk product manager at Old Mutual, said people tend to overlook the high likelihood that they could experience temporary or permanent disability, a severe illness such as cancer; or retrenchment.
He added that at age 20, you could potentially earn R10 000 per month. If you only consider a 6% inflation and no other factors such as bonuses or promotions, by the time you are 65, you would have earned just under R28 million.
“Add a further 2% and that number almost doubles to just over R50 million. When you consider how quick we are to insure cell phones and motor cars, why are we not insuring our most important asset – our own earning capacity,” said Gouws.
For more information on retrenchment insurance call Altrisk on 011 547 7000 or Old Mutual on 0860 60 60 67. You can also find out more about Standard Bank’s retrenchment cover on 0860 225 533.