Guiding consumers since 2009

Things you should keep your insurer updated on

By Staff Writer
The relationship you have with your life insurance provider is a partnership like any other that develops through communication and the sharing of important life changes and information.
 
Below are a few important changes that you should keep your insurer updated on:
 
1. Contact details
The correct contact details will make notifying you as to any fraudulent activity surrounding your account easier as your insurer will be able to contact you effectively and timeously.
 
2. Your bank account details
According to 1Life insurance, “if you’ve changed your bank account, then informing your insurer in time for the next deduction is paramount. This helps ensure that your policy doesn’t lapse by missing a payment from a returned debit order, and saves you unnecessary costs incurred via the bank transactions, in such instances. For example, consumers may have to pay over R100 for a returned debit order payment, creating unnecessary expenses.”
 
3. Your salary payment date
If you are in a position where your salary date changes, for example the company your work for changes their payment date or you start a new job, this is necessary so your insurer can arrange that your insurance premium is debited on the correct day.
 
“Your policy could lapse or even cancel should your account be debited well ahead of time or much later after your pay date and you don’t have enough funds in your account,” said 1Life.
 
4. Any change on your occupation
“One of the questions your insurance company will ask you when signing up for cover is your occupation,” said 1Life.
 
This is a necessary in determining your risk profile. This may affect the price of your monthly premiums but in the long run will be beneficial for you and your family.
 
5. If you have experienced a life changing event
Certain changes in your life will cause you to reassess your cover and insurance in order to manage and maintain ‘your growing family, protect your newly purchased dream home or new business in order to ensure you and your family are financially protected.’
 
6. You are taking up an extreme sport as a hobby
While this may seem like an insignificant detail, it is crucial information to share with your insurer so they are able to update and adjust your risk profile accordingly, advised 1Life.
 
7. You are leaving the country on a trip or relocating
Notifying your insurer about you overseas trips is a must.
 
“In some instances insurers may not provide cover for policyholders if they travel to countries, affected by war or those known to be home to highly infectious diseases. So before boarding your flight it is important to know you are covered to ensure your family is not left financially stranded should something happen to you while travelling,” emphasised 1Life.
 
8. Your medical status has changed
This is one of the most important notifications for your insurer as it is the biggest determining factor in terms of your price of your premiums.
 
While it is required of you to fully disclose your medical condition on policy inception, there are circumstances and events that could alter your physical condition e.g. smoking.
 
“Should these arise after purchasing your insurance policy [your insurer should be informed,] as it could affect you and your family at the very time you need it most,” said 1Life.
 
9. Your debt has increased
“Any changes to your financial status including increased debt that you incur, may leave your loved ones liable for that debt, should you pass away,” added 1Life.
 
It is therefore vital that you disclose all debt information and addition to your life insurer, to ensure that should anything happen to you, your family is covered.
 
10. You have changed your nominated beneficiary or their details have changed
In the event of anything happening to you, it is vital that your insurer is able to contact your beneficiary effectively to execute the pay-out.
 
Also there may have been a change to your beneficiary incurred by marriage or divorce, so informing your insurer in this case would be essential to make sure the right people are made provision for, suggested 1Life.
 
At the end of the day insurance is a must, as you don’t want to be saddled with a large bill should something incur.
 
It is also advisable that you review your policy bi annually to prevent you paying for things you may no longer need and ultimately protect your portfolio and pay out. 

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