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Thursday, October 29, 2020

Irdai okays renewal of Covid policies

Irdai said Corona Kavach and Corona Rakshak policies of any tenure will be allowed to be renewed for further terms of three-and-a-half months, six-and-a-half months or nine-and-a-half months, as per the option exercised by policyholder.

Written by George Mathew | Mumbai | Updated: October 14, 2020 9:27:00 am
The policy, which will be available for those in the age group of 18-65 years, will be for a term of 5 to 40 years with a maximum maturity age of 70 years. (File)

With the Covid pandemic not showing any sign of abating in the near future, insurance regulator Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (Irdai) has allowed renewal, migration and portability of Covid-specific standard health products — Corona Rakshak, Corona Kavach and Group Corona Kavach policies.

Irdai said Corona Kavach and Corona Rakshak policies of any tenure will be allowed to be renewed for further terms of three-and-a-half months, six-and-a-half months or nine-and-a-half months, as per the option exercised by policyholder. The renewal should be subject to the underwriting policy of the insurer, it said.

“General and health insurers are permitted to allow portability of Corona Kavach (individual) policy from one insurer to another. If an insurer is found deficient in servicing their cu1stomers, they can switch over to another insurer,” said an official.

Gurdeep Singh Batra, head-retail underwriting, Bajaj Allianz General Insurance, said, “The Covid-19 vaccine is yet to come out and the purpose of these policies is to mainly cover the treatment costs against immediate health risks that people face due to the pandemic.” Close to 30 lakh lives have been covered under Covid polices since their launch in July 2020. However, renewals should be done before the expiry of the existing policy contract. When policy is renewed, an additional waiting period of 15 days should not be imposed and the coverage should be continued seamlessly, Irdai said in a circular to insurance firms.

During renewal, sum insured should be allowed to be changed by the policyholder. “For any increase in the sum insured, the waiting period should start afresh only for the enhanced portion of the sum insured, the regulator has said. “Corona Kavach and Corona Rakshak policies are permitted to be renewed till March 31, 2021 complying with clause 5 of Guidelines on introduction of short term health insurance policies providing coverage for Covid-19 disease,” the regulator said. In respect of Corona Kavach individual policies, insurers have the choice to offer migration to any other indemnity based health insurance product offered by them as per the option exercised by the policyholder.

Explained

Gains for the insured

When migration is allowed, the accrued gains of waiting period served in the existing Corona Kavach policy (individual or group) should be protected in respect of coverage for Covid-19, in the migrated policy, said Irdai.

For Corona Kavach Group policies, insurers have the choice to provide migration to the members insured to any other individual indemnity based health policy at the point of exit of the member insured from the group policy or the cessation of coverage of the underlying group policy, Irdai said.

When migration is allowed, the accrued gains of waiting period served in the existing Corona Kavach policy (individual or group) should be protected in respect of coverage for Covid-19, in the migrated policy, it said. The accrued gains of waiting period served in the existing Corona Kavach policy should be protected in respect of coverage of Covid-19, by the porting-in insurer.

When migration or portability from the Corona Kavach policy is allowed by the insurers, such migration or portability to any other comprehensive health insurance policy should be allowed, till the end of policy period of the existing Corona Kavach policy.

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