A term insurance plan is a vital purchase for individuals who are the primary earning member of their families. The financial costs of running a family and taking care of each family member’s needs are very high. In case of an unfortunate event, your family should be able to fulfil their financial obligations and needs even in your absence. A term insurance plan can help immensely with that. The nominee/s or the beneficiary can receive the benefit amount only after making a claim. There are various term insurance claim types and it is important to know what distinguishes one from the other. Let’s take a look at them below.
What is term insurance?
First, let’s get a clear understanding of what term insurance means. Term insurance is one of the most popular life insurance plans. As the name suggests, a term plan is only valid for a particular number of years or a term period. This contrasts with whole life insurance, where the policy is valid as long as the insured is alive. The duration of a term insurance plan can be anywhere from 5 years to 40 years. Usually, most individuals opt for a term insurance plan that is valid until their retirement age. It is bought primarily to safeguard funds for major life events, such as children’s higher education, their marriage, and to financially protect against life’s uncertainties.
Now that you have got the question ‘What is term insurance?’ answered, let’s move on to the claims category.
What are the types of term insurance claims, and what are their features?
There are mainly three types of term insurance claims:
- Death benefit claim
The nominees are eligible to make this type of term insurance claim once the life assured has passed away. Though there are multiple conditions that decide whether the claim will be rejected or approved, the two major ones are:
– The policy should be active when the unfortunate event happens.
– The life assured should have passed away under the conditions prescribed in the policy.
For instance, the claim may be rejected if the policyholder passes away due to an accident caused as a result of alcohol abuse on their part. The amount that the nominees receive on approval of the claim is referred to as the sum assured. This amount may be provided to the nominees in the form of a lump sum payment at once, or it may be granted to them in smaller amounts over a period.
- Maturity benefit claim
While the previous type of term insurance claim was to be made by the nominees, the maturity benefit claim has to be made by the policyholder themselves. The maturity benefit claim essentially refers to the amount that the policyholder is eligible to receive if they have survived the completion of their policy term.
The maturity benefit claim feature is only applicable for those policyholders who have opted for the ‘return of premium’ type of plan.
So, let’s assume that Mr. Ramesh has bought an online term insurance plan with a duration of 35 years when he was 30 years old. Now, Mr. Ramesh is 65 years old and quite healthy. Since he has diligently paid premiums towards his term plan for the last 30 years, he will now make a maturity benefit claim as his plan has matured by now. Thus, he will now receive the premiums returned to him after the subtraction of the due charges.
- Rider benefit claim
Riders are additional coverage options that one can choose from at an extra cost to the premium to obtain maximum financial protection from the uncertainties of life. Riders are available with online term insurance plans as well as offline ones. Popular riders include accidental death benefit rider, critical illness benefit rider, accidental permanent total/partial disability rider, and so on.
One can make a claim on a rider only if a particular situation has arisen. If the policyholder has been diagnosed with a critical illness covered under the policy, they or their loved ones can raise a term insurance claim and receive the due compensation. If an accident has led to the permanent partial disablement of the policyholder, the claim under the same rider can be made to obtain financial compensation. One cannot make a claim for an accidental death under an accidental disability rider.
Thus, one should purchase riders depending on the risks they are under. If you feel that you have a genetic risk of a critical illness such as cancer, then you should opt for a critical illness benefit rider.
Now that you are aware of the different term insurance claim types, we hope you are more empowered to buy the right term insurance plan for yourself.