What to do if Health Insurance Policy Renewal Date is Missed?

Mr. Sharma, a 32 year old businessman was having a health insurance policy from past 4 years. He understood the importance of health insurance at an early stage of his life and took the decision of buying the best health insurance policy through proper analysis and understanding in his 20’s. In between these 4 years, Mr. Sharma enjoyed the benefits of health insurance policy and didn’t go through any hassle regarding his policy. Two days back when Mr.Sharma went for a hernia surgery in a non-network hospital and when he filed a claim for reimbursement of his expenses, the insurance company informed him that his policy has lapsed due to failure in payment of premium before the renewal date. This came as a big shock for Mr. Sharma as he had to pay the whole medical expenses from his own pocket.

This is not only the case of Mr. Sharma as many people miss their health insurance renewal date which leads to end of the coverage under the policy and the person becomes uninsured. Such gaps in the cover of health insurance can become a serious issue for you because medical emergencies can hit you at any point of your life without any notice.

Losses Because of Lapse of Health Insurance Policy

Lapse of a health insurance policy can lead to huge losses. You will be having no cover till the time you buy a new policy and the procedure to buy the new policy will be like the first time. You will have to go through the hassle for submitting documents, getting approval, medical test etc. In addition to these, following are the consequences which you will have to face due to the lapse of health insurance policy.

Loss of No Claim Bonus- You should have accumulated No Claim Bonus in your health insurance policy if you have been renewing your policy for a long period of time. Such No Claim Bonus leads to increase in the sum assured, but the lapse of policy can lead to loss of all the accumulated No Claim Bonus

Waiting period All the health insurance policy comes with a waiting period which needs to be completed before availing any benefit under the plan. On buying a new policy, the waiting period begins all over again which could become a big hurdle for you in future. So if you get hospitalized just after buying the new policy, then you will not get any benefit under it.

Cover for pre-existing diseases- You have to wait for 2-4 years for getting the cover on pre-existing diseases in your health insurance policy and if you have passed the specified years then you are entitled for coverage of pre-existing diseases. But if your policy lapses and you go for buying a new policy, then you will again have to wait for 2-4years for getting cover for pre-existing diseases.

How to avoid Lapse of Health Insurance Policy?

  • You can set a reminder for the insurance renewal date so that you will not miss the premium payment and the losses due to lapse of health insurance policy.
  • You can also go for ECS in which the premium amount is automatically deducted from your bank account before the renewal date.
  • Even if you have missed the premium payment before the due date, still you can pay the premium within the grace period which will allow you to continue your policy without any loss.
  • You can also opt for premium payment through ATMs which will save your time and money, thereby minimizing the chance of forgetting the premium payment before due date.
  • You can also avail the facility of availing reminders for premium payment through sms and e-mails.

Ways to Revive Your Health Insurance Policy

Ordinary Revival- You don’t have to go through any medical checkup if you revive your policy within six months from the date of lapse of the policy. You will just have to pay the outstanding premium along with the interest.

Revival on Non-Medical Ground- If you decide to revive your policy on non-medical ground, then the amount to be revived will be less than the promised limit of non-medical assurance, purchased by you.

Revival on Medical Grounds You can opt for revival on medical grounds only if you have failed in both ordinary revival and revival on non-medical ground.  The sum in this revival is decided only after going through a medical test.

It is better to follow the above mentioned steps of avoiding lapse of health insurance because revival is not an ideal deal. By avoiding lapse of your policy, you will be able to skip the hassle faced while reviving the policy and will be able to enjoy the benefits of your health insurance policy without any problem.

Harjot Singh Narula

Harjot Narula is founder and CEO of ComparePolicy.com, an IRDAI approved insurance web aggregator focussed on selling online insurance for companies. Harjot has more than a decade of experience in software development and has also spent 5 years in US working for the mortgage and risk management industry.

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