News . Views . Reviews

United India inches closer to win Goa's Health scheme bid

Apr 26, 2016

The United India Insurance company has come quite close to win the bid for Goa government's Health Insurance scheme named Din Dayal Swasthya Seva Yojana.

"United India Insurance Company is the lowest financial bidder in comparison to other rivals. The company has a bid of Rs 3263.25 per family," State Health Minister Francis D'Souza said as the Health department opened financial bids for the flagship scheme.

The department will now send the comparative statement to the state government for finalisation, he said.

D'Souza said unlike the health insurance schemes in the past, the upgraded one (scheme) would provide quality medical care, hospitalisation and surgery both in government and private hospitals.

"The scheme will cover 15 lakh population of Goa, which includes three lakh families from the State," he said.

"Before finalising the scheme, the government is working out the modalities including effective benefit of this scheme to the people," he added.

Goa government in the proposal inviting bidders for the scheme had said the insurance cover will be up to Rs 2.5 lakh per annum for a family of three or less members and up to Rs 4 lakh for a family of four and more.

Source: Business Standard

Why One Must Go for Fire Cover, Public Liability

Apr 18, 2016

We all are well prepared to get our vehicle insurance renewed every year. The renewals or fresh vehicle insurance are being done by most of us just to avoid penalties being imposed by the traffic authorities. What if we are hurt or lose our lives due to accidental fires whether in temples or educational institutions or residential complexes or anywhere else? The only alternative is to take adequate life coverage from the insurance companies.

Insurance enables risk transfer from the beneficiary to the insurance company, which undertakes to indemnify the insured for the financial loss suffered due to accidental death, loss of limb.

Generally people know that the fire insurance covers only fire whereas this is not the case. The insurance companies offer ‘Standard Fire & Special Perils Policy’ and just Fire Insurance. This policy not only includes accidental fire but also covers lightening, explosion and implosion, impact damage, aircraft damage, RSMD (riot, strike, malicious and terrorism damage), subsidence and landslide including rock slide, missile testing operations, leakage from automatic sprinkler installations, bush fire. All these coverage are in built. Add on covers like STFI (storm, cyclone, typhoon, tempest, hurricane, tornado, flood and inundation), earthquake etc. can be taken by paying additional premium apart from the base premium.

For dwelling units, long-term policies can be taken up to ten years. There are two methods for availing long-term policies.

Method A: Premium will be charged in full without any discount. However, sum insured under this policy shall be deemed to have increased by 10% of the original sum insured at the end of every 12 months period.

Method B: There shall not be any automatic increase in sum insured as in Method A. However, appropriate discounts shall be allowable on applicable gross premium up to 50%.

Public Liability: Since it is for the building or canopy, insurance companies will compensate for the building or canopy and the contents that have been lost, and not for the human lives. Human lives can be covered only after having an additional Public Liability policy. It will indemnify the insured against all the sums which the insured shall become legally liable to pay in the event of: - Accidental bodily injury to any person and it would include fatal injuries too. Even nervous shock, which is not in the nature of a physical injury, is with in the expression. Illness is also embraced by the expression. Some policies make specific reference to these types of injuries to make position abundantly clear.

Policies issued under this agreement, all sums which the insured becomes legally liable to pay as damages to third party in respect of accidental death / bodily injury / and loss of or damage to property arising out of claims against the insured during the policy period including legal costs and expenses incurred with prior consent of insurers, subject always to the limits of indemnity and other terms, conditions and exceptions of the policy. Premium will depend on the indemnity taken by the insured.

Personal Accident: This policy is suitable for individuals like professionals, executives, administrative staff etc. Policy pays the sum insured in the event of unfortunate death/ permanent total or partial disability due to accident.

Addition to this compensation is given by the insurer @ 1% of sum insured (Max Rs 5,000) for every week of temporary total disability.

This policy is given along with Road Safety Policy, which provides medical expenses coverage due to accident up to Rs 1 lakh. Premiums are very small. Total combo premium is approximately Rs 1,100.00 + applicable taxes per annum per employee (sum assured: Rs 6 lakh).

To sum up, in my opinion institutional insurance must be in combination of ‘Standard Fire and Special Perils Policy’ and ‘Public Liability Policy” in order to cover un-named human lives too. Whereas in residential buildings it must be in combination of ‘Long-term Policy for Dwellings’ and ‘Personal Accident Policy’ in order to cover family members lives by name.

(The writer is a certified professional financial advisor & senior insurance consultant)

Source: The New Indian Express

General insurance industry misses Rs 1 lakh-crore premium target; garners Rs 96,400 crore in FY16

Apr 17, 2016

The general insurance industry has missed the ambitious target of crossing the Rs 1 lakh-crore mark in premium collection by a small margin at Rs 96,401 crore, up almost 14% in the just concluded fiscal.

In FY15, the general insurance industry had clocked a premium income of Rs 84,715 crore.

The growth this fiscal was driven by motor and health insurance segments, which are traditionally the largest segments of the industry.

The four public sector players notched up a premium income of Rs 47,717 crore while 18 private players garnered Rs 39,701 crore and the two specialised operators netted Rs 4,830 crore and health insurers added up with Rs 4,153 crore, a General Insurance Council data showed.

The general insurance industry has 30 players with four state- run players, one state-owned reinsurer GIC Re, two specialised government-run entities -- Export Credit Guarantee Corporation (ECGC) and Agricultural Insurance Company -- five standalone health insurers and 18 private players.

"We have achieved total premium of Rs 96,400 crore in FY16, falling short of our ambitious target of Rs 1 lakh crore by a small margin," General Insurance Council general secretary R Chandrasekaran said.

Blaming the late arrival of the relaxed norms on credit line insurance from the regulator Irdai, which issued the norms in February. He, however, maintained that taking into account inward (reinsurance) business, the industry has already crossed gross written premium of Rs 1 lakh crore-mark.

The industry has done well in 2015-16 with a growth of 13.8%, which is much higher than the previous year's 10%, New India Assurance Chairman and Managing Director G Srinivasan said.

"We are targeting a total premium collection at Rs 20,500 crore in the current fiscal as against Rs 18,300 crore in FY16," he added.

New India saw growth in all the segments -- retail sector (including a personal line of business comprising health and motor insurance) has grown much faster than the corporate segments like fire & engineering and marine in 2015-16, Srinivasan added.

At New India, which is the largest player, the ratio between retail and corporate conventional products stands at 65:35, he said.

Srinivasan expressed hope that the current fiscal will be better than the last year due to increase in premia in segments, like fire and engineering and third-party motor cover.

Engineering and fire are also likely to perform better in the fiscal due to new projects coming up and the revival of the country's economy, he added.

"Secondly, we believe FY17 should be a catastrophe-free year as we had to pay Rs 500 crore in claims due to the Chennai floods last year," he said.

The ‘Jan Suraksha Bima Yojana’ has contributed to the growth of personal accident insurance at New India, apart from creating awareness in the industry, he said.

National Insurance has closed the year with a total premium of Rs 12,000 crore and is targeting to close the current fiscal at Rs 14,000 crore, National Insurance chairman and managing director K Sanath Kumar said.

He also said the growth has been driven mostly by health and motor segments.

ICICI Lombard chief of underwriting and claims Sanjay Datta said: "In case the infrastructure sector does well, then the engineering segment is set to see a better growth in the current fiscal."

"Yes, ‘Jan Suraksha Bima Yojana’ has picked up well. Though the low-ticket segment didn't help much in getting premium income, still it did help get bigger coverage in the personal accident line," he said.

Source: DNA

Rs 5 Lakh Free Insurance With LPG Cylinder. Did You Know?

Apr 17, 2016

You buy different insurance covers to protect against various risks. But are you aware of the free insurance covers that you get with your LPG cylinder or an air ticket that you buy? Here are some of the insurance covers that you get for free:

Insurance cover for LPG users: All registered LPG (liquefied petroleum gas) or piped cooking gas consumers are covered for any mishap caused due to LPG cylinders at their registered address. The cost of insurance is borne by oil marketing companies. According to the website of Bharatgas, the distributor of LPG for Bharat Petroleum, a personal accident cover of Rs 5 lakh per person in case of death is provided. In case of an accident, medical expenses of Rs 15 lakh per event, with a maximum of Rs 1 lakh per person are covered.

The policy also covers the damage caused to the registered premises of consumers for a maximum sum of Rs 1 lakh per event. Piped gas consumers are also insured under this policy.

Insurance with bank deposits: Your money deposited in a bank account - both principal and interest - is insured up to Rs 1 lakh for any default by the bank. It covers all deposits such as savings, fixed and recurring.

However, for claim purpose, all the deposits made under these accounts will be added and a maximum of Rs 1 lakh cover will be given to each depositor. Even if you have deposited in different branch of the same bank, you will get a maximum cover of Rs 1 lakh.

However, banks accounts with different banks are insured separately with a maximum cover of Rs 1 lakh each.

Corporate Deposit Insurance: As per the new Companies Act, any company raising money via deposits will have to provide an insurance cover of up to Rs 20,000 to every investor against default of payment.

Both the principal and interest earned on a company deposit are insured under this cover. "But currently there is no product available in the market which provides corporate deposit insurance. There are no regulations from Insurance Regulator and Development Authority of India (IRDA) which allow insurance companies to provide insurance products for corporate deposit," says Sanjay Datta, chief underwriting and claims, ICICI Lombard General Insurance Company.

Baggage insurance with air ticket: In case of domestic travel, airlines provide an insurance cover of Rs 20 lakh each person in case of death and bodily injury while Rs 20,000 in case of loss of baggage.

Source: NDTV Profit

Insurance Company Told to Cover Tsunami Damages

Apr 07, 2016

The Madras High Court has overruled an insurance company that had denied the claims of a shipping company for losses caused by a tsunami to the shipping company’s barges.

SBK Shipping Private Limited, Cuddalore Harbour entered into a insurance contract with United India Insurance Company Limited, insuring its four barges. Clause IV of the contract states that the insurance covers loss or damage to the subject matter caused by perils of the seas, rivers, lakes or other navigable waters. It also covers loss caused by other actions such as fire, violent threat and piracy where as Clause V of the contract states that the insurance shall not cover loss, damage, liability or expenses caused by earthquake or volcanic eruption.

United India Insurance Company denied the claims for damage of barges suffered by SBK Shipping Private Limited stating the losses fall under the category ‘Perils of the Sea’ and since an earthquake (not the tsunami) was the ‘proximate cause’ (as distinct from ‘remote cause’), the losses suffered by the shipping company are excluded from insurance claims.

The division bench comprising Justice R Sudhakar and Justice S Vaidyanathan dismissed United India Insurance Company’s appeal saying, “We are unable to accept the argument of the Insurance company that the earthquake is the proximate cause for the damage of the vessel. On the contrary, it is the remote cause. If the tsunami, a peril of the sea, is the direct cause for the damage, there is no need to embark on further enquiry as to what is the proximate cause of tsunami. The proximity is in relation to the damage and if the claim answers the same it is maintainable,” the judges said.

“Scientifically it is stated that the earthquake was the cause of the tsunami, but for persons who suffered the wrath of the tsunami in TN, the earthquake is virtually a remote cause. The proximate cause for the damage caused to the property is giant tidal waves of tsunami, a ‘peril of the sea’ and not the earthquake,” the judges stated.

Source: The New Indian Express

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