With South Africa firmly in lockdown, there’s been a flood of questions from clients asking how or if we’ll be conducting new business during the 21-lockdown period. The good news is that we remain open for business. Although the process working remotely may take a bit longer at times, we are committed to guide all our clients through these challenging times.
Now more than ever you need to ensure that your portfolio is structured correctly and that you’re adequately covered for any uncertainties which may come our way. It’s always better to plan than to panic.
However, we’ll be doing things a little differently, factoring in current restrictions of human movement and other challenges that arise. On any new risk business or amendments to risk policies (life cover, disability, dread disease, funeral cover, educator benefits etc) most insurers have updated their underwriting practices. The COVID-19 virus is spreading globally, and South African statistics indicate that the infection rate is rising, as a result of exposure during travel and of local transmission. To mitigate the risk relating to clients who contract the virus, the underwriting practices have been updated by doing two things…
- asking clients to complete a declaration regarding their recent and proposed travel, and their potential exposure to the virus. If they’ve traveled outside of SA or intend to within the next two months, or if they’ve been exposed to the virus, cover will be postponed for three months,
- reviewing the approach for immune-compromised applicants who are at greater risk of contracting the virus and more likely to become severely ill as a result. Every applicant will be assessed on the basis of their particular illness, health history, current symptoms and state of health. Where the client is deemed to be high risk, the companies may load, exclude or postpone cover for three months.
We have received several questions from clients about how their insurance benefits would be affected should they become ill. Note that for all claims, normal investigative processes will be followed. All valid claims will be paid as usual. Always check WHERE you have risk cover, if the company is indeed stable enough to pay out claims and most importantly, HOW MUCH that company pays out on risk claims on an annual basis. Below is communication from Liberty re Covid-19 claims.
On a final note, if you’re still unsure about the progression of the disease, see below.
Stay home, look after yourself and remain positive. Things turn out the best for the people who make the best of the way things turn out.