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A health insurance plan has become a common necessity in today’s inflationary age when medical expenses have become unaffordable. That is why many of you buy a health plan to secure your finances against any medical contingency which you might face. Many often than not, you buy health insurance without much consideration. Later you realise that there are other better plans out there in the market. If, however, you have been careful when selecting a plan, there might be other reasons which might make you think of switching to a new health insurance plan. But what about the renewal benefits which your current health plan gives? Can you retain them when you switch to another plan?
Yes, you can through the feature called porting of health insurance. Do you know what portability means?
Health insurance plans are flexible in nature. They allow you to opt for additional coverage features, the policy tenure, and also allow portability. Portability means changing your health plan with another plan from the same insurance company or from another insurance company. When you port, you get the renewal benefits of your existing health plan.
You can port your health insurance plan only at the time of renewing your health insurance policy. Only when the chosen term of the plan comes to an end is porting allowed. So, if you buy an annual plan, you can port when the plan completes one year. In case you have chosen a term of two or three years, porting is allowed only after the completion of the chosen term.
You have to make a request to your existing insurance company about your intention to port. Porting doesn’t happen automatically. This request should be made at least 45 days prior to your policy renewal date. In case the request is not submitted 45 days in advance, there might be problems with your porting request. Even the new insurer should be notified of your interest in porting your existing health insurance to their plan.
The pre-existing waiting period which has already elapsed in your existing health insurance policy would be given credit for in the new policy. So, if the waiting period in the existing plan is 4 years and you have continued the policy for 2 years before porting, the waiting period in the new policy would be reduced by 2 years. So, if the new policy’s waiting period is 3 years, the applicable period would be 1 year only.
Many health plans increase the sum insured if you don’t make a claim in a policy year. This increase is cumulative in nature and increases for every claim-free year and increases the sum insured. In case of health insurance portability, you might or might not get credit for the accumulated no claim bonus. Some companies allow you to retain your accumulated increase in sum insured while some don’t. So, check for this credit when porting.
So, keep these things in mind when you opt for health insurance portability.
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