Life Insurance

In the realm of financial planning, life insurance emerges as a cornerstone, providing security and peace of mind for countless families across India. As your trusted insurance aggregator, Digibima is dedicated to demystifying life insurance, ensuring that you are well-informed to make the best decisions for yourself and your loved ones. 

To make insurance more accessible to everyone, we want to show how easy it is to understand. Insurance might have its own terminology, but it is quite simple, and once you’re familiar with the terms, you will see how easy it is.

This comprehensive guide covers the essential features and terms of life insurance in India, tailored to help you navigate your insurance journey with confidence.

Understanding Life Insurance

In the simplest terms, life insurance is a promise between a person and an insurance company. It’s a promise by the insurer to provide a sum of money if the person passes away during the insured period. The amount goes to a designated beneficiary in exchange for certain premiums paid to the company. But there’s more to life insurance than its basic definition. Here are the key features and terms you need to know:

1. Types of Life Insurance Policies

  • Term Life Insurance: In this, the insurance only covers a specific period of time. If the insured dies within the term, the death benefit is paid to the nominee.
  • Whole Life Insurance: Provides coverage for the insured’s entire lifetime, with death benefits and sometimes cash values.
  • Endowment Plans: Apart from life coverage, these plans pay out the sum assured under both survival and death cases over a specified term.
  • Unit Linked Insurance Plans (ULIPs): A combination of investment and insurance, where a part of the premiums go into market investments, offering the potential for higher returns.
  • Money Back Policy: Periodic returns with insurance coverage, ideal for individuals seeking both savings and insurance.

2. Premium Payment Options

  • Regular Premium: Payable annually, semi-annually, quarterly, or monthly throughout the policy term.
  • Single Premium: Payable as a lump sum at the beginning of the policy term.
  • Limited Premium Payment Term: Premiums are payable for a shorter period than the policy term.

3. Sum Assured

This is the guaranteed amount that the beneficiary receives upon the death of the insured. Choosing the right sum assured is crucial, as it should cover your family’s financial needs and liabilities.

4. Policy Term

This is the period during which the life insurance company provides the coverage. These terms can massively vary, from a single year to an entire lifetime.

5. Riders

Additional benefits can be added to a basic life insurance policy, offering extra protection against specific risks like critical illness, accidental death, or disability.

6. Surrender Value

If you decide to terminate your policy before its maturity, the insurance company will pay you an amount known as the surrender value. Policies usually need to be in force for a minimum period to accumulate a surrender value.

7. Claim Settlement Ratio

An important metric indicating the percentage of claims settled by the insurer out of the total claims received in a year. A higher ratio suggests a trustworthy insurer.

8. Free Look Period

Insurance policies in India offer a free look period, usually 15 days, during which you can cancel the policy without penalty if you’re not satisfied with its terms.

9. Tax Benefits

Life insurance premiums are eligible for tax deductions under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act, 1961, while the policy proceeds are tax-free under Section 10(10D), subject to certain conditions.

Navigating the Application Process

Applying for life insurance involves several steps, including choosing the right type of policy, determining your coverage needs, and undergoing a medical examination if required. Honesty in disclosing your health history and financial status is crucial to avoid complications or claim rejections later on.

Making an Informed Decision

Choosing the right life insurance policy requires careful consideration of your financial situation, goals, and the needs of your dependents. Consider consulting with a Digibima advisor, who can provide personalized recommendations based on your unique circumstances.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q1: How much coverage do I need in my life insurance?

A: A common rule of thumb is to have coverage that’s 10-15 times your annual income, but this can vary based on your liabilities, dependents’ needs, and financial goals.

Q2: Can I have multiple life insurance policies?

A: Yes, you can have multiple policies based on your coverage needs. Each policy can serve different purposes, such as investment or protection.

Q3: What happens if I miss a premium payment?

A: Most policies have a grace period, typically 30 days. If the premium is not paid within this period, the policy may lapse, but reinstatement options are usually available.

Q4: How do I choose the right insurer?

A: Look for insurers with a high claim settlement ratio, reliable customer service, and a range of products that meet your needs.

Q5: Are life insurance payouts taxable?

A: In India, life insurance payouts are generally tax-free under Section 10(10D) of the Income Tax Act, 1961, subject to certain conditions.