Porting your health insurance policy is a process where you can switch to a new insurance provider while retaining your existing coverage.
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This article will provide you with all the steps involved in porting your health insurance policy and what you should be aware of when switching to a new provider.
Why should One Port from Their Health Insurance Provider?
You should port your health insurance policy if you are not satisfied with your existing health insurance plan.
And if you port your health insurance policy, you will be able to get better benefits that are not available with your current policy.
If you have been with the same insurer for a long time—there is a good chance there are better options available from other providers.
When you port your policy, it means that someone else is offering a better plan. You can switch to it.
However, before you switch, there are other factors you should consider before making your decision.
3 Things to Consider:
When people look for a new health insurance policy, they often look at the network hospitals.
But, it is not the only factor that matters. Here are the 3major factors you need to keep an eye on.
1. Medical History
Medical history is probably the first thing a healthcare provider will look for before approving and deciding the premium amount.
It happens either you are buying a new health insurance plan or porting your existing health plan.
If you have a pre-existing health condition that requires regular hospital visits, they may deny your porting request.
If your age is 45 or above, most new insurers will require you to undergo a medical check-up. People with a history of heart disease or renal failure, both of which have substantial recurring expenditures, are also considered for a medical check-up.
Many people ask us if there is an age limit for porting a health insurance policy to a different provider.
Well, there is no age limit for porting per se.
However, because health deteriorates with age, most insurers will hesitate to provide portability approval to senior citizens.
In addition, the new insurer will require additional medical testing and a declaration of pre-existing conditions during the porting process. They may exclude or limit coverage for specific diseases based on the findings.
3. Waiting Period
The waiting period—also known as the cooling period—is when your health plan will provide no cover, as specified in the policy document.
For example, if you buy a new insurance plan, it will have an initial waiting period of 30 days. The policy will provide no health cover during this period; other than the accidental cases.
There is a waiting period for specific illnesses as well.
The policyholder must wait for a specified period before becoming eligible to make claims for specified illnesses.
For example, conditions like osteoporosis and cataracts typically have a waiting period of a year before you can make a claim.
It could be a deal-breaker when it comes to buying a new policy or porting your existing one.
Do you have to serve another waiting period when you port? Your answers are below.
Benefits of Porting your Health Insurance Plan:
Porting your policy is one of the best things you can do to help save time and money on your health insurance policy.
Opens Up to Better Services
It is ideal if the reason for porting your health plan is due to the poor service of your insurance provider.
You can choose a better insurance provider by porting your health insurance plan. Choose a provider that would fit your needs best and is renowned for its high-quality services.
No Loss of the Current Policy Credits:
If the new insurer accepts your proposal, he is obligated to provide you with the credit you earned with the former insurance provider.
It includes the waiting period for pre-existing conditions and other specified illnesses or conditions.
When porting your health insurance, you do not need to serve any waiting period for pre-existing conditions declared in your previous policy. The same applies to maternity cover benefits provided by your prior insurer.
For example, you may have served a waiting period for a specific medical condition in your current health insurance plan.
Discontinuing the current policy and buying a new one will require you to serve the waiting period again. It is a significant period without risk cover. And any unfortunate health issue can make a dent in your finances and investments.
However, it is not an issue when you port your health plan. You do not have to serve any waiting period already counted in your current policy.
It is one of the advantages of porting your health insurance plan. The benefits offered by the existing insurer will remain added with the new policy benefits when you opt for a new policy plan.
Carry-Forward No Claim Bonus
No Claim Bonus (NCB) is one of the main reasons policyholders stay with the same insurance provider.
And they do so even if there are better policies available from a different insurance provider.
Fortunately, when you port your health insurance plan, you can carry forward the accumulated no claim bonus from your old policy to the new one.
It increases the sum insured of your policy and improves the benefits it provides.
Lower Policy Premium:
In India, the health insurance market is very competitive right now. Insurers are attempting to persuade policyholders to purchase their health insurance policy.
A competitive market is often a financially cheap market. If you can do simple research and shortlist a few health plans, you can find the right health insurance plan.
By porting your health plan, you can lower your policy premium while increasing the benefits.
Ability to Customize Policy
One of the most significant advantages of porting is the ability to tailor your new health insurance policy to your specific needs. You may want to change the nominees in your policy, or you may want to focus your policy on some health issues. While switching from your previous insurance to the new insurer, you can make any changes to your policy.
Procedure to Port your Health Insurance Policy:
Is porting a complicated process?
No! IRDA has made porting a simple process.
You should begin the porting process at least 45 days before the expiry of the current policy (and not before 60 days).
Steps to Port Your Health Insurance Policy:
- Step1: Notify your old insurer naming the company to which you want to shift the policy.
- Step2: Give a port request to the new provider of your choice—within 45 days before the current policy expiry.
- Step3: On receiving the request, the new provider will present you a proposal form, a portability form, and different health insurance products offered by them.
- Step4: Choose a product, fill out the proposal form, and submit it to the new insurer together with the portability form.
- Step5: The new insurer then contacts the old insurer or goes to the IRDA website to obtain information about your medical records, claim history, and so on.
- Step6: If your request is approved, your health coverage will begin with the new insurer.
- Step7: The new insurer has 15 days to approve or reject your request for portability; otherwise, you can consider your port request approved.
Documents Needed to Port Health Insurance Policy:
- Identity Proof
- Address Proof
- IRDA portability form
- Previous policy documents from your previous insurer
- Proposal form
- A declaration of the portability in case of a no-claim case
- In the case of claims made, additional documents such as the discharge summary and other related paperwork.
It is advisable to do complete research for the new plans before the due date.
Here is How to pick the ideal Mediclaim Policy that suits your need best.
Keep in mind the above points for a smooth porting procedure and better benefits.
The right health insurance plan is only a part of your risk management. Risk management, in turn, is only a part of your comprehensive financial plan.
If your needs are beyond porting a health insurance plan, you are in the right place at the right time.
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