What is Term Insurance?
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What is Term Insurance?

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What is Term Insurance?

We live in a fast-paced world where deadlines and competition are at its peak, always. Apart from this, maintaining the good financial status and making sure that we are always at the top of the finances is also important. It is also important when you have a family to take care of and when you put their needs above yours. You cannot predict the future, but you can prepare for yourself for unfortunate incidents.

You can keep a tab on your investments, make sure that you have sufficient emergency funds and so on. One more thing that you can do is learn about different insurance policies that can help you keep your financial liabilities up to you, even after your demise. Yes, we are talking about term insurance plans.

In this article, we will discuss term insurance, what are they and how they work. Beyond that, we would also take you through its benefits.

Term Life Insurance Meaning

Term insurance is a pure life insurance product that aims at providing the financial aid to your family in your absence, in exchange of a premium. All you need to do is pay a premium that is affordable and get a life cover.

Although, you might not get any maturity benefit for surviving the term, but you would surely live a stress-free life without worrying about your family’s well-being after you. That being said, you should always take a term insurance policy only after you have researched all the policies and found the one that suits your requirements.

Before we move ahead and learn more about its benefits, let us first understand how term insurance actually works.

Basics of Term Insurance

If you are someone who wants to understand the basics of term insurance, we’ve got you covered. Refer to the infographic below:

Basics of Term Insurance

How does term insurance work?

Like we clearly mentioned before, term insurance provides financial security to your family in case you meet with an unfortunate event. But that is not it, you have to keep in mind a few things before you enroll for a term insurance plan.

You can avail term insurance from any insurance company that is trustworthy and has a good claim settlement ratio. Claim settlement ratio shows the amount of claims that are settled by an insurance company.

You, as a policyholder, pay a small premium against the sum assured that you opt-for to the insurance company. Sum assured is the amount you get as a life cover in case something happens to you before the policy matures.

There are a few steps that are followed by insurance companies in general which we will discuss in detail now.

Asses your and your family’s requirements

One of the first steps to apply for a term insurance plan is to understand your and your family’s requirement. You cannot pick any term insurance with any life cover. You need to make sure that the life cover is enough for your family to maintain the lifestyle after you.

As a rule of thumb, the idea is to get a life cover that is 10 times your annual salary. This way you know that the cover is enough to handle your family’s needs in your absence. Also, check if you have any EMIs or loans coming up and accordingly plan for a term insurance cover.

When you put all this in place, you will understand the ideal term insurance cover that you can then apply for.

Purchase the term insurance

Now that you have a clear understanding of your requirements, we suggest that you take the next step towards purchasing the policy. Here, you have to keep in mind that you choose the right policy and then fill out the forms correctly. You will get a proposal form that will consist of questions related to your medical and health conditions.

You need to ensure that you fill in every piece of information accurately because this information not only determines your premium but also your claim process settlement. The insurance company has the right to decline the claim for your family if they find out that the information was hidden.

Check your premium

You can check your premium online or when you apply for the term insurance plan after you have applied for one. The best way is to first check your premium online through online term insurance calculators and then see which one is better for you. Of course, these calculators don’t give you an exact quote, but help you understand a range you can expect it to be.

Rider options

Term insurance is good and it also offers good coverage if taken in time at an affordable pricing. However, you can enhance the protection further with rider insurance policies. These policies help you enhance your coverage at a nominal charge. For example, accidental death coverage can be one of the rider policies you can opt for so that you have additional protection for your family in case of accidental deaths. Unpredictability is the rule of nature, being ready should be your priority.

Assign a nominee

Last but not the least, in fact the most important, make sure that you assign a nominee for your policy. A nominee is someone who will receive the monetary benefits from your term plan. It should be immediate family member who can take care of your dependents.

Apply online

Online term insurance plans can be a better way to get a term insurance since it not only gives you the time to go through all policy related documents but also helps you reduce your premiums to a certain extent.

3 Important Reasons to Choose Term Insurance

Higher coverage

Because the premium on a term plan is lower when compared to traditional policies, you are able to afford a higher coverage for the same premium amount. For example, if you are in your 30s, a term plan with policy duration of 30 years for a cover of INR 1 crore is easily affordable. However, the premium on a traditional plan for INR 1 crore would be very high and probably beyond your financial capabilities.

Additional riders

You may include additional riders to procure comprehensive life coverage. You may opt for a critical illness rider that pays a certain amount in case you are diagnosed with the covered diseases. This benefit is over and above the regular benefits payable to your beneficiaries in case of an untoward circumstance, during the policy term.

Some of the other riders include the waiver of premium, disability coverage, and loss of employment. You must choose the riders as per your requirements because such benefits are available at an additional premium. It is recommended that you understand more about such riders while you understand term insurance meaning.

Unique features

Insurance companies are innovative and provide some very unique features with the term plans. An example is that insurers often offer a discount on the premium amount if you are a non-tobacco user. Moreover, you may not have to undergo a medical test when you choose to buy a term plan. Knowing what is term insurance and buying a policy was never easier than today.

Insurance is an important aspect of financial planning. It is an excellent way to financially protect your family against unfortunate events. Term plans are pure insurance policies that are affordable and simple. In case of an unforeseen incident during the policy term, the benefits are paid to your beneficiaries. In case of your survival, there are no maturity benefits. Now that you understand what is term plan, buy one today and protect your loved ones in your absence.

Types of Term Insurance Plan

1. Level Term Insurance Plan

In level term plan, the premiums to be paid for the entire policy term remains fixed. The premium and the sum assured agreed upon by you and the insurer will not change for the entire term.

2. Increasing Term Insurance Plan

In this type of term insurance plan, the death benefit or sum assured keeps increasing as the years go by. But the premium remains the same and doesn’t change. Certain policies also have a cap till which the sum assured will stop growing.

3.Decreasing Term Insurance Plan

In decreasing term plan, the sum assured keeps decreasing every year till the policy term ends. The premiums of this insurance policy are comparatively lower when compared to other plans.

4. Term Insurance Return of Premium(TROP)

If you buy a return of premium policy, you will get all of the premiums paid to the insurer by the end of the policy year. But this stands true only if you survive the policy term. So, in the event of your death, the sum assured would be given to your beneficiary but if you were to survive, then only the premiums would be returned to you.

5. Convertible Term Plans

In convertible term plans, you can convert your term plan to a different life insurance policy in the future. The type of insurance policy would be of your choice including whole life insurance, endowment plan, etc.

6. Term Plans with Riders

Riders are additional benefits that you can add to your term plan for better coverage. The different types of riders that you can add are critical illness, waiver of premium, accidental death, permanent disability and many more. To avail the benefit of term plans with riders, you have to pay an extra premium to your insurer.

FAQs for term insurance policy

1.What is term insurance definition?

Term insurance is a life insurance policy that aims at helping policyholders secure their family’s financial security in case of any unfortunate event or eventuality.

2.Do I get tax benefits for premium paid against term insurance life cover?

Yes, term insurance premiums can help you save taxes under section 80C and section 80D of Income Tax Act, 1961.

3.Do smokers pay higher premium for the same life cover as compared to their non-smoking peers?

Yes, smokers do pay higher premiums for the same life cover as compared to their non-smoking peers. In most cases, this is because smoking as a habit can cause many cascading health problems. The risk is also bigger than non-smoking people for the insurance companies to cover the smokers.

4.Can you calculate term insurance premiums online?

Yes, you can absolutely do that to understand how much premium you might have to pay for a specific sum assured. Use online term insurance calculators to get the approx. quote for the premium you might have to pay.

5.Should you opt for rider policies along with term insurance?

Yes, ideally you should. Most people feel that term insurance plan is enough. But if you need added or enhanced protection, riders can play an important role. Many rider policies also help you cover the issues that your base policy sometimes does not cover. Plus, it comes at a nominal premium.

- A Consumer Education Initiative series by Kotak Life

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