As per data collected by the IRDAI, the total number of individual life insurance policies issued in 2017-18 was 28.2 million. Out of this only 9 million policies were bought by women while men bought 19.1 million of these policies1. These include all sorts of insurance products including term insurance, traditional life insurance, unit-linked insurance plans, amongst several others. Although women continue to excel in every field in life and have become equals in contributing to the household due to financial independence, they continue to have inadequate or no life insurance coverage. However, as independent women who could be anything: single women, stay-at-home mothers, married women, working women, self-employed women, adequate life insurance is a very important asset1.
#1 Opt for Term Insurance Policies that Ensures Financial Stability of Your Household
If you are a sole breadwinner of your household, the importance of having an adequate term insurance policy cannot be highlighted enough. You need to ensure that your family continues to be financially stable, even when you are not around to help them. This is particularly important when you have any liabilities such as a mortgage or loan in your name. Term insurance policies are the first step to ensuring your secure assets. Additionally, even if you are in a dual-earning household, the loss of one earning parent can have serious implications on the finances of a family. While your employer may be providing you with a life insurance cover, in most cases this is not adequate to cover all prescribed expenses, and you should buy an individual term life insurance policy to secure the financial future of your family and loved ones. While the amount of life insurance coverage you will opt for depends on your lifestyle and other financial obligations, it is important to remember that often companies will offer more lucrative premium charges to working women as compared to their male counterparts.
For instance, the Express Term Life Plan is a pure non-linked and non-participating term life insurance plan. The plan has a death sum assured which will be paid as a lump sum either in the case of death or the diagnosis of a terminal illness. In addition to this, it also has an additional life cover option whereby you get a lump sum benefit on death or the diagnosis of a terminal illness. Additionally, in case of accidental total and permanent disability, all future premiums of the policy are also waived off. In this plan, you get the flexibility to choose the period of protection and the period of premium payment. You also have the option of returning the policy to the company within free look period of 15 days from the date of purchase in case you disagree with any terms or conditions.
#2. Ensure there is Critical Illness Cover in Your Term Insurance Policy
A key advantage of term life insurance policies is that you can use a combination of riders and add-ons to customize the policy as per your needs. The extent of female related diseases such as cervical cancer, breast cancer, sexual and reproductive health problems, maternal health, and sexually transmitted diseases are all on the rise. Several female-only cancers including breast, colon, endometrial, lung, cervical, skin and ovarian are also on the rise. Treatments for the same are extremely expensive and can take a toll on your and your family’s entire financial future. A combination of comprehensive health insurance and critical illness coverage can help you provide financial support in paying for treatments. Treatment for such illnesses is not only lengthy and expensive but involves several lifestyle modifications, including having to give up your work. Hence, women should ensure that they modify their term life insurance policy with riders and add-ons to customize them to provide adequate coverage against such problems.
#3. Focus on Premium Payment Rather than the Investment Benefits of Life Insurance
If you read any financial expert’s comments one thing that is repeated time and again is that anyone with dependents needs to have a term life insurance policy. Treating life insurance policy as an investment mechanism can get tricky and complicated, not to mention increase the rate of premium (fixed expense) every month. Focusing on purely the protection aspect of insurance policies helps provide coverage at affordable rates while also helping women have the peace of mind of securing the financial future of their loved ones no matter what happens.