Little India Directory has verified that the author is a licensed insurance agent in Singapore. All opinions contained herein are those of the author and not of Little India Directory.
Insurance Agent | May 16, 2016
This is the first in a series of insurance and financial articles that I will be providing. These are my personal opinions, experiences and advice in the financial and insurance fields in Singapore. You should not take what I write online as your sole source of advice – there are plenty of financial advisors, financial consultants and relationship managers in Singapore to follow up with for that.
You may even know me as one of them – I sell endowment plans, ILPs, and life, term and medical insurances amongst others. If you cut through these titles though, I am simply a Tied insurance agent with a renowned insurance firm in Singapore for 7 years now.
There are a number of reasons for not sharing my identity. For starters, I do not wish to associate my company with my opinions. Also, for future articles, the opinions shared here may belong to more than one of us, and it helps to not peg it to one person. While the title – “Secret Confessions” – suggests stealth, I can easily be contacted via email@example.com for advice if you need any.
A simple Google search will reveal a lot of people giving “free” financial information over the Internet – a plethora of know-it-alls sharing advice ranging from stocks to life insurance and unit trusts and how to choose insurance policies in Singapore.
My opinion is that only a few of these are legally and properly trained to do so. The ONLY financial blog that I personally advocate, which I consider the ‘Bhagavad Gita of financial blogs in Singapore, and the one that I read daily without fail is MOTLEY FOOL SINGAPORE. For other blogs out there, I suggest reading them with more than just a pinch of salt.
The most important policy in Singapore ever is medical insurance because this is the policy that you are most likely to make a claim for first. The medical insurance portion has two components – Part A is fully paid by Medisave if you haven’t exceeded the $800 per year annual limit deductible from Medisave, which is the likely case if you are 60 years old and above. The second portion or Part B is called the rider, which is fully payable by cash. The rider covers the co-insurance and co-deductible of the bill. Basically the first $1000 to $4000 of the bill that your medical insurance wouldn’t cover otherwise.
A lot of my clients, especially my younger clients and prospects, don’t see the value of the rider. The rider is extremely important as it also covers minor things such as A&E bills. As this series is about my experiences as an agent, here is a true story that I hope will spur you to immediately review your medical insurance policy.
I met a young Malay lady when I was in my 2nd year in the insurance industry. She was a referral and she worked part time. Her monthly income was around $1300 a month, and at that time, the cost of the rider was between $23- $26 dollars a month. The rider I proposed to her would have covered private and government hospitals.
I explained the purpose of the rider to her, and like most, she didn’t feel that she would make a claim anytime soon – or ever for that matter. She insisted on only taking the basic medical policy, which was paid via Medisave. Her case was issued within two weeks as she did not have any pre-existing conditions and was thus a pretty straightforward contact.
Barely a week after her policy had been fully settled and had been hand delivered to her, she called to inform me that someone had accidentally slammed the car door on her hand and she needed to be warded. Her medical bill came up to $2000 and was within the co-deductible. However, since she didn’t have the rider that covers the co-deductible and co-insurance, this bill wasn’t covered.
What followed were frequent calls by this client to my company’s helpline demanding that the claims department review her claim and pay it out, despite the fact that she didn’t have the rider.
I have tons of such cases about clients not being able to make a successful medical claim because they refused to purchase the rider and the bills fell within the co-insurance and co-deductible of their medical insurance. If you are reading this and you think you’re superhuman and aren’t ever going to get hospitalized, I present Murphy’s Law where whatever can go wrong, will go wrong! Or you may remember Tom Hanks in the 1996 award-winning movie, Forrest Gump (God I am old!). During his long run to nowhere, a car sped past him and a pile of mud hit both his face and the guy next to him. The epic words out of his mouth – ‘Shit Happens’ went on to make the guy next to him rich as he printed shirts with that quote. If only life was like the movies.. well, it is a bit because the part about ‘shit happens’ (pardon my French) is true and you should be prepared for it.
If you enjoyed reading this article and wondering how to choose medical insurance, my advice to you if you’re getting medical insurance is – do not stinge on the rider. If you want it and you need a reliable, entertaining agent to sell it to you, you can get in touch with me via email firstname.lastname@example.org .
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