A Guide to Health Insurance Portability

Published On Apr 07, 2021 5:30 AM By KANIKA WADHWA

When it comes to health insurance, you would always want the best for your health and financial interests. This can lead you to change your insurance company after a time. However, you can now do that without worrying about losing all the benefits that you had accrued under your old health insurance policy and company.
This is made possible by Health Insurance Portability. Earlier, a switch like this might have heavily cost you penalties and loss of benefits. However, that is not the case now and you can freely change your insurance company. Here is all about it.

What is Health Insurance Portability?

The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA), in 2011, introduced Health Insurance Portability. This function ensures that if an insured individual wants to change their health insurance company, they will not have to lose any benefits that they had accrued under their previous insurance company.

Health insurance policies are especially benefited from this function because they often have sensitive covers that have time constraints. It is best if the benefits are retained under any circumstances. The retention of all existing condition related credits as well as various exclusions and benefits is possible through health insurance portability.
The following are a few pointers to keep in mind if you want to avail of health insurance portability:

  • This facility is only available when the health insurance policy is in need of renewal. The application must be put in at least 45 days before the date of renewal.
  • The existing health insurance policy needs to be maintained without any breaks.
  • The subsequent terms and conditions, including the credits for the waiting period, are to be per the new insurance company chosen.

In case these conditions cannot be met, it depends on the insurance company whether to allow for health insurance portability or not. Otherwise, there are no generalised restrictions with regards to availing of health insurance portability.

Rights Available To Policyholders Under Health Insurance Portability

Following are the rights reserved for the insured individual, as dictated by the IRDA:

  • Any and all family, as well as health insurance policies, can avail of health insurance portability
  • Health insurance portability is valid for health insurance policies to and from any generalised or specialised health insurance company.
  • The waiting period credits during the shift and approval are to be paid by the new insurer.
  • The minimum insurance amount under the new company must be equal to the amount insured under the old health insurance company.

Rights Available To Insurers Under Health Insurance Portability

The following are the rights reserved for the insurer:

  • All applications for health insurance portability are treated as new by the insurance company and get a subsequent appraisal.
  • Applications go under a thorough check and everything, from health records, lifestyle habits and the usual parameters are checked.
  • A new premium is determined after the appraisal and the risk assessment.

After all of it, the insurer still holds the power to reject the application for health insurance portability. In such a case the insured individual has to choose to continue with their previous insurance company if they want.

Disclaimer: This article is issued in the general public interest and meant for general information purposes only. Readers are advised not to rely on the contents of the article as conclusive in nature and should research further or consult an expert in this regard.

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