COVID-19 positive? You're covered!
29 Jul 2020
Will I still have cover if I test positive for COVID-19 and will my premiums be hiked if I have the Coronavirus?
The first bit of good news is that if you are not planning on taking out new cover, COVID-19 will not affect your cover or its cost in any way, whether you have contracted the virus or not.
"If you already have a life or disability insurance policy, you will be covered for COVID infection and your premiums will not be adjusted on any existing insurance cover," assures Lisa Gibbon, Divisional Executive for Onboarding at Liberty.
It is also not necessary to disclose your COVID-19 status if you're not making any policy changes. "If a client is COVID positive now but for the time being does not intend to claim or take out another policy, there is no need to notify Liberty. For existing policyholders, it is not important to know their COVID status, unless they are submitting a claim," adds Liberty's Chief Medical Officer Dr Dominique Stott.
But what if you want to claim? In that case, depending on what your claim is for, getting your medical tests and documents together is vital, including COVID - 19 test results if you are claiming for an income protection benefit. For other types of claims this might not be required but the claims area will guide you as to what you need to submit. A claims assessor would look at the health problems caused by COVID and base the decision on whether the definition in the policy has been met," explains Stott.
Gibbon agrees. "Where an existing policyholder wants to take up additional cover and is going to be underwritten, please disclose all medical conditions, both current and previous, even if you have fully recovered. This would include COVID infections. For a new policy, the questions will be asked; and again, answer these as honestly as possible to make sure your policy benefits are secure," says Gibbon.
The questions are designed to determine your risk and to calculate your premium correctly. As we know by now, COVID infection unfortunately has a high mortality rate for higher age groups and people with high risk co-morbidities such as respiratory disease, hypertension, cancer and some auto-immune disorders. This information is critical in ensuring that you have the correct cover in place and that at claim stage, there are no issues pertaining to non-disclosure.
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