Why you should get ready for a cut in group health benefits

It’s likely that your group health insurance benefits were curtailed a couple of years ago, with employers taking steps to cut costs. Come 1 January 2015, these may witness a further reduction with the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority ( Irda) releasing a new set of guidelines on pricing of risks for group products.

Says V. Jagannathan, Chairman and Managing Director, Star Health and Allied Insurance: “The new method of determining pricing might push up the prices,more so because the group policies are currently underpriced.” This will not only prompt the insurers to raise premium rates but, subsequently, employers may also cut down on the benefits or ask you to share a part of the premium cost. Says Arvind Laddha, CEO, Vantage Insurance Brokers: “In cases where the claims ratio is adverse and increase in premium is very high, corporates may be compelled to resort to such options.” If your employer introduces such restrictions, you should consider buying an independent or a top-up cover to bridge the gap.