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The need-to-knows when replacing an insurance policy

As consumers we can all be impulsive, easily persuaded, and quick to make decisions – often without being properly informed.

Whether it’s life, travel, or funeral cover, replacing your insurance policy is no exception to this. It can be all too easy to rush into what you think on the surface is a better plan for you. However, choosing to replace an insurance policy can be risky, and there are a number of important things you should consider before jumping ship from your current policy:

Have you thought about:

  • Does the new, or existing policy have better terms and conditions for you? And which has a wider range of cover? Replacing it could either leave you worse or better off. For example, your existing policy may cover different types of conditions than your new policy, and vice versa (e.g. some trauma policies cover different conditions).
  • Changes in your health, lifestyle, occupation, or age may mean you aren’t covered under your new policy for benefits or events that may be covered under your existing policy. These changes could also make a new policy more expensive. For example, if you’ve developed a new medical condition since taking out your original policy, applying for a new policy might mean your premiums are higher, or you risk not being accepted. (Tip, if you would like to apply for a new policy, keep your old policy in force until you have been accepted and are happy with the terms offered).
  • Your new policy may have stand-down periods which means you aren’t covered for certain medical conditions or events for a period of time from the start date of your policy. For example, if you’ve had your existing policy for a while, you will have likely passed the stand down period. This means if something happened you would be covered by the terms of your policy. If you take out a new policy and something unexpected happens shortly after, you risk not being covered as you may be in a new stand down period.
  • If you keep your existing cover and take on additional cover under a new policy, you may pay more in premiums by having two policies in place.
  • It’s important to check through both policies to make sure you are happy with everything first before considering whether to cancel any existing cover.

If you have trouble finding this kind of information yourself, your current, and potential new insurance provider will be able help you. An insurance advisor is also a good person to go to for helpful advice.

Sometimes we really need to do our homework to work out what’s best for our unique lives.

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