Tips for Buying a Health Insurance for Freelancers
With freelance professionals and gig workers growing in numbers, more and more people are drawn towards them. As a self-employed person, you become your boss. You have the freedom to take up projects at your will. However, self-employment comes with some drawbacks. These include lack of job security and absence of employer-sponsored health insurance, among others.
Amongst these, the absence of health insurance is a crucial factor as it can heavily burden you financially during a health crisis. For example, you could lose out on lucrative projects if you are unable to work on them due to poor health. Additionally, you would also have to face steep healthcare expenses to get you better. Thus, it becomes essential to prepare yourself with quality health insurance to ward off any financial implications arising due to ill-health.
This article will help you wade past any confusion regarding the health insurance buying process and guide you towards buying the best healthcare insurance for yourself as a freelancer.
Tips to Buy a Health Insurance for a Freelancer
Start your Health Insurance Policy at the earliest
Insurance companies decide your premium primarily based on your age, existing health conditions, and past health records. Young age typically means being in good health with minimal or no health issues is high. It also means receiving the benefit of a significantly low premium with extensive coverage compared to a policy premium at an older age.
Additional Read: When is the Right Time to Buy Health Insurance?
Assess your future healthcare needs to determine coverage extent
Nobody knows you like yourself — the state of your health and business. Hence, it would help if you accordingly covered your health. To determine your necessary health coverage, you must consider:
- Existing health issues
- Present health condition and fitness levels
- Lifestyle habits – Do you smoke or drink? How are your eating habits?
- Current work requirements – Does your job make you physically exhausted? Do you have a desk job that requires you to sit for long hours in front of the screen?
Perform a Comparative Analysis between Policies
After deciding to invest in a health insurance policy, you may come across several policy options suited to your profile. Each one would have unique yet multiple features in them. Poring through the data could overwhelm you.
To arrive at a buying decision, create a comparison table and jot down information from different policies to analyse the features. You may want to include data categories such as policy features, eligibility criteria, premium rates, etc. Conducting this exercise may help clarify the right policy you need to purchase.
Additional Read: What is Life Insurance? What are its Coverages?
Pick a Policy with Affordable and Steady Premium Rate
Some policies have fluctuating premium rates. For instance, premium rates may be low initially, but you may notice premium rates hiking sharply after a few years. Opt for policies with a steady and stable premium rate to avoid disturbing your financial planning.
You may be tempted to go for policies that offer comprehensive coverage with added riders and benefits. But such policies typically come with higher premium costs. To look for a policy that fits your budget, you may want to assess your business income. For instance, consider your current capabilities, market conditions, and current trends to estimate how your business would fare in the future. Then, seek an affordable yet comprehensive policy that you can pay comfortably for several years to come.
Opt for Policies that offer Discount Schemes
Some insurance policies come with valuable benefits. For example, a policy may offer you a discount on the premium in the following year if you do not make policy claims in the current year. If you are unsure of your future business performance or growth, having such a feature can be a big win for you. That's because every additional saving you make or discount you receive as a freelancer can be an added benefit.
Additional Read: An Overview of Parents Health Insurance in India
Pick Family or Group Insurance Policy over Individual Policy
As you are self-employed, you do not have the privilege of an employer-sponsored health insurance policy. This leaves you with the option of either covering your health individually or purchasing a health insurance policy that covers you along with your family or some other group. Group or family policies usually come with a lower premium than individual policies. Hence, you can opt for a family health plan for your family. Similarly, consider purchasing a group policy covering your employees if you run a team or office.
Keep the Necessary Documentation Handy
Buying a health insurance policy is generally assumed to be tedious and cumbersome. But, this is incorrect. Today, with eKYC, the process is quick and straightforward if you have your documentation ready. Additionally, you may need to submit medical reports or undergo some tests as required by your insurer.
Additional Reads: Is COVID-19 covered under Health Insurance in India?
Health insurance is necessary irrespective of whether you are an employee or a freelancer. It allows you to avail quality healthcare facilities and services without the worry of breaking your investments or savings. Thanks to digitisation, you can easily apply online to avail a policy of your choice quickly and at your convenience.
Disclaimer – ICICI Securities Ltd. ( I-Sec). Registered office of I-Sec is at ICICI Securities Ltd. - ICICI Venture House, Appasaheb Marathe Marg, Prabhadevi, Mumbai - 400 025, India, Tel No : 022 - 6807 7100. I-Sec acts as a Composite Corporate agent having registration number –CA0113. Please note, Insurance related services are not Exchange traded products and I-Sec is acting as a corporate agent to solicit these products. All disputes with respect to the distribution activity, would not have access to Exchange investor redressal forum or Arbitration mechanism. The contents herein above shall not be considered as an invitation or persuasion to trade or invest. I-Sec and affiliates accept no liabilities for any loss or damage of any kind arising out of any actions taken in reliance thereon. Investments in securities market are subject to market risks, read all the related documents carefully before investing. Insurance is the subject matter of the solicitation. The advertisement contains only an indication of the cover offered. For more details on risk factors, terms, conditions and exclusions, please read the sales brochure carefully before concluding a sale. The contents herein mentioned are solely for informational and educational purpose.