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Managing Your Risk When You Need It Most: Five Important Questions Kiwis Are Asking

The last few weeks has seen our day to day lives turned upside down as Covid-19 has gone from a distant news headline to the new norm for all of us.

Richard Klipin, Chief Executive of the Financial Services Council, said “There’s no denying that this rapid change and new everyday reality can be scary. Living through a pandemic has added a new level of risk and uncertainty that we could never even dream of a few weeks ago.”

“Members of the FSC are receiving a huge spike of enquiries, interest and concern from New Zealanders about life insurance and how they can weather the storm and manage their risks,” continued Klipin.

Five important questions Kiwis are asking

  1. I currently have Life, Income, Health and Trauma insurance, do they cover Covid-19? Insurance products do not contain specific exclusions for pandemics like Covid-19. If you need to make a claim you will simply need to meet the eligibility requirements and terms and conditions for your type of cover.
  2. I have insurance but I’m having cashflow issues. Are there premium waivers/holidays for hardship cases in the insurance industry? Yes, across the life insurance industry there options to support you. Review your contract, contact your life insurer or contact your financial adviser. It is better to put your current cover on hold than to lose your current benefits.
  3. I want to buy new insurance cover to protect my family. Will I get cover if I contract Covid-19? Insurers are largely operating as normal for new polices. You will be offered insurance subject to your health status and an underwriting questionnaire. You must be honest when taking out new insurance to ensure the correct cover is put in place.
  4. I need to make a claim during lockdown. How do I do this? Claims will be handled in the usual way so contact your adviser or insurer to start your claim. Please be patient, as waiting times may be a little longer due to increased call volumes.
  5. I want to buy redundancy cover, can I do this? There are a range of insurance providers that will help you and insurers may vary cover during this pandemic. Talk to a provider or a financial adviser who will be work with you to find the best solution.

“If you have a specific question about your policy or just want some help to plan your finances, call your provider, talk to a financial adviser or go online to advice sites like Sorted. It’s never too late to ask.

“Our members are here to help, and last year they paid out almost $1.5 billion in claims to Kiwis in times of need. This year will be no different.

“Life insurers are robust and, by design, are built to support New Zealand and to protect you and your family against illness, accidents and other risks.” concluded Klipin.

Tips for getting on top of your finances

To help New Zealanders get on top of their finances, the FSC has developed five simple tips for Kiwis concerned about their financial wellbeing at this time:

  1. Use this time to you check your income, outgoings and budget
  2. If you have insurance, check and review your policy documents
  3. If you have concerns or questions talk to your insurer or financial adviser
  4. Use official and verified information sources only
  5. Be informed, be sensible, keep calm and stick to your long-term plan, we will get through this

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