One of the unexpected perks of your superannuation is the automatic life and income protection insurance that’s included with most accounts.
If you didn’t realise this, you’re not alone. Many people are unaware that they a) have insurance cover and, b) what it covers.
The insurance that comes with your super is an important safeguard for your future.
Ok, good, you’re still here.
Look, I get that insurance isn’t something necessarily at the top of your to-do list. For me, dealing with insurance slightly trumps going to the dentist on the list of things I don’t want to think about.
Thing is, it’s not actually that bad. Taking a few minutes to get your insurance arrangements set up properly means that, if you need it, you’ll have it.
Taking a step back: generally, your superannuation account has a few different types of insurance attached automatically. I could sugar coat it, but it’s there to provide for your future and family if you get sick, injured or die.
There are a few reasons that insurance through your super is useful. You receive a certain level of cover automatically, meaning you don’t have to get a health check to be eligible. Premiums are generally lower than buying cover through a retail provider because of the size of your superannuation fund. Because premiums are paid out of your super balance, you’re not out-of-pocket.
There are three types of insurance that are generally provided through superannuation:
Death: This pays out to your beneficiaries if you die or are diagnosed with a terminal illness.
Total and permanent disability (TPD): This pays a lump sum if you’re unlikely to ever be able to work again due to a disability.
Income protection (IP): Pays a monthly income while you’re unable to work due to illness or injury. IP has a maximum benefit period, such as two years.
Ok, enough preamble. Let’s look at what you can actually do to make the most of your insurance in super.
First off, I’m going to talk you through a few DIY options but if you have any questions about ways to optimise your insurance, you’re going to want to talk with a professional.
Our over-the-phone financial advice team can walk you through your options and give you personalised recommendations based on your individual needs. It’ll take about a half hour at no additional cost to you.
Check your cover
Knowing what kind of insurance coverage you have (if any!) is an important first step to managing it. Insurance is supposed to be there for you when you need it; it would be horrible to find out that it isn’t actually there!
If you’ve ever changed super funds, the type of insurance you receive (and the coverage level) has likely changed. If you have multiple funds, you might even have multiple insurance policies.
Knowing what insurance you have, where it is located and the process of making a claim can take a lot of stress away when you actually need to make a claim.
To find out what kind of insurance coverage you have through your super, you can look at the Insurance Fact Sheet. This will outline things like premiums, conditions and the process for making a claim.
Check your beneficiaries
Do you know what would happen to your super balance and insurance benefits if you pass away unexpectedly? Nominating a beneficiary is an important step in ensuring that your benefits go where you intend.
While there are rules about who counts as a beneficiary, taking the time to name beneficiaries can provide some peace of mind.
Know how to make a claim
Sorting through paperwork when you’re stressed is definitely not ideal. While we’re glad to help walk you through the process, knowing what you need to do in advance can help cut down processing time and ensure that everything goes through smoothly.
The steps generally start with contacting us, however having the required documents collated and ready to go can help speed things when you need it.
Update your insurance
If you’ve reviewed your situation and aren’t sure that you have the right level of coverage, it might be time to call a professional.
Good news: If you’re a member of our fund, you can get a personalised insurance plan from our financial advice team over-the-phone, at no additional cost!
If you want to just talk it out, give us a call on 1300 658 776 to get answers to your questions about the insurance you receive through super. You don’t have to go it alone; we’re here to help.