Renew Health Insurance Policies before Deadlines

The coronavirus pandemic has brought the world to a standstill with many countries forced into lockdown. This has made it difficult for people to meet various deadlines and fulfil statutory requirements. To resolve this, the Government of India has given taxpayers an extension to complete their obligations.

Extended deadline to file income tax returns (ITRs)

At a press conference held on May 13, 2020, the Ministry of Finance had extended the deadline for filing of ITRs for FY 2019–20 to November 30, 2020. Generally, individuals are required to file their ITRs by July 31, 2020.

This extension is also applicable to income taxpayers who need to file returns by October 31, 2020. Moreover, the date for audit is extended from September 30, 2020 to October 31, 2020.

When to renew the health insurance policy

You must renew your health insurance plan on or before its due date. If you miss the deadline, the policy benefits expire, and you will not have any coverage. Most insurers offer a grace period for health insurance renewal. However, you lose the insurance cover and cannot file any claim during this period. Some insurers may also ask you to undergo a medical check-up if you renew the plan during this time.

If your medical insurance was due for renewal between March 25, 2020, and May 3, 2020, the Ministry of Finance has extended the period until May 15, 2020 due to the lockdown.

Importance of the extension

If you failed to renew the expired cashless health insurance policy by May 15, 2020, it is considered invalid. This means you now have to buy a new policy, for which the insurer may require you to undergo a complete health check-up before issuance. Additionally, you will lose the accumulated No Claim Bonus (NCB) and will have to complete the waiting period for pre-existing conditions.

Steps to renew a health insurance policy

You can renew your mediclaim policy through the medical insurance provider’s website by following a few simple steps. These include:

  • Input the policy number, birth date, and mobile number
  • Pay the premium digitally, either through Internet banking or a credit card
  • Receive a confirmation through an e-mail once the payment is successful

Income tax benefits on health insurance

Apart from protecting your finances in case of a medical emergency, a health insurance provides tax benefits. The premium paid on this policy is eligible for a tax deduction under Section 80D of the Income Tax Act, 1961.

Before you renew your policy, check the terms and conditions. Also, research about all other available options and assess your requirements to find the most suitable plan.