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| LIFE INSURANCE IN INDIA
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Life insurance is a contract between an insurance policy holder and an insurer, where the insurer promises to pay a designated beneficiary sum of money (the "benefits") upon the death of the insured person. Depending on the contract, other events such as terminal illness or critical illness may also trigger payment. The policy holder typically pays a premium, either regularly or as a lump sum. Other expenses (such as funeral expenses) are also sometimes included in the benefits. The advantage for the policy owner is "peace of mind", in knowing that the death of the insured person will not result in financial hardship for loved ones and lenders. Life policies are legal contracts and the terms of the contract describe the limitations of the insured events. Specific exclusions are often written into the contract to limit the liability of the insurer; common examples are claims relating to suicide, fraud, war, riot and civil commotion. Life-based contracts tend to fall into two major categories: * Protection policies – designed to provide a benefit in the event of specified event, typically a lump sum payment. A common form of this design is term insurance. * Investment policies – where the main objective is to facilitate the growth of capital by regular or single premiums. Common forms (in the US) are whole life, universal life andvariable life policies.
Life insurance may be divided into two basic classes: temporary and permanent; or the following subclasses: term, universal, whole life and endowment life insurance. Term insurance
Term assurance provides life insurance coverage for a specified term. The policy does not accumulate cash value. Term is generally considered "pure" insurance, where the premium buys protection in the event of death and nothing else. There are three key factors to be considered in term insurance: 1. Face amount (protection or death benefit),
2. Premium to be paid (cost to the insured), and
3. Length of coverage (term).
Various insurance companies sell term insurance with many different combinations of these three parameters. The face amount can remain constant or decline. The term can be for one or more years. The premium can remain level or increase. Common types of term insurance include level, annual renewable and mortgage insurance. Level term policy features a premium fixed for a period longer than a year. These terms are commonly 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30 and even 35 years. Level term is often used for long-term planning and asset management as premiums remain constant year to year, allowing for long-term budgeting. At the end of the term, some policies contain a renewal or conversion option. With guaranteed renewal, the insurance company guarantees it will issue a policy of an equal or lesser amount without regard to the insurability of the insured and with a premium set for the insured's age at that time. Some companies however do not guarantee renewal, and require proof of insurability at the time of renewal. Renewal that requires proof of insurability often includes a conversion option that allows the insured to convert the term policy to a permanent one, possibly compelling the applicant to agree to higher premiums. Renewal and conversion options can be very important when selecting a policy. Annual renewable term is a one-year policy, but the insurance company guarantees it will issue a policy of an equal or lesser amount regardless of the insurability of the applicant, and with a premium set for the applicant's age at that time. Another common type of term insurance is mortgage life insurance, which usually involves a level-premium, declining face value policy. The face amount is intended to equal...
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