Around the World, South Africa has been praised for our rapid and strict response to the COVID-19 pandemic, with the World Health organisation lauding government’s screening and testing efforts while World Leaders praise the country’s ability to pull together in a crisis. Even though the country faced sudden economic pressure and looming job losses, our people have followed President Ramaphosa’s lead in taking the coronavirus measures seriously.
This includes an unrivalled response by South Africans to the president’s call to stay home during the first phase of lockdown and the call to businesses to help fund relief efforts. Wealthy families and large enterprises have donated billions towards relief efforts and towards medical supplies. Along with the massive contributions by the wealthiest in the country, you may be surprised to know that many insurance providers have also joined with South Africa to make lockdown easier on our people.
What are Insurance Companies Doing to Ease the Burden of COVID-19 on South Africans?
In response to the global pandemic and the president’s call for contributions, insurance providers around the country are finding ways to help South Africans. From premium holidays to pausing your cover, here are the ways in which insurance companies want to help you during lockdown 2020.
OUTsurance’s COVID-19 Relief Efforts
As one of the leading insurance providers in the country, you can be sure OUTsurance wants to give their customers support during this time. Along with their commitment of R102 million towards COVID-19 relief, OUTsurance recently announced a 15% premium discount for OUTsurance customers for the month of May 2020 and a 10% discount for the month of June.
The discounts apply to personal and business car insurance and commercial goods-in-transit insurance policies. As part of OUTsurance’s effort to alleviate financial pressure, they are also reducing excesses for claims made between April and June 2020 by 50% for business insurance customers and 30% for personal customers.
A third and fourth measure offered will be the option to change your cover temporarily without any impact on your terms when you change back and an extended grace period for non-payment for an additional two months! Finally, OUTsurance customers have the option to access their OUTbonus if it was due within the next 6 months and use it to pay late premiums!
MiWay’s COVID-19 Relief Efforts
Within the first 5 weeks of the lockdown, MiWay committed R55 million to relief efforts. These included an initial 10% discount on premiums for car insurance and a later additional 7% discount adding up to over R18 million in savings for MiWay customers. By donating to the Solidarity Fund and other similar relief efforts, MiWay has been able to support the South African community at large.
Along with an initial response, MiWay announced a new insurance plan designed to address the longer-term impacts of the pandemic in June 2020. MiWay Car Insurance clients who work from home can now save 20% on their premiums with the new MiWheels at Home plan. The new plan makes it easier for the increased number of South Africans working from home to save on their insurance and to find financial stability in tumultuous times.
Budget Insurance’s COVID-19 Relief Efforts
With over R320 million spent in relief efforts, Budget and their holding company are offering customers innovative ways of financial relief during the lockdown. All annual premium increases have been paused until July 2020. Budget is allowing their business insurance and personal insurance customers to remove certain items from their cover, and in so doing get cheaper premiums temporarily. When the change needs to be reversed, there will be no penalties.
Budget is calling this “flexible cover”. Business and personal clients can choose to remove car hire from their policy benefits or change their plan altogether (for example, moving from comprehensive to a non-comprehensive plan). Budget also allows customers to move back to their initial policy whenever they want. This flexibility allows customers to adjust things for a while to remain financially secure.
Budget’s business insurance customers could also get a 10% – 20% discount on their premiums. To find out whether they qualify, customers need to contact Budget. Finally, Budget customers may be able to pause their cover or institute payment holidays.
Other Notable Relief Efforts by South African Insurance Companies
Santam has committed to refund 20% of car insurance premiums paid during the month of April. Virseker is offering R35 million in premium relief. Naked Insurance offers revolutionary Cover Pause for their car insurance plans, saving their customers up to 90% of their premiums during lockdown.
Standard Bank is offering its car insurance customers 25% back for their premiums during the lockdown period ending 30 April 2020. According to Johan Minnie, managing executive for client & adviser experience at Liberty, “Liberty is giving customers the option on certain products to not pay or pay a reduced premium on their cover-up until September 30, 2020, during the COVID-19 period.”
Find out if your insurance provider is offering any form of financial relief and how you could benefit by contacting them directly.
DISCLAIMER: The information provided in this article is meant for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal, medical, or financial advice. Facts stated in this article are correct at the time it was published.
Sources: 702; iol; news24; BusinessTech; OUTSurance; MiWay(1); MiWay(2); Budget; StandardBank; Moonstone; mg;