FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
GROUP HEALTH INSURANCE
What does personal insurance mean?
Personal insurance, as opposed to commercial or business insurance, refers to insurance policies and products meant for individuals or families. This encompasses a whole host of insurance products like automobile insurance, valuables insurance, home insurance, helper insurance, travel insurance, health insurance, life insurance, etc.
Personal insurance is an important piece of the financial picture that offers financial protection and peace of mind. To that end, we offer a wide variety of personal insurance products to help our customers manage risk.
Personal insurance is just one piece of a holistic risk management portfolio to give you confidence and peace of mind as you go about your day.
What is personal insurance cover?
There are a variety of personal insurance products including automobile insurance, valuables insurance, home insurance, fire insurance, helper insurance, travel insurance, etc. These different products are meant to be used in combination as needed to ensure that individuals and families are protected from financial risk where possible.
For example, a typical family might have a car, a home, a domestic helper, and would go on a family vacation once a year. In this example, they would need a variety of personal insurance products used in combination to cover all of their exposures.
To protect the vehicle, its occupants and others from injuries, they would need automobile insurance. To ensure that their largest investment – their home – is protected, they would need homeowners insurance. If they have valuables like expensive watches or jewellery, they would need valuables insurance. Under the Employees’ Compensation Ordinance in Hong Kong, they would need insurance to cover their domestic helper as well for any injuries sustained while on the job. When they go on their annual vacation, they would also need travel insurance for the whole family in case they get sick or injured in another country.
To determine the types of coverage you would need, contact a licensed Trusted Union insurance advisor to do a deep dive into your unique situation.
What is the difference between personal liability and personal injury?
Personal injury occurs when a person suffers bodily injury or death because of some accident. On top of that, personal injury is not restricted to physical injury – any psychological damage or mental distress is also considered personal injury. Personal injuries can be very serious things leading to permanent disability, financial issues and even death. If someone suffered a personal injury as a result of your actions or inactions, you could be sued and found liable (responsible) in court.
Personal liability is liability incurred by individual(s) rather than a business. It is liability that arises out of private activities rather than commercial ones. For example, if you invite some friends over to your home for dinner and one of them slips on a poorly nailed down carpet and injures themselves, that would be a case of personal liability as you are personally responsible. On the other hand, if a customer came into your store and tripped on a similarly poorly secured carpet and injured themselves, which would be an example of commercial liability.
Someone suing for personal injury would be seeking to recover money to compensate them for medical payments, mental distress or disfigurement, loss of future or current earnings, and a whole host of other things. To protect yourself against this type of claim and to ensure you’re able to provide fair compensation to the plaintiff, you should carry personal liability insurance.
How much is health insurance for one person?
How much your health insurance premiums would cost you depends on many factors and varies from insurance company to insurance company – even for the same person. Insurance companies have their own proprietary rate setting methodology but generally speaking, insurers look at a few things when trying to determine your premiums:
premiums are significantly higher for older people compared to younger people. This is because older people are more likely to get sick and make claims against the policy that the insurer will have to pay out on.
where you live has a big impact on claims costs. Medical care in certain places is more expensive than others (i.e. in the United States of America) and cost of living can be higher as well.
- Tobacco Use:
For obvious reasons, smokers can also expect to pay significantly more than non-smokers.
- Type of Coverage:
If you choose a more comprehensive plan or add dental onto your health insurance, it will naturally be more expensive to compensate for high claims costs to be paid by the insurer.
To get the most accurate quote for personal health insurance, contact us and we can help you complete an application form. There is no obligation or strings attached and if you do decide to purchase a policy with Trusted Union, we will do our best to secure the lowest rate possible for you.
What is personal liability insurance?
Personal liability insurance in Hong Kong is designed to protect you against any unexpected claims alleging personal injury or property damage due to your negligence. This includes other miscellaneous actions like defamation or mental anguish.
More importantly, there is worldwide coverage for this type of insurance, so you’re protected no matter where you go but there is no coverage for liability arising out of business activities.
Some examples of things that would be covered include:
If you’re hosting a dinner party at your home and a guest slips on some water that you spilled. If they received a serious back or head injury, they could sue you. Luckily, your personal liability insurance policy would cover that.
If you’re on family vacation and one of your children accidentally damages the antique lamp in the hotel room, the hotel could sue to try to recover damages. If you have personal liability insurance, your policy would cover it as coverage is global.
If you accidentally hit someone with a ball on the golf course.
If your dog accidentally bites your neighbour.
If your child accidentally injures a classmate at school.
If your child accidentally and unfairly disparages a local business on social media.
If you’re sued for any of these things, and more, you could be held personally liable – meaning your home and other assets could be at risk. Personal liability insurance should be used to protect yourself.
What is personal accident insurance?
No matter where you are in the world, accidents and illnesses can happen leading to bodily injury or financial strain. And the tough part is, they usually happen when they’re least expected. So how do you make sure you’re protected from the financial fallout that these accidents can cause? By purchasing a personal accident insurance policy.
Many policies will have a discovery period of 2 years. If any information on the application is found to be purposefully inaccurate during this time, your coverage can be denied.
Personal accident insurance policies will pay you a lump sum if you are permanently disabled or die as the result of an accident. This money comes with no strings attached for you to use as you please. Many people use it to pay for medical bills, income replacement if you’re unable to work, or as a lump sum benefit left to your surviving dependants. Some policies will also have extra coverage income replacement while you’re in hospital.
There are different types of personal accident insurance including some that offer coverage even while you’re abroad (sort of like travel insurance). Other ancillary coverages commonly offered include reimbursement if your wallet of handbag is stolen while in a foreign country, or payment of a sum of money that can be used for emergency purposes in a foreign country or to replace the important documents stolen along with your wallet or handbag.
While these policies generally won’t cover injuries resulting from participation in a dangerous professional sport, some will offer coverage for dangerous amateur sports. That said, we specialize in helping clients find insurance no matter who they are so get in touch with us. We’re confident we can help you.
Does homeowners insurance cover personal injury?
A personal injury is when a person suffers bodily injuries or psychological damage as the result of an accident. In line with the seriousness of such injuries, damages awarded by courts in personal injury lawsuits are very high. To protect yourself against this, people should consider having some sort of personal injury insurance in place.
Luckily, most people already do. When most people think about homeowners insurance, they think about the coverage the policy provides if their home or personal property (i.e. television, jewellery, handbags, furniture, etc.) are damaged. While this is all very important and is the primary reason for purchasing homeowners insurance, the personal liability coverage that comes with it shouldn’t be overlooked.
The personal liability section of your homeowners policy will pay for damages the court orders you to pay the plaintiff as well as any trial costs and legal fees incurred in the process. This coverage pays for liability arising out of personal (non-business) activities on a world-wide basis. That means if you accidentally drop something out of a hotel window while on vacation and hit someone in the head, you would still have the same coverage you would if a guest slipped and fell in your home back in Hong Kong.
What does personal liability insurance cover?
Generally speaking, we all have a legal duty to exercise due care in our conduct towards others when doing an activity that may cause harm to others (i.e. while driving). If you’re doing something that has the potential to cause property damage or bodily injury to 3rd parties, you have a general legal duty to exercise reasonable care in your performance of that activity. If you don’t and you cause harm to a 3rd party, they can sue and if you were found liable, you would need to pay damages. Depending on the extent of the injury or property damage and the skill of the plaintiff’s lawyer, these amounts can be hugely damaging to your personal finances.
Personal liability insurance, as the name implies, insures liability arising out of personal (aka. non-business) activities. The main purpose of a personal liability policy is to pay for any damages the court orders you to pay the person you’ve harmed.
Another often overlooked coverage provided by most liability insurance policies is coverage for defense costs. Because your insurer will be paying damages if you lose, they clearly have a vested interest in your legal defense. As a result, they will be hiring and paying for a lawyer to help defend you. As legal fees charged by a competent lawyer can be astronomical, this often overlooked coverage section is worth more than your insurance broker’s weight in gold.
This liability extends to include liability from activities done by the insured themselves or by others acting on the insured’s behalf (i.e. your domestic helper). For example, if your domestic helper accidentally dropped something out of the window while cleaning your apartment, you would be held vicariously liable for the actions of your “employee” and your personal liability insurance would step in to provide coverage.
Can one person have two health insurance policies?
Yes, you can have as many insurance policies as you want and there’s nothing stopping you from having more than one. That said, if you do end up purchasing multiple insurance policies, the insurance company might have some additional questions for you regarding why you would want so many.
A common situation which leads to people having multiple policies is if there is one provided through their workplace (i.e. if your employer offers group benefits or group health insurance) and you want to get a personal individual health insurance policy in order to get better coverage.
But just because you have 2 health insurance policies does not mean you necessarily have twice the coverage. Usually, health insurance policies only pay in excess of any other coverage or compensation you have. The trouble comes when determining which insurance policy is primarily responsible for paying the claim. If both policies are considered primary, then they would share the costs of the claim proportionally. This means that even though it’s possible for you to get more than one health insurance policy, it’s not always the best decision unless you have a specific plan in place.
Can you take out life insurance on another person?
Yes you can. You can take out a life insurance policy on another person as long as you have some kind of insurable interest in their life.
To have insurable interest in someone’s life means that you would suffer financially if that person’s life were to end – examples of people with insurable interest in your life could include your employer (if you have special skills, relationships or play a key role in their business, they could suffer a financial loss if you were to become dead or disabled), your spouse or your children (if you are the primary breadwinner in the family providing most of the household’s income), or any other dependent relatives.
Common examples would be a spouse taking out a policy on their spouse’s life, a dependent taking a policy out on their parent’s life, or even a business taking a life insurance policy out on a key executive or employee (this is sometimes called Key Man Insurance and is an important part of many knowledge or relationship based businesses). Sometimes, a business may also take out a life insurance policy on the founder’s life.
Why is car insurance higher for a person under 25?
When insurance companies look to set pricing for certain things, they look at many factors that could influence the risk or the potential for a loss to occur. During this process, they would look for factors relating to the thing being insured and the person seeking insurance.
Using automobile insurance as an example, they might look at the make, model and year of your vehicle. Different cars represent different levels of risk. For example, a sports car is more likely to get into a serious accident compared to a regular passenger vehicle. A more expensive car is also more expensive to repair which means you’ll need to pay more for insurance. If you have modifications on your car related to racing or sound systems, that would make it higher risk of crashing, theft and also more expensive to repair in case of a loss.
Now looking at the applicant for car insurance, the experience of the driver and their accident safety record plays a big part in setting prices. A young driver under 25 years old is more likely to have little or no driving history for the insurance company to base their decisions off and would be automatically be considered high risk because of their young age and relative inexperience. For this reason, even though it might not be entirely fair, younger applicants typically pay more for insurance than older applicants.
What is life insurance and how does it work?
Just like how home insurance protects your house and car insurance protects your car, life insurance protects your life.
A life insurance policy is a contract between you and the insurance company where the insurer promises to pay your beneficiaries a lump sum of money if you die while the policy is active. In exchange, you pay the insurance company money (in the form of premiums) on a regular basis to maintain this coverage.
The insurance company takes the premiums you pay and invests it to try to earn a profit before paying out any benefits.
When applying for life insurance, you’re able to choose which beneficiaries to include and what amounts they would get. You can also choose between 2 types of life insurance: Term Life Insurance and Permanent or Whole Life Insurance.
A Term Life Insurance policy does exactly as the name would imply, it is a life insurance policy that is valid for a specific term (usually 10, 15 or even 25 years). If you outlive the policy, the policy lapses and nothing happens (although you may have the option to extend or convert it into a Permanent Life Insurance policy). If you pass away during the policy term, a lump sum benefit is paid out directly to your dependents. This policy is the most flexible and is commonly used to achieve short-term goals.
A Permanent Life Insurance policy is one that is active for as long as you’re paying premiums. The main advantage here over the Term policy is that you do not have to worry about insurability or whether you’re able to get another policy after the term expires.
All things being equal, a term life insurance policy will be much more affordable than a permanent life insurance policy. There is no best policy, it all depends on your budget, needs, and reasons for purchasing life insurance in the first place.
Why should I get life insurance?
As the saying goes, there are only 2 things certain in life: death and taxes.
Whether you like it or not, if you’re the head of the household, you’re a walking ATM for the rest of your family. They depend on you to bring in money every month to pay for expenses and maintain their lifestyle. How would they fare if you were no longer there to bring home a pay cheque every month? Probably not well.
If you don’t have life insurance to help replace your income, your passing could mean serious financial hardship for your surviving family members and dependents. For this reason, many people will purchase enough life insurance to replace their lost income (either fully or partially for a time), pay down the home mortgage, and/or build a college education fund for their children.
If you do decide to purchase life insurance, make sure you let your dependents know so they can contact the insurance company for their lump sum benefit.
When should you get life insurance?
Usually, the decision to purchase life insurance is triggered by an important life event. With our clients, we usually see them look at life insurance when they buy a house, start a family, or have a child.
For example, you might decide to take out a 25 year term life insurance policy when you get a mortgage for your family home. This makes sure that if you were to pass before the mortgage was paid off, your family would have the money necessary to pay off the home and not have to worry about moving.
That said, you should look at purchasing life insurance as early as reasonably possible for 2 reasons: cost and coverage.
One of the most important factors insurance companies look at when setting your premiums is which age bracket you fall into. The older you are, the more you can expect to pay because insurance companies estimate that you’re more likely to pass away as you age.
Your coverage options are also more limited as you age. Once you get above 50 years old, many insurers are reluctant to insure you which limit your choices. As you grow older, you may also develop some chronic conditions that require ongoing treatment. Depending on the condition, it’s possible that the insurer would decline to cover death resulting from that pre-existing condition.
Is life insurance a good idea?
If you have dependents who rely on your income in order to meet their basic and lifestyle needs, carrying some life insurance is a good idea.
Stripping aside all the fancy add-ons and tricks you can do with life insurance, the whole goal is to replace your income if you were to pass away. The idea is that if you die prematurely, your spouse and kids wouldn’t need to take on multiple jobs, sell the house, or endure extra financial hardship because they have the lump sum benefit from your life insurance policy.
What are benefits of life insurance?
Life insurance gives you and your family peace of mind knowing that they would be well taken care of even if you were to pass away.
Most clients choose to purchase enough life insurance to pay for a mortgage, replace their income for a time, fund their children’s education, or give enough financial breathing room for their spouse to re-train and start working again.
A common strategy used by many insureds is called “laddering”. Think about what might trigger you to purchase life insurance – for example, starting a family. You’ve purchased a new house and have a new child on the way. In this situation, where do you have the most risk? Probably somewhere between the first 15-20 years. As your child get older and starts to support themselves, your risk gets lower and lower.
In that case, we might advise that you purchase a 20 year term policy for HK$3,000,000 and a 35 year term policy for HK$1,000,000. By layering life insurance policies in this way, you never pay for more coverage than necessary because your coverage decreases as your risk decreases. If you were to pass away prematurely in the first 20 years, your spouse and child would have HK$4,000,000 in coverage. If you outlive the 20 year term, your first policy lapses and you have HK$1,000,000 in coverage. That isn’t much but it’s OK – you’re likely closer to retirement age so saving money on your life insurance premiums is a good thing and your child would hopefully be self-sufficient by now.
What is not covered by life insurance?
There are a few reasons when life insurance benefits would be denied but here are some common examples:
Many policies will have a discovery period of 2 years. If any information on the application is found to be purposefully inaccurate during this time, your coverage can be denied.
Insurance companies can also deny your claim if premiums aren’t paid in a timely manner.
Generally speaking, insurance companies will not cover death resulting from alcohol or drug abuse, or deaths resulting from a pre-existing condition. In addition, if you deliberately put yourself at risk of injury or death, they usually won’t cover that either.
Life insurance coverage is pretty comprehensive but if there’s something unique about your situation that you’re concerned about getting coverage for, speak with us and we’ll find suitable coverage for you.
Do you pay life insurance forever?
If you purchase a term life insurance policy, then no. You would only need to pay premiums for as long as the policy is active (i.e. for 10 years).
If you’ve purchased a whole life insurance policy then yes, you would need to pay premiums for your whole life for your policy to remain active. That said, many whole life policies will still lapse if you’re lucky enough to hit age 120. But by then, you likely won’t have very many dependents to take care of anyways.
Does life insurance pay for medical bills?
No it does not. Life insurance is a type of insurance policy designed to pay your dependents a lump sum of money upon the death of the policyholder. That means it will only kick in after you pass away.
If you’re looking for coverage for medical bills while you’re still alive, you should consider purchasing health insurance.
What happens to life insurance if you don't die?
If you purchase a term life insurance policy and outlive the term you’ve chosen, the policy lapses and nothing happens. That said, some insurers will give you the option to convert the policy into a permanent life insurance policy (subject to an application and/or medical exam) or renew it for an additional fixed term.
If it’s a permanent life insurance policy and you’re making your scheduled payments then this question doesn’t really apply – unfortunately, everyone dies eventually (at least for now). But if you stop making payments, then naturally, the policy lapses. If you’re lucky enough to live until age 120, your policy would lapse as well.
That said, that doesn’t mean life insurance is only useful if you die. With a permanent life insurance policy, you’re able to borrow money from the accumulated cash value.
Is life insurance a good investment?
Life insurance policies should be used as part of an overall financial and estate planning strategy. Many whole life insurance plans come with a distinct investment component that can generate surprising returns.
With a whole life policy, each time you pay your monthly premiums, a fixed amount will go towards the “cash value” of your policy which is able to accumulate and earn interest.
One major advantage of this cash value from a financial planning perspective is that you don’t have to pay taxes on that cash value until you withdraw the proceeds. It grows on a tax-deferred basis. With many policies, you’re also able to borrow money from the cash value portion.
Some policies may also provide accelerated benefits if you become critically ill. If you develop a serious terminal illness, you may be able to receive 25%-100% of your death benefit before you die to help improve your quality of life in your final days.
Can you get life insurance at any age?
The answer to this question is complicated: yes and no. Most insurance companies will set an age limit on new applicants as a way to control risk. Most insurance companies will set their limit to 60 or 70 years old.
That said, as people live longer and delay different life decisions for longer, senior life insurance is becoming a more popular thing. Although at this age, a Term Life Insurance policy is more than adequate, you can still purchase a Permanent Life Insurance policy if that’s the one you feel the most comfortable with.
Although your options may be more limited at an older age, it is still very possible to purchase life insurance. In fact, we specialize in helping clients find specialist insurance built specifically for their needs. Contact a licensed Trusted Union life insurance broker in Hong Kong to learn more about your options.
What is health insurance and how does it work?
The first choice is an individual health insurance plan - which only covers the applicant. The second option is a family health insurance plan which covers everyone in the household including dependents and children.
The most basic level of cover pays for benefits if the insured is admitted to hospital. Basically, it pays for treatment received (including drugs taken) in a hospital admission as an Inpatient or day-patient.
This higher coverage option provides all the cover that’s included in the inpatient plan but adds benefits for doctor or specialist visits, prescription drugs taken OTC, diagnostics, and rehabilitation or physiotherapy.
Who is eligible for health insurance?
Nearly anyone is eligible to purchase health insurance but some insurance companies will impose certain restrictions. Most commonly, some insurance companies do not want to accept applicants over a certain age.
Many insurance companies will also require an application form where you disclose detailed medical information to help them evaluate your risk potential, insurability, and how much premium to charge you.
Another important caveat is that many insurance companies will have exclusions for uncontrolled pre-existing conditions. If you have a pre-existing condition that requires ongoing treatment and is worsening in the time leading up to the application, they will still insure you but may add an exclusion for that pre-existing condition.
That said, we specialize in hard-to-place applicants so if you don’t want to submit a detailed medical questionnaire, have “negative” lifestyle factors like smoking or a dangerous occupation, or have pre-existing conditions, we can help. Just contact a licensed Trusted Union health insurance insurance broker for help.
What is the benefit of health insurance?
While the public healthcare system in Hong Kong is very well developed and meets and sometimes exceeds global standards in many areas, there are downsides. The hospitals and rooms are often overcrowded, uncomfortable, has long wait times, and has possible language barriers for expats.
The private healthcare system is a great alternative that alleviates many of these issues but it is expensive. Purchasing health insurance means that the insurance company will help pay for many of these costs. That said, the exact level of coverage you get depends on the tier of plan you choose to purchase.
How much does health insurance cost?
The short answer is: it’s hard to say as it depends on each individual applicant. But there are some factors that we know will influence your health insurance premiums.
The first and most important factor is your age. Insurance companies frequently use age brackets to set prices. The older you are, the more expensive your health insurance will be.
The second most important factor is the results of your medical questionnaire and medical hostory. If you have “negative” lifestyle factors like a smoking habit, excessive alcohol consumption, or a dangerous occupation, that would negatively affect your health insurance premiums.
Why should I take health insurance?
Hong Kong has a very well established and well regarded public medical system. This system is based off of the UK’s NHS and offers free or highly subsidized healthcare courtesy of the Hong Kong government. That said, there are downsides. The public healthcare system is often overcrowded, not as comfortable, has long wait times, and could have language barriers that some expat patients may not be able to overcome.
The private healthcare system on the other hand, is preferred by most expats and the people who can afford it. They offer shorter wait times for potentially life-saving medical treatment, private rooms and luxury accommodations and a more multilingual medical team of doctors and nurses who are assigned to you throughout your treatment. The downside is that it can be very expensive.
You should consider purchasing either an individual health insurance policy or a family health insurance policy to help cover some of the expenses involved in using private hospitals in Hong Kong.
What age should I get health insurance?
There is no set age when you should get health insurance - it all depends on your unique situation. If you’re young and still considered a dependant, you might not need your own individual health insurance policy if your parents have a family policy. And it’s never too late, even if you’re a senior citizen, we have access to seniors health insurance that accepts applicants as old as 85 years old.
That said, we do recommend people buy health insurance as early as they can. And this is for 2 reasons: lower premiums and less chance of pre-existing or chronic conditions being excluded.
The primary factor insurance companies use to assess your risk and the amount of premium you pay is your age. The younger you are when you first purchase insurance, the cheaper it will be.
Another reason to buy insurance as early as possible is the fear of developing a chronic condition appearing and being excluded by your policy. For example, if you develop a heart condition that requires ongoing treatment or medication prior to purchasing insurance, the insurer might consider that a pre-existing condition and won’t cover medical expenses related to that heart condition.
How long is my baby covered under my insurance?
It varies greatly based on insurer, the coverage tier you’ve selected, and the limits of insurance chosen. For example, coverage limits range from HK$20,000 to HK$155,000.
Under some maternity insurance polices, your newborn baby may be covered for up to 30 days or a maximum sub limit for ‘New Born Coverage’, but be sure to check with your insurance company or broker for the exact details as policy terms and benefits vary for each insurer.
Children must be added to the policy holders health insurance plan ASAP to ensure they have proper full coverage.
One important point to note is that the newborn may be able to be covered without any medical questionnaires or extra underwriting work to be done. That means all conditions would be covered subject to the terms and conditions of the policy.
Can a health plan refuse to let me enroll because I’m pregnant?
Purchasing maternity insurance while you’re already pregnant isn’t always the best idea because of the waiting period required before any claims are payable. Because of this waiting period, costs incurred during your pregnancy may not be covered.
We always recommend you purchase maternity insurance well in advance but if you do buy a policy while pregnant, there are still some important coverages you can get.
Your newborn baby is covered regardless of medical history. This means they’ll be covered for all pre-existing or congenital diseases. If you didn’t purchase a maternity insurance policy and opted for a stand-alone health insurance policy for your child, you would not have that extra protection.
You may also get coverage for complications of pregnancy provided those complications are not from pre-existing conditions.
What prenatal care can I expect to be covered by my health plan during pregnancy?
Most maternity health insurance plans in Hong Kong will cover the routine prenatal treatments as well as any complications that might arise. This includes coverage for things like:
And other consultations, check-ups and treatments during pregnancy
These types of treatments are generally carried out by an obstetrician/gynecologist (OB/GYN), family doctor, nurse, or perinatologist.
A more comprehensive plan may even offer coverage for fertility treatments and in vitro fertilization (IVF) treatments to help facilitate pregnancy.
What delivery costs and after-delivery costs will be covered?
Coverage will vary from insurer to insurer and depending on the plan you’ve purchased. That said, there are some general coverages that you should consider.
Delivery Costs Covered:
Delivery at the hospital of your choice
Costs of routine vaginal delivery
Cost of delivery with complications
Medically necessary caesarean section
Delivery requiring emergency surgery
Delivery Costs Covered:
Postnatal care such as hospitalisation, newborn care, checkups, treatments, etc.
Treatment of congenital birth defects
Extended coverage for the newborn
What happens after my baby is born?
For most policies, your coverage effectively ends - especially if the delivery was free of any complications or ongoing medical issues. But some more comprehensive plans will include coverage for the cost of treating any congenital birth defects and even extend health insurance coverage to the newborn child.
Extending coverage to the newborn child is particularly valuable if you either don’t have a family health insurance policy or if that policy does not automatically extend coverage to newborns. Having maternity insurance that automatically extends coverage to the baby helps to prevent any gaps in coverage during that time..
What does group insurance mean?
Group insurance means health insurance for a group - usually a business. This is different from individual health insurance which only covers a single individual. Group insurance premiums are paid for by the employer and can be tailored to a business’ specific needs.
There are different tiers of group insurance policy which offer different levels of coverage. It can cover everything from regular health insurance stuff like hospitalisation, outpatient expenses, dental and vision coverage to more exotic things like maternity insurance, long-term disability and critical illness, or life insurance.
Hong Kong business owners should consider purchasing group health insurance as an employee benefit to ensure you can attract and retain the best employees.
How do group health insurance plans work?
Group health insurance plans work in a very similar way to an individual healthcare plan. When purchasing the plan, you’re allowed to choose between different tiers of coverage and different coverage terms. Then it covers each employee enrolled in the plan like they have their own individual health insurance coverage.
Premiums are paid for by the employer and can be tailored by a group benefits professional to meet the specific needs of your business and its employees. But employees would still be responsible for paying their own deductibles or co-payments.
That said, because of the sheer number of employees being enrolled at policy inception, and as people get hired/fired as time goes on, the enrollment process for each employee is not as strict. While there may be a medical questionnaire given to each new enrollee, they will likely not require a thorough medical exam.
Another important caveat is that unlike individual health insurance, a group health insurance policy does not travel with you. If you leave your job or switch to a new company, you could be left with no coverage. This can be especially onerous if you’re taking chronic medications that are currently being covered by your group policy.
What is the difference between group health insurance and individual?
Individual health insurance and group health insurance in Hong Kong don’t differ much. You’re still eligible for the same types of coverage options and roughly the same terms and conditions.
The only real difference is that a group health insurance plan insures multiple people (an entire business) whereas an individual policy insures an individual only. In most cases, a
There are also family health insurance policies available which works much like a group policy but for an individual and their immediate family members.
Can I get group health insurance?
If you’re an employee of a company, you may need to speak with your HR person, boss, or manager about getting group health insurance as it’s up to them.
But if you’re a business owner with more than 1 employee (that is not you or a partner/owner) you would be able to get group health insurance.
Group health insurance has many benefits helping you with employee retention and attracting the best talent to your organization. Many studies have shown that employees who are healthy are more productive; and employees that are well cared for will feel a sense of loyalty to your business and would not be as easily convinced to go work for a competitor lured by the possibility to higher compensation.
Who is covered under a group insurance plan?
When a business owner or the HR/benefits manager at a company decides to purchase a group health insurance policy in Hong Kong, they can also choose who to enroll in it. Unlike Employees’ Compensation insurance, a group health insurance plan is not mandatory for businesses.
In most cases, businesses will extend coverage to allow all full-time employees to be enrolled but some businesses may choose to reserve this privilege for senior staff members, executives, or other key personnel.
How much does group health insurance cost?
Like with individual health insurance, the answer is: it depends. Among other factors, it depends on your level of coverage selected, the number of employees being insured by this policy and the type of work your business does on a regular basis.
If you select a higher tier of coverage with lower waiting periods or deductibles, you can expect to pay more. Similarly, a business with 15 employees enrolled would pay significantly less than one that intends to enroll 1000 employees. Also, a business that is in the heavy industry sector has employees that are doing dangerous work and are more exposed to risk. In that case, insurance companies calculate that the claims costs for that company would be higher in general so they have to charge more to compensate.
What are the advantages of a group plan?
There are many advantages to purchasing a group health insurance plan as a business in Hong Kong.
The first is that it’s cheaper than purchasing individual health insurance for each of your employees. By bundling them all together in a group health insurance plan, you will save money on your annual premiums.
The other key advantages lie in HR. Studies have shown that employees who have access to great healthcare through work are more likely to show loyalty and be less likely to leave you for a competitor lured by higher compensation. A group health insurance plan acts as a moat surrounding your business and protecting it from predatory recruiters and headhunters trying to poach your top talent.
Another less appreciated factor is employee productivity. Many employees neglect to seek medical attention because of cost reasons. Although public hospitals offer nearly free medical care to all HK ID holders, they have long wait times that employees are not willing to wait in line for. With a group health insurance plan, employees will have access to funds or reimbursement so they would be more willing to see a doctor and have their health issues resolved before it begins to impact their productivity and performance at work.
How many employees do you need to qualify for group health insurance?
Different companies have different preferences as far as the number of people to be enrolled in the group health insurance plan but really any business with more than 1 employee would qualify.
Generally speaking, an insurer who prefers small groups would look at companies with between one and 50 employees. If you have more than 50 employees, then it would be considered a large group. If that’s what you need, we can help with that as well - just get in touch.
Can I still get coverage under a group health insurance plan if I have a pre-existing condition?
You might have heard that health insurance plans would not cover pre-existing conditions. While this is true, there are exceptions to that rule for group health insurance plans.
If the plan is insuring more than 5 employees, many insurers will offer a “medical history disregarded”. That means you would be covered even for pre-existing or chronic conditions.This exception exists because of the logistical complexity involved in getting medical histories and health exams for large groups of employees.
What is Event Insurance?
Whether you’re hosting a gala, charity dinner, sporting event, corporate function, concert, wedding, or just a plain old party, people can be injured and property can be damaged. Purchasing event insurance can help protect you against any risks associated with hosting your function.
Event insurance coverage can be tailored specifically to the type of event you are hosting ranging from a simple corporate Christmas party to more elaborate multi-day concerts or exhibitions.
Although public liability coverage is the most important protection offered by event insurance as it protects you against liability claims from attendees, the venue owner, and other 3rd parties other important coverage options include: event cancelation, exhibition insurance, non-appearance insurance, forced loss of audience protection, and wedding dress protection.
Why is insurance important for an event?
Hong Kongers love to have fun – with the go go go nature of the city, events like galas, weddings, sporting events, and corporate functions offer Hong Kongers an important way to cut loose a little even while doing business on the side. That said, a lot can go wrong during an event and the last thing you want is to be the subject of a lawsuit if something goes awry. Audience members can become injured or the venue owner’s property can be damaged by an attendee or by the event activities themselves.
If you’re planning an event, purchasing event insurance can give you several vital coverages to ensure you’re protected financially from any liability arising out of the event.
While event insurance coverage is tailored specifically to the event you’re running, common protections include:
● Public Liability
● Event Cancelation
● Exhibition Insurance
● Non-appearance Insurance
● Forced Loss of Audience Protection
● Wedding Dress Protection
The most important protection here is the public liability coverage which protects you against lawsuits from 3rd parties alleging bodily injury, property damage or personal injury (ie. wrongful arrest by event security staff).
How much does it cost for event insurance?
There is no short answer to this. It depends on the nature of the event, the activities that attendees will be participating in, the number of attendees, the size and location of the venue, and whether there will be alcohol served during the event.
If you’re planning an event and want a preliminary idea of costs so you can include them in your budget, speak with a Trusted Union insurance advisor about your event. We’ve dealt with event insurance with premiums as low as HK$2,750 to as high as HK$1,000,000 ++ and will work to get you the best protection for your budget.
Do I need public liability insurance for an event?
For many event planners and event promoters, public liability insurance is the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about insuring an event – and for good reason. As fun as events are, they are also pretty risky. Even sober corporate networking events can quickly get out of hand and guests can be injured.
Common examples include lighting fixtures that come loose and fall onto an attendee or an attendee becoming a little bit too intoxicated and accidentally breaking some of the venue’s furniture.
Event insurance public liability provides good coverage against accidental bodily injury and property damage to any person including attendees and passers-by. It also provides coverage against accidental trespass, nuisance or interference or personal injury claims like accidental wrongful arrest, detention or false imprisonment.
Protection against public liability is granted on a worldwide basis but many will exclude Canada and the United States. That means if you have attendees coming in from excluded countries and decide to raise their lawsuit against you in their home country, you would have no protection. It would simply cost insurance companies too much to defend you in those excluded jurisdictions.
What type of insurance do event planners need?
Planning an event is a high-wire juggling act. With so many moving parts, it’s not odd for something to do catastrophically wrong. Event insurance includes all sorts of coverage to protect against practically everything that can go awry.
As part of your event insurance, you can get the following coverage:
Public Liability: this protects you against 3rd party liability claims alleging things like bodily injury, property damage, trespass or nuisance, wrongful arrest or detention, and false arrest.
Event Cancelation: events can be cancelled for many reasons – some of which are outside even the most experienced event planner’s control – such as flood, earthquake or typhoon. Event cancelation insurance will reimburse event planners for non-refundable expenses incurred in organizing the event, profits, and other additional costs.
Exhibition Insurance: if your event is an exhibition with 3rd party exhibitors putting up booths and the like, exhibition insurance protects you against damage to their stands/booths. You can also get coverage for objects being exhibited such as jewellery, artwork, etc.
Non-appearance Insurance: often times, events hinge upon one person. Maybe it’s a band to a concert or a bride at a wedding. Without these people, the event cannot continue. In these vital persons are unable to make it to the event due to things like death, injury, illness, etc. the event has to be cancelled or postponed. Non-appearance insurance will step in to reimburse any non-refundable costs.
Forced Loss of Audience Protection: if for some reason your audience cannot make it to your event, even if it’s for a reason beyond the insured’s control, they will demand compensation (ie. refunds). In these cases, forced loss of audience protection will step in to compensate these people. Examples of common causes of audience loss include public transport strikes, bad weather, national disaster, or breakdown of the reservation/ticketing system.
Wedding Dress Protection: it’s no understatement to say that wedding dresses are expensive. Whether it’s your own wedding or you’re a planner getting coverage for your clients, you should purchase this protection to cover damage to the wedding dress the bride owns, rents, or borrows. This protection will pay for the full value of the dress if it is destroyed or for cleaning or restoration if the dress is fixable. Coverage is provided on a worldwide basis so even destination weddings are protected here.
How do I get a certificate of insurance for an event?
A lot of venues like hotels, restaurants, and conference halls will require a certificate of insurance from the host before they will rent the location to you. Once you’ve purchase event insurance, speak with your insurance broker to get a certificate of insurance.
Tip: Many venues will require their business name, mailing address, etc. on the certificate of insurance. Check with the venue to see what sort of information they need on the certificate before approaching your broker to make sure you get your certificate of insurance in time to secure your booking.