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I’m a 60-year-old retiree, and my wife is 55. We don’t have any diseases. I want to buy health insurance that covers both of us. Is it beneficial since health policies have a long waiting period? Am I late in buying health insurance?

—Ravindra

Life expectancy for healthy individuals at 60 could be well over 90 years, so it is still timely to buy health insurance. Waiting periods are applicable for pre-existing diseases and diseases specified in the policy. These waiting periods range between two to four years. Since you do not have a pre-existing condition, the waiting period will be less of an issue for you.

A few insurers offer special plans for senior citizens. Such plans provide coverage for pre-existing conditions with a premium loading. Since you do not have any pre-existing conditions, you could opt for a regular plan.

As both of you are in good health, most insurers will be willing to issue you coverage under their regular plans. But they may advise a medical check-up as part of their underwriting process.

I have a government job and am the only earning member in my family. We just had a second child, so I have decided to buy life insurance. I would like to understand some of the basics before I make a purchase so that I know what to ask an agent or look for in a policy. I’m 35 and my wife is 32.

—Name withheld on request

There are several types of life insurance policies. Your first life insurance should be a term insurance. Standard term insurance is the cheapest form of life insurance. It does not have any maturity benefits and no return of money. The nominee in the policy gets a lump sum in case of death of the policyholder.

While choosing a sum assured, you should opt for a cover of at least 10 times your annual income. Also, ask your agent about the insurer’s death claim settlement. This should be over 95%.

Abhishek Bondia is principal officer and managing director, SecureNow.in.

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